Tuesday, August 28, 2007

More Truth About Mother Teresa(A Unexpected Beacon for Many of US)

I cannot wait to get the book about Mother Teresa's and her private thoughts to her confessors and spiritual counselors. I think some in the media have missed the story here. Her struggles are a inspiration to many of us. Like we see in the Psalms, many of us endure the absence of feeling God's presence.

I think this often has to do with a combination of the media and people we know. We should never mistake the Spiritual highs and Ecstasies of people we see and know as the norm of a Christian life. I truly think that is one of the biggest errors people make. Can we be honest here. I think we all look at awe and yes sometimes even annoyance at people that are always talking about their closeness to God and how they can feel him 24/7. I have no doubt it true. However this book screams to me that yes I am not alone at times. God is full of surprises and has found a way for one of his Saints to be a beacon to many of us that we did not expect.

The Ratizinger Forum has two great articles. On this thread check out the story that is translated from a great article in a Italian Newspaper( it is the ninth one down). In fact that whole page is great.

Father Cantalamessa who is the Preacher to the Pope and his house hold and also a blogger has a great interview with Vatican Radio. Zenith News has an overview of that. I shall post that here.

Mother Teresa's Dark Night Unique, Says Preacher
Father Cantalamessa Calls Her Saint of the Media Age

VATICAN CITY, AUG. 27, 2007 (
Zenit.org).- Blessed Mother Teresa of Calcutta's dark night of the soul kept her from being a victim of the media age and exalting herself, says the preacher of the Pontifical Household.Capuchin Father Raniero Cantalamessa said this in an interview with Vatican Radio, commenting on previously unpublished letters from Mother Teresa, now made public in Doubleday's book "Mother Teresa: Come Be My Light," edited by Father Brian Kolodiejchuk, postulator of the cause of Mother Teresa's canonization.

In one of her letters, Mother Teresa wrote: "There is so much contradiction in my soul. Such deep longing for God -- so deep that it is painful -- a suffering continual -- and yet not wanted by God -- repulsed -- empty -- no faith -- no love -- no zeal. Souls hold no attraction. Heaven means nothing -- to me it looks like an empty place."Father Cantalamessa explained that the fact that Mother Teresa suffered deeply from her feeling of the absence of God affirms that it was a positive phenomenon. Atheists, he contended, are not afflicted by God's absence but, "for Mother Teresa, this was the most terrible test that she could have experienced."He further clarified that "it is the presence-absence of God: God is present but one does not experience his presence."

Martyrdom Father Cantalamessa contended that Mother Teresa's spiritual suffering makes her even greater. He said: "The fact that Mother Teresa was able to remain for hours in front of the Blessed Sacrament, as many eye-witnesses have testified, as if enraptured … if one thinks about the condition she was in at that moment, that is martyrdom!"Because of this, for me, the figure of Mother Teresa is even greater; it does not diminish her."The Capuchin priest further lauded Mother Teresa's ability to keep her spiritual pain hidden within her. "Maybe, this was done in expiation for the widespread atheism in today's world," he said, adding that she lived her experience of the absence of God "in a positive way -- with faith, with God.

"Not scandalous Father Cantalamessa affirmed that Mother Teresa's dark night should not scandalize or surprise anyone. The "dark night," he said, "is something well-known in the Christian tradition; maybe new and unheard of in the way Mother Teresa experienced it."He added: "While 'the dark night of the spirit' of St. John of the Cross is a generally preparatory period for that definitive one called 'unitive,' for Mother Teresa it seems that it was one stable state, from a certain point in her life, when she began this great work of charity, until the end."In my view, the fact of this prolongation of the 'night' has meaning for us today. I believe that Mother Teresa is the saint of the media age, because this 'night of the spirit' protected her from being a victim of the media, namely from exalting herself."In fact, she used to say that when she received great awards and praise from the media, she did not feel anything because of this interior emptiness."

How wonderful!!!!

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