We Will Have These Moments

With the words “Create a Blog Entry” facing me, and with this imperative striking me as a little demanding, a song came on the radio with the words “When other nights and other days will find us gone our separate ways, we will have these moments to remember.”

This reminded me that the Classes of ’90, ’91, and ’92 are having a joint reunion in mid-May. Organizers are Laura O’Herron, Pat Haggerty and Bryan Muench. I cannot match the organizers with their years of graduation, but at least now I can place those three in the decade that they graduated.

That means they and those who graduated with them are right around 40 years old. Welcome to middle age you guys. When I started middle age, people would ask me what grade I was in. About two years later I was being given senior discounts at restaurants. Amazing what hair color can do for or against you.It’s almost as if I skipped middle age and went from teenager right to collecting social security benefits. Yet when I went to a class reunion of my high school class just after my hair went gray, I kept being told that I hadn’t changed at all. Maybe my classmates meant I still acted as if I were still in high school. I don’t know, but probably they meant that I was still as skinny as the day I graduated.

The part of our reunion that I enjoyed most was not something one would normally think of when considering a reunion. A small contingent of us visited the parents of three of our classmates who had died. It was wonderful to talk to these parents about their children, and they were so appreciative of our visit.

I hope there is a good turnout by the early Seton ’90ers. It might be something that one would never expect that might be the best part of the weekend. 

I missed posting the next part of the Divine Providence series. Here is Part IV.

A powerful image for the Providence of God

(Fourth of five parts)

Diamond, the boy in the story, struggles to understand because he only sees the tragedy which is about to happen. He is only listening to the dark melody without being aware of the core melody, the one who is actually being played at the very same time, because it is more fundamental, stronger and more beautiful than the sad melody.

The boy needs to learn how to listen more deeply and to trust that even when unable to fully listen to the core melody or to distinguish it from the painful one, the joyful melody will ultimately prevail, perhaps at a time beyond the own time that is given to him. We find ourselves being portrayed in the boy, because we often listen to the dark melody of suffering and pain, while unable to delight in the deeper melody, the one of true joy and ultimate happiness. It is only beyond the veil of time that we will be able to fully listen and understand. When we read the accounts of the death of great saints, we often find that their agonies were bitter and painful, and up to the point of their actual deaths their faces were clouded and even darkened by suffering, but at the very moment of their death and immediately after it, their faces change and are transfigured in such a way that they shine with the beauty and joy of childhood. Let me quote just one of such episodes. Mother Agnes of Jesus, a Carmelite nun who was one of the blood sisters of Saint Therese describes the death of the saint in a detailed way: “I was alone with her about 4:30 in the afternoon. I thought her end was approaching when I saw a sudden pallor in her face . . . Her face was flushed, her hands purple and her feet were as cold as ice . . . When trying to catch her breath, she uttered little cries . . . Suddenly her eyes came to life and were fixed on a spot just a little above the statue of the Blessed Virgin. Her face took on the appearance it had when Therese enjoyed good health. She seemed to be in ecstasy . . . Then she closed her eyes and expired. It was 7:20 in the evening. Her head was leaning to the right. A mysterious smile was on her lips. She appeared very beautiful.” Such testimony is confirmed in the photograph taken by Mother Marie of the Sacred Heart after her sister’s death. When the veil of death was torn, Therese was able to listen clearly and distinctly to the glorious melody; she was led by the loving hand and contemplated the beautiful face of the Divine musician, whose music will only be played in its entire splendor and magnificence at the end of times.

Divine Providence is the infinite power of God through which He directs our entire lives towards the final embrace of eternal communion with him in Heaven. But we need to trust in him, day in and day out. We need to entrust our lives to him in this world, and even in the midst of suffering or darkness, to be fully convicted that we are being led in love by the hand that created the beauty of the universe, the hand of the Divine artist who often uses the sharp chisel of suffering to shape the features of our own faces, after the image of our true faces as they already shine in beauty within his Divine mind and heart.

To be concluded next week.

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