Wednesday, April 27, 2011

The feast day of St Louis deMontfort

On April 28, the Roman Catholic Church celebrates the feast day of St Louis deMontfort.

Many know him as the Apostle of Mary.  Pope John Paul II’s life took a “decisive turn” due to the writings of this saint.  Three congregations of priests, brothers, and sisters were founded by this holy man.

He is St Louis deMontfort, born in France in 1673.  A preacher of the Gospel, a devotee of Mary Mother of Jesus, a disciple of Jesus Christ, Incarnate Wisdom.

Montfort was a preacher, poet, artist, and missionary priest.  With Blessed Marie Louise Trichet he founded the congregation of the Daughters of Wisdom. Montfort’s poem to the Daughters of Wisdom urges them to serve the poorest of the poor and to love God who lives in their neighbor.

Montfort’s message is over 300 years old yet it continues to challenge us today.

His spiritual legacy lives on in thousands of followers worldwide and in Wisdom House Retreat Center, Litchfield, CT.  Visit and  The international website is

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Lighting Candles, Rami Shapiro

We live largely in the dark. Even at high noon most of the universe is dark. Even when convinced of this or that truth, Truth itself eludes us. We don’t know more than we can know; we don’t see more than we can see; we don’t control far more than we can control. Indeed, 23% of the universe is dark matter, and 73% of the total mass-energy of the universe is dark energy. Literally, then, as well as metaphorically, we live in the dark.

Because we live in the dark, we light fires: bon fires, camp fires, and cooking fires, etc. Because we live in the dark, we light candles: prayer candles, memorial candles, birthday candles, etc. Fire is how we push back the dark a bit, and that is why we light it.

Every Friday evening my wife and I light Shabbat candles. We light these candles to push back the encroaching order of the week to make room for the chaos of Shabbat. Most people imagine that chaos is their enemy, I suggest the enemy is too much order, too many rules, too rigid forms. All week long we are forced to order our lives according to the fixed rules of school, job, and society at large. By the time the Sabbath arrives we are so conformed to the structures around us, that we have lost sight of the creative chaos within us. Order threatens creativity, chaos enlivens it. So we kindle the Sabbath lights to make room for chaos and creativity, and spend a day in prayer and play.

When I light a candle in memory of the dead, I push back the darkness of forgetfulness. As I light the candle I remember the life I am honoring, not the death with which it concluded. To light a candle for the dead is to recall them to life, to push back the shadow of grief and loss, and shed light on the life of the one that you love.

Next month I will celebrate my sixtieth birthday. Birthday candles mark the passing of years and the approach of death, and yet the more candles we have the more light we bring to the world. Birthday candles suggest that we burn more brightly as we burn up. A wonderful message!I plan to light 61 candles, and spend a moment marveling at the light. I won’t blow them out, but rather let them burn themselves out. This is how I hope to die: burned out not blown out. I want to burn out, to burn up, to leave nothing behind. I don’t want to be blown out while there is still wax and wick to be consumed by the flame.

So we light candles to push back the dark, to celebrate creativity, chaos, and change, to remember our mortality, and to share as much light as we can before we are utterly consumed by the greater darkness in which we live.

Saturday, April 23, 2011


I have been looking for a reason to thaw,

to unfold into the truth.

Petals of perfection

stretch into the light,

Intoxicate the eye,

And relax in resurrection.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Reflection on Genesis 1, 1-19 for EARTH DAY ( April 22)

The Bible's story of the creation of the world is a very popular story. It is a beautiful narration of God's creating in seven days, and it is also a story which has caused much discord and argument among people. The argument is based on whether or not God created exactly the way it is written in the Bible.

The story of creation, however, is written for our inspiration and our amazement at God's wonderful kindness toward us. This world is an expression of God's love and greatness, and it is given to us for care and protection. This Genesis section of the creation story tells us about the first four days of creation. The term "day" is not a 24-hour period as we know it in our time. A "day," rather, indicates a season or period of time of some unknown duration.

In the first three "days" of creation, God creates light, water, earth. On the fourth day, God creates galaxies with sun, moon, and stars. This fourth day seems to have special significance for the balance of our universe. The sun and moon give the rhythm of day and night, of season and of balance in the universe. It is the sun and moon which regulate the motion of the planet and which even influence some patterns of emotion and
health in us humans and all other living beings. To all of this, we, too, can say with God "how good it is."

Let us be grateful for Earth and the ever expanding universe that gives us cause for amazement and wonder. These are the beginning of wisdom.

--Rosemarie Greco, DW

Monday, April 18, 2011

Good Friday: 'A Position of the Heart'

A Position of the Heart

He seduced the Cross

into making love.

He coaxed it,

pressed it to himself

Until it was difficult to see

which had initiated

the embrace,

which was making

the offering.

And which one had

actually given in.

--JoAnn Iannotti, OPW

Sunday, April 17, 2011

In Extremis by artist Harvey Offenhartz

Please click on the link below to view the art exhibit opening of Harvey Offenhartz at Wisdom House.  Video is courtesy of Doug Parker.

In Extremis by Harvey Offenhartz

Friday, April 15, 2011

That We Can Change

God does not love us if we change. God loves us so that we can change. (Richard Rohr, OFM)

Thursday, April 14, 2011

What We Need Is Here

Geese appear high over us,

pass, and the sky closses. Abandon,

as in love or sleep, holds

them to their way, clear

in the ancient faith : what we need

is here. And we pray, not

for new earth or heaven, but tobe

quiet in heart, and in eay,

clear. What we need is here.

Wendell Berry

Monday, April 11, 2011

Earth Day 2011: 'A Billion Acts of Green'

In recognition of the power of millions of individual actions, Earth Day 2011 will be organized around A Billion Acts of Green®: personal, organizational and corporate pledges to live and act sustainably. At over 42 million actions to date, the Billion Acts of Green® campaign – the largest environmental service campaign in the world – is steadily building commitments by individuals, corporations, and governments in honor of Earth Day.

A Billion Acts of Green® inspires and rewards both simple individual acts and larger organizational initiatives that further the goal of measurably reducing carbon emissions and supporting sustainability. The goal is to register one billion actions in advance of the Earth Summit in Rio in 2012.

The A Billion Acts of Green® website quantifies acts of green through an easy-to-use online registration tool. A Billion Acts of Green® demonstrates the kind of environmental impact that can be made when millions of people, corporations and organizations make commitments, both small and large, to better their environment.
Elements of the 2011 Earth Day campaign include:
  • Athletes for the Earth: Bringing the voices of Olympic and professional athletes to the environmental movement
  • Trees for the Earth: Supporting global reforestation
  • Green Schools: Greening America’s Schools within a Generation
  • Women and Green Economy (WAGE)™: Engaging women leaders in the creation and development of a global green economy
  • Creating Climate Wealth: Convening 200 of the world’s entrepreneurs to solve climate change and create a new green economy
  • Arts for the Earth: Celebrating the work of environmental artists in all media, and partnering with the American Association of Museums to bring sustainability to museums nationwide

Click here for more information and for useful links.

Saturday, April 9, 2011

More Mobile Than any Motion

Wisdom is more mobile than any motion; because of her purity, she pervades and penetrates all things. (Wisdom 7,24).

(Glass work of Dale Chihuly, Chihuly Collection,Morean Art Center St.Petersburg, Florida)

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Protecting the Earth's Vitality

The protection of Earth's vitality, diversity, and beauty is a sacred trust.

Earth Charter