Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Awakened to love, with wild companions

What happens when your soul
Begins to awaken
Your eyes
And your heart
And the cells of your body
To the great Journey of Love? 

First there is wonderful laughter
And probably precious tears 

And a hundred sweet promises
And those heroic vows
No one can ever keep. 

But still God is delighted and amused
You once tried to be a saint. 

What happens when your soul
Begins to awake in this world 

To our deep need to love
And serve the Friend? 

O the Beloved
Will send you
One of His wonderful, wild companions –
Like Hafiz.

- Hafiz (1325-1390)

The Caritas XXIII Retreat in Montecito this past weekend has reawakened something deep within me: confidence that Christ is present whenever “two or three are gathered together in His name” (Mt 18:20). Forty-three retreatants, fifteen facilitators, and a host of other helpers gathered to help one another “discover. love. anew.”  Through obvious and subtle ways, with awed looks or beaming smiles, marked by bouts of laughter or tears of joy, many of us experienced something unforgettable. One person shared how his experience was "transformative" at several levels; another remarked that it was “literally the most incredible experience of [her] life”; a third shared that her sense of God has not only been renewed but taken a leap; a fourth observed that he was surprised to “fall in love with community” in such a short time. While our experiences were unique and personal, something was awakened within each of us.

As I enter my 8-day silent retreat, I am deeply grateful for the “wild companions” sent by God. I recall each of their faces with a smile, laughter, or tears of joy.

There is a deep longing in each of us: to take another step in our Journeys of Love. How joyous it is to be accompanied by wonderfully “wild companions.”

Who help(s) awaken you to genuine love? Seek their company…


  1. Hmmmmmmmmmm... We kinda look like the "Special Olympics" of retreatants in this silly picture! ;-P LOL Good times!

  2. God is mystery and yet God is also very near. May we all enjoy this touch of grace, especially for Fr.Tri during his 8-day of solitude with his Beloved.