Have you ever felt misunderstood? Undervalued?
The book we have been reading for Lent, The Passion and the Cross by Ronald Rolheiser, gave me a whole new way of thinking of Jesus’ last week. He calls it
the Agony of a Lover: “It is Jesus the Lover—the one who calls us to intimacy and delight with him—who sweats blood in the garden…In Gethsemane we see Jesus suffering as a lover…his real pain is that of a lover who’s been misunderstood and rejected in a way that is mortal and humiliating…The agony in the garden is many things, but first of all, it’s Jesus’ entry into the darkest black hole of human existence, the black hole of bitter misunderstanding, rejection, aloneness, loneliness, humiliation and the helplessness to do anything about it.”
Rolheiser reflects on the pain of Jesus being betrayed and abandoned by the very ones who proclaim that they love him. He adds, “Only after having prayed is Jesus finally able to say, ‘ Yet not my will but yours be done.’ When he says this, his gift is pure. He is able to give himself over without resentment to the demands of a love which will take his whole life. After his prayer in Gethsemane, he is able to do what he needs to do without the feeling that he is a victim: ‘Nobody takes my life from me; I give it up freely!’…What’s special about Jesus is how he prepared himself to meet death by being willing to die without resentment, without putting a price tag on it, without making anyone feel guilty about it and with a heart that was warm rather than cold, forgiving rather than bitter, and large and understanding enough that it didn’t have to demand its due. In the face of bitter duty, [and I would add whole-hearted integrity to say and live what he believed and saw as his mission] he took his life and his love and made them a free gift.”
That’s a lot to chew on for this Holy Week—the agony of a lover—dying without resentment—with a heart that is warm, loving, still reaching out to others with a gift of love. We invite you to join us in our spiritual walk this week.
We also invite you to join us for services if you are able: Holy Thursday 5:30; Good Friday 12-3 Statehouse Witness, 7:30 Weston UCC; Easter Vigil ~ 7pm Saturday, (Note: No Sunday Eucharist) Please see details in the attached flyer .
Jan Richardson has a blessing to get us started:
Blessing of Palm
can be heard coming
from a long way off.
its steady way
up the road
blooms in the throats
springs from the hearts
tumbles out of the mouths
is stitched into
of the cloaks
that line the road,
that trace the path,
of the willing colt,
of the donkey’s hoof
against the stones.
Something is rising
beneath this blessing.
Something will try
to drown it out.
But this blessing
cannot be turned back,
cannot be made
to still its voice,
to sing its praise
of the One who comes
along the way
©Jan Richardson, janrichardson.com
At The Spirit of Life, we work together in prayer and companionship to loosen the attitudes and brokenness which can hold us bound. We believe that God’s desire for us is that we be “Whole” and thus “Holy”… full of life , unfettered by life-destroying prejudices and free to move openly as the Spirit calls us.
Our belief in the sacredness of all created beings and loving relationships compels us to respond with care and compassion to all who are marginalized in our church and world. We invite you to come and to pray with us as we “do our own work” in growing into a deeper awareness of our own gifts and ‘growing edges’ and together create a community that invites diversity and honors the uniqueness of each individual and every journey. We are confident that you will feel welcome in the “home” of The Spirit of Life.
As we journey through these days of Holy Week, we pray that you may experience the Lover who calls you to intimacy and delight,
Ron & Jean
Holy Week: Please check the flyer attached above. And, our website: www.spiritoflifecommunity.org
Sunday ~ April 30th, Spiritual Discussion Group: Our discussion this evening will open with a presentation entitled: "Recovering Sacred Presence in a Disenchanted World" by Mary Coelho. Mary writes: “The "New Story Cosmology" has been aptly described as a " new way of seeing", a profoundly hopeful and enlivening integration of who we are in light of discoveries about the evolutionary Universe and our western contemplative tradition.” Mary is the author of Awakening Universe, Emerging Personhood (Wyndam Hall Press, 2001), which presents her study and reflections about the emerging New Story worldview. Her work underscores Thomas Berry's insight that "we will enter the future as a single sacred society or perish on the way". Mary has a Masters in biology and a Ph.D. in historical theology, for which she studied major western mystics. She is also a watercolorist and exhibits her landscapes, cityscapes and accordion books in the Northeast. Her website is: newuniversetory.com.
Please join us for what promises to be an informative and inspiring conversation!
Mary’s presentation will begin following our 5:00pm liturgy. Refreshments will be served; and as always….All are welcome!!
NuDay Syria is the recipient of our 15% charitable contribution for the April-June fiscal quarter. You may remember Nadia Alawi came to speak to our community about her work. NuDaySyria’s mission statement: One Person at a Time, One Humanity. All you have to do is care and want change in Syria to happen, and together we can help and make a difference. We focus on women with no male breadwinners and their families. Many of these women have crossed the border to avoid military and political persecution - only to find themselves in dire circumstances with few options to safeguard their children and themselves with dignity. We send aid into Syria and bordering countries, keeping the mothers and their priorities and needs in mind.
Nourish your Soul ~
Jean Marchant & Ron Hindelang
invite you to join us in creating
a Catholic Community of Worship & Service, Justice & Joy
Eucharist is celebrated weekly ~ Every Sunday Evening
4:00PM Eastern Standard Time/ 5:00PM Daylight Savings Time
The Congregational/UCC Church of Weston
welcomes us into their sacred space for our weekly Eucharist
130 Newton St., Weston, MA 02493
(Newton St. is located off Route 30, near Route 128 & 90
or from Route 20 follow School St., to Newton St.)
Note: Transportation is available from the Riverside T Station upon request.