Archive for June, 2018

SHARING THE JOY OF A LOVELY FEAST

June 18, 2018

Recent days here in Yogyakarta have been so lovely. We have all been blessed by the celebration of Idul Fitri, the day that marks the end of Ramadan. The day before Idul Fitri we gave out parcels to our neighbours. That evening prayers rang out from the mosque turning all of our thoughts to God. It was touching to hear the voices of children from time to time. We spent Friday morning walking round the village wishing our neighbours a happy Idul Fitri and making mutual apologies for any mistakes made in the last year. A beautiful atmosphere of peace and calm has pervaded the village for the last four days.  How lovely to celebrate this special feast with our Muslim neighbours.

THE JOY OF REUNION…

June 13, 2018

Several days ago I travelled back to Yogyakarta by plane. Most of the travellers were women who worked abroad and were coming home to celebrate Idul Fitri with their families. It was touching to hear some of their stories. Some of the women hadn’t been home for several years and were longing to see their loved ones again. Many tears were shed as the women met their families. It was so good to be there and to witness the beauty of family love so vividly expressed in the excitement and joy of families newly reunited.

Rejoice and be Glad: Where do you find security?

June 8, 2018

blessed-are-the-poor-in-spirit1

In reflecting on this beatitude in Gaudete et Exsultate (Rejoice and be glad) Pope Francis asks the question “where do we find our security?”

Building security for ourselves, making our own ground stable gives us the freedom to stop focussing on ourselves and to focus outwards to others, but as with most things it has a flip side – the security itself can become our idol – so that we become so fearful of anyone or anything disturbing our security that we are no longer open to others.

Pope Francis likens the spirit of this beatitude to the Ignatian understanding of Inner Freedom – to become free and not enslaved by wealth, possessions, securities etc so as to be open to the presence of God in our everyday life and experience.

 

PRAYING THE ROSARY WITH OUR NEIGHBOURS

June 3, 2018

Recently in our Basic Ecclesial Community we closed the month of May in great style. It was the last of the nightly rosaries that had taken place in a different family each evening. There were forty of us, including seven children. The children led us through the rosary. One of them led the prayers and the others took turns to read an introduction to each mystery. Following the prayer we had a delicious supper together. It was simply beautiful – a lovely way of being part of the Universal Church.