Living the Dream
When a person new to Magnificat in fall was asked how things were going, she responded: I’m living the dream! Truly to interact daily with our students as administrators, teachers and staff who model our values and ideals and to contribute to the learning, leading and serving of our girls is to “live the dream.” Contributing to an environment of collaboration and effective care for others is a holy work.
In another sense the saints are living their dream. It is that life that our deceased relatives and friends are living. Imagination can serve us in anticipating “the life to come.” We can picture them basking in the outpouring of Divine Love. We can imagine them with their deepest desires inspired by the Holy Spirit now come to fruition. We can image them living their dreams to the max.
What are those saints doing up there? More of the same wonderful work they were doing here on earth. If they were providing pastoral care, their outreach has an infinite reach. If they were giving comfort to the sorrowful, they now pour endless compassion unlimited by time and space.
Living the life to come is living abundant life, the rich life that Jesus offers us in the Gospels if we come to Him to have life. This is a life that cares about all created life.
We can get close to an edge of heaven in so many ways: through our participation in the Eucharist; through daily prayer of praise or thanksgiving or adoration or contrition or petition. These prayers knock on doors that Jesus promised to open when He hears that knock.
At Magnificat in August, the nationally noted artist, Brother Michael McGrath, presented interpretations of the lives of the following holy women: Mary and Elizabeth (Cf. Luke’s Gospel, Ch. 1.); Catherine of Sienna, Therese of Lisieux, Hildegard of Bingen, Dorothy Day and Thea Bowman, each associated with one of our values.
With which woman would you associate any one of our values:
Respect; Collaboration; Commitment; Compassion; Faith-filled Life; Life-long Learning.
Of course in one sense all of these great women live all these values. In a multi-cultural interpretation of “The Visitation,” Brother Michael McGrath (Cf. Bromickeymcgrath.com) shared the depiction available on his website and so apt for the living room in the convent of sisters ministering in a multi-cultural setting. How does this depiction convey “holiness”?
Surely Catherine of Sienna, Teresa of Avila, Hildegard of Bingen and Therese of Lisieux, all Doctors of the Church, are paradigmatic figures, exceptional in their influence in their time and place, and extraordinary in their visionary experiences. Happily, the panorama of All Saints includes every person living “creative fidelity in everyday life.” It enwraps the entire Cloud of Witnesses through history.
In Blessed Among All Women, Robert Ellsberg associates women saints (and others) with one or another of the Beatitudes. Revisit the Beatitudes in Chapter 5:3-10 of Matthew and then reflect on how one or another applies to people you know.
Believe it or not, we have the chance” to render visible the Presence of God in the World.” Go to it! Let us intentionally bear “witness to our companionship in the Spirit throughout time and space” (Cf. Friends of God and Prophets). Just as in the early Church there were the saints of Corinth, the saints of Rome, the saints of Ephesus, there are now the saints of Cleveland, the saints of Rocky River, the saints of Strongsville and outward. So we are truly saints among the Saints. It is the HOLY Spirit Who makes us holy. Simply say Yes to the promptings of that Spirit each day, each minute, and begin living the life to come.
Fill me with Your Life, Your grace.
Be pre-occupying and sanctifying Presence.