Friday, April 07, 2006

Free Weekend

This is my free weekend...the last of the experiment. Next week I work the overnight on Holy Saturday and the following week I shall reunite with my beloved Anne Hall. The following week is the Open House for our new community and, the week after that, I head back to sunny Detroit.

So, since this is my last "obligation free" weekend, it stands to reason that I feel lousy. I managed to dodge the cold that wound its way through our house two months ago and I thought I'd dodged the flu bullet, but I'm not so sure now. I've had a headache for two days and I'm just not feeling too great. I'm hoping to get a good night of sleep and feel better in the morning - Drew, Mike, and Eric are in from Detroit and I'd like to spend the day with them.

I want, before I go to bed, to offer an image that I use when I pray for patients. Sometimes in the silence I find myself imagining myself standing in an ocean of darkness, an ebony night that wraps around me. I hold in my hands the patient for whom I am praying and I commend that patient into the Divine Darkness surrounding me, the living night which consumes death itself. Given my special love for the theology of Karl Rahner, SJ, I pray that he be present with the patient, a guide into the very heart of God. In prayer I submerge my whole self into the inky stillness of God's silent presence and I pray that God guide and draw close to him or her.

I don't claim that Karl bears the sole responsibility, but I will report that both the baby I baptized last week and a 12-year old boy who coded on the table are still alive even when no one thought they would make it. Many aver that Rahner will never be made a saint of the church...and I suspect that it's an honor he would not have wanted. He was and is still a guide into the very life of God's love, a mystic of the every day life, and a theologian who tried to transmit to all the world his own experience of God's love and grace. It is to this man - a teacher of theology and a teacher of prayer - that I commend my patients and, one day, it is next to this man I hope to kneel in prayer for all eternity.

Karl Rahner, Pray for Us!
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