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Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Sacred Space / Arrupe

There was another interesting opening thought at Sacred Space this week, which mentioned Pedro Arrupe SJ, - he who witnessed the bombing of Hiroshima, who began the Jesuit Refugee Service, and who served as the general of the Jesuits around the time of Vatican II and the flowering of liberation theology, . Here it is from Sacred Space ....


Something to think and pray about this week

You remember that Jesus once took a little child, whom the apostles were shooing away, and told them: Unless you become like little children, you will not enter the kingdom of heaven. The fact is, at the end, we do become like little children. We stop achieving, lose our driving license, and depend more and more on others to do things for us. Fr Pedro Arrupe, the last general of the Jesuits, at the end of his life was felled by a stroke, which crippled and silenced him. He could neither walk nor talk, though he could still write. He sent this message to the Jesuits who gathered to elect his successor: More than ever, I find myself in the hands of God. This is what I have wanted all my life, from my youth. And this is still the one thing I want. But now there is a difference: the initiative is entirely with God. It is indeed a profound spiritual experience to know and feel myself so totally in his hands.



Blogger Paul said...

I can readily imagine this; at the same time, I've been living something quite different.

It doesn't feel like being a little child to be severely disabled, living alone, and trying to arrange for help around the house from the third new home health care aide in as many months. You pay the agency 20 to 25 dollars an hour; the aide gets minimum wage or a little higher, and sometimes comes with an attitude.

To me your post helps show that when we lose our independence, our experience of God's care can depend quite a lot on how that caring comes to us, or doesn't, by way of others.

6:07 PM  
Blogger crystal said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

7:38 PM  
Blogger crystal said...


you're in my prayers (does that sound weird :-) because I have an idea of how things are for you.

I think living with others and having no money worries can really make a difference to the quality of life of anyone but especially to those who need assistance.

I'd guess there are aspects of being dependent that would be the same for everyone who's in a similar situation. I just experience a little of it - I depend on my sister for so many things because I can't see well.

I don't know if I'll ever get to that state of mind that Arrupe expressed. I'm still stuck in feart and bitterness most of the time.

8:47 PM  
Blogger Deacon Denny said...

Bishop Topel's attitude was like that. He was the bishop of Spokane about 30 years ago. Joan and I had occasion to meet with him personally in order to get permission to have our wedding ceremony outdoors -- but that's another story sometime.

Topel was a bishop who lived a very simple lifestyle. After he retired from active duty as bishop, he began to suffer from dimentia, and his attitude was that since God had given him everything, God could certainly have anything and everything: "And if God wants to take my mind, too, that's OK."

I'm on the verge of hitting 60 in a few months, and the body is getting rickety in places. I hope my attitude can be like Topel's and Arrupe's.

11:33 AM  
Blogger crystal said...

Happy almosr birthday, Denny.

7:40 PM  

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