Saturday, March 17, 2012

"when your eyes freeze behind the grey window"

I was thinking up some big post for St. Patrick's Day that included a passage from theologian James Mackey's wonderful book Christianity and Creation: The Essence of the Christian Faith and Its Future among Religions, which I have found imaginative (in the best possible sense), informative, erudite, and above all provocative on many levels, about each culture having its own Old Testament, followed by a reflection on Celtic culture. I was then going to proceed, using several sources in addition to Mackey in order get this point across, while reiterating the pan-Celtic nature of St. Patrick, a Welsh-speaking Celt, originally from Scotland, who came to Ireland as a slave from Britain and then returned as a missionary from Brittany. One of the additional sources I was going to use was the John O'Donohue, whose works, along with Mackey's, has been transformative for me over this past year or so.

As Bishop Wester reminded Fr. Silva and I this afternoon, man proposes, but God disposes. A more popular, not to mention Celtic way, of saying this is, "We plan and God laughs." Instead, being true to my prompting, I offer the late John O'Donohue reciting his poem "Beannacht," which means "Blessing" in Gaelic:

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