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Tag Archives: mercy

Good Friday

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The power of God’s mercy has taken hold of us and will not let go of us: therefore we have become foolish.  We can no longer love wisely.  And because we have emptied ourselves in this folly which He has sent upon us, we can be moved by His unpredictable wisdom, so that we love whom we love and we help whom we help, not according to plans of our own but according to the measure laid down for us in His hidden will, which knows no measure.  In this folly, which is the work of His Spirit, we must love especially those who are helpless and who can do nothing for themselves.  We must also receive love from them, realizing our own helplessness, and our own inability to fend for ourselves. . . . Mercy fulfills the whole law [Thomas Merton, Seasons of Celebration, 181]


Two others also, who were criminals, were led away to be put to death with him. . . . One of the criminals who were hanged there kept deriding him and saying, “Are you not the Messiah?  Save yourself and us!”  But the other rebuked him, saying, “Do you not fear God, since you are under the same sentence of condemnation?  And we indeed have been condemned justly, for we are getting what we deserve for our deeds, but this man has done nothing wrong.”  Then he said, “Jesus, remember me when you come into your kingdom.”   He replied, “Truly I tell you, today you will be with me in Paradise.”

Luke 23:32, 39-43

Friday in the Fifth Week of Lent

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Thomas Merton, Seasons of Celebration, 178-179:


The chesed of God is a gratuitous mercy that considers no fitness, no worthiness and no return.  It is the way the Lord looks upon the guilty and with His look makes them at once innocent.  This look seems to some to be anger because they fly from it.  But if they face it, they see that it is love and that they are innocent.  (Their flight and their confusion of their own fear make them guilty in their own eyes.)  The chesed of God is truth.  It is infallible strength.  It is the love by which he seeks and chooses his chosen, and binds them to Himself.  It is the love by which He is married to mankind, so that, if humanity is faithless to Him, it must still always have fidelity to which to return: that is His own fidelity.  He has become inseparable from man in the chesed which we call “incarnation,” and “Cross” and “Resurrection.”  He has also given us His chesed in the Person of His spirit.  The Paraclete is the full, inexpressible mystery of chesed. So that in the depths of our own being there is an inexhaustible spring of mercy and love.  Our own being has become love.  Our own self has become God’s love for us, and it is full Christ, of chesed. But we must be to ourselves and to others signs and sacraments of mercy.

subtle dance of grace

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Grace is subtle

Grace is the substance of love, forgiveness, and hope.

Mary L. Fraser writes that grace would be

“like mercy running across the planet,

from Darfur to Sri Lanka.”

The Lenten Prayer of St. Ephrem the Syrian

O Lord and Master of my life! Take from me the spirit of sloth, faint-heartedness, lust of power, and idle talk.  But give rather the spirit of  chastity, humility, patience, and love to Thy servant. Yea, O Lord and King! Grant me to see my own errors and not to judge my brother; For Thou art blessed unto ages of ages. Amen

St. Ephrem (also spelt Ephraem) the Syrian was a deacon who wrote his reflections almost exclusively in poetry, in the Syriac Aramaic language which was a dialect of the same language spoken by Our Lord and the apostles.