Friday, August 15, 2014

Feast of the Assumption: Wracked with an ineluctable longing

Mary, Seat of Wisdom
12th century
Mabon Madonna at St. John's Abbey

" imagination is caught — not by Revelation’s dragons and diadems, or John the Baptist leaping in Elizabeth’s womb, or even the queen draped in gold of Ophir — but by the woman in labor. I can feel my body recall the times I labored to give birth to my sons.

To be in labor is to yearn with your entire being, to be wracked by an ineluctable longing to come face-to-face with what has been kindled within you...Mary once labored to bring God’s hidden face to light, so that we now might yearn with all our being to see the face of the God of Abraham and of Jacob."

— From a reflection for the Feast in Give Us This Day

I've been humming the Alsott setting of Psalm 45 under my breath off and on all day, preparing to cantor tomorrow.  I've been thinking about young people joyously going off, and about how much I will miss them.  I've been meditating on longing.  What do we desire? My oldest, wrung from me so many years ago, comes home for a few days tomorrow.  I long to see him.

I pray for friends who long to see children they have lost.  Lost to addiction. To illness. To accident. To war.  To violence. To suicide.

I pray to learn from all of this how to yearn more and more deeply to see God's face.


  1. Wow, Michelle. "To be wracked by an ineluctable longing to come face-to-face with what has been kindled within you..." I'm going to have to chew on that for a few weeks. Thank you.

    1. Thank Her Holy Wisdom for that one...

  2. another wonderful reflection, Michelle.

  3. Thank you, Allison!

  4. What a joy it is to "yearn with all our being" to see our Lord - and yet it is not an easy waiting. Thank you for this beautiful reflection.

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