Contemplation at the Foot of the Cross and Healing
Lourdes explains contemplation, how to enter it at the foot of the Cross, and the process of healing our wounds. She gave this talk to the Third Order of the Contemplatives of St. Joseph.
The foot of the Cross, Ch 2
ST. BRUNO AND OUR FEAR OF SILENCE
by Fr. Billy Swan, October 6, 2021
To face oneself in stillness is an essential exercise of knowing our true selves and knowing God.
We can only know ourselves by facing ourselves once we’ve stopped running from ourselves.
When St Augustine did manage to enter into himself in silence, not all he saw was pretty: “Lord, you turned my attention back to myself. . . . And I looked and was appalled. . . . You thrust me before my own eyes so that I should discover my iniquity and hate it”
Silence is also the space in which God reveals himself. Into this silence, he speaks his word. Immersed in silence, we listen to God with “the ears of the heart” (St. Benedict, The Rule).
At the Cross We Begin to See —Diary of a MOC. p.30
Mary immediately turns your gaze to My crucified Love, but many cannot see Me because their eyes are covered by the darkness of sin. Mary, your advocate, and Spouse of the Holy Spirit, immediately calls upon My Spirit to come to the aid of your soul. The planks of pride, self-love, vanity, and sins of all kinds are revealed to you by the Holy Spirit. It is here at My feet, through the gift of repentance, that you begin to see. Grace builds upon grace, but also, each grace removes a veil that keeps the eyes of your soul from seeing the glory of God before you and the darkness that keeps you from hearing the whisper of God within you. (12/12/11)
We discovered that the silence embraced by St. Bruno and lived by the Carthusian monks becomes not a burden but the space in which we can know ourselves more deeply and know God better. Free from distractions and noise, it leads us deeper into reality and all that is true. (St Bruno and Our Fear of Silence)
Transformation is in the HEART
837 references in the Bible to heart
How do we go deeper?
Mt 7:7 “Ask, and it will be given you; search, and you will find; knock, and the door will be opened for you.”
Humbly kiss and adore the feet of our Lord asking for the gift of knowledge, which is twofold: Knowledge of GOD and Knowledge of SELF.
Seek true sorrow for our sins, the “gold of precious repentance”.
You enter the Cross through the gate of My Mother. She accompanies you to the foot of the Cross to kiss My pierced and wounded feet. This first encounter is the awakening of your soul. It is through this act of humble love, in imitation of My Mother, in which you receive the gift of knowledge, therefore, receiving the gold of precious repentance.
2. Vulnerable & Intimacy
Pope Benedict XVI, Path p.32:
…He kneels before us and carries out for us the service of a slave: He washes our dirty feet so that we might be admitted to the banquet and be made worthy to take our place at His table… The basin that purifies us is God himself, who gives Himself to us without reserve to the very depths of His suffering and His death. … The Lord's love knows no bounds, but man can put a limit on it.
Self-knowledge > Repentance > Humility
…Souls advance from this part of My Path (My feet), depending on their docility to the lights of the Holy Spirit on their many patterns of sin... The soul that and is then able to advance in My path on the wings of the Holy Spirit. Simple Path #10, 40
The soul which receives the gift of self-knowledge and sees the hardness of its own heart arrives at a: It either accepts the gift or remains in darkness. Receiving the gift of self-knowledge hurts; it feels like a . P.44
For the word of God is living and active, sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing to the division of soul and spirit, of joints and marrow, and discerning the thoughts and intentions of the heart. And before Him no creature is hidden, but all are open and laid bare to the eyes of Him with whom we have to do.
Sins are like weeds- 2-C
II. Chapter 3- passage Through the Pierced Side of Jesus
Suffer with Him
our own hearts are purified by direct contact with His wounds
St Thomas- By touching His wounds, we touch His love, the love by which He laid down His life for us.
—How Do We Touch His Wounds?— p.87
We touch Christ’s wounds by uniting our sufferings with His. This is the necessary process to union with God. St Paul tells us that there is a condition for us to be “children of God” and “fellow heirs with Christ”: “provided we suffer with Him.” (Rom 8:12-17)
…The Cross, without My Sacred Heart, is useless suffering brought about by sin. But suffering united to My Cross is new life; it is participation in the work of redemption, which is participation in the life of the Trinity…
When we suffer with someone, our focus is not on ourselves but on the other. P.89
Enter into the suffering with the other
Wound- anger, resentment, hatred, self-pity, revenge
I suffered abandonment so that you could enter into the fullness of life in the Blessed Trinity, living in the loving embrace of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. I call you, My family of LC, to suffer all with Me so that you can serve as My balm to alleviate My pangs of seeing so many of My children, especially My consecrated souls, abandon Me. At the same time, as My disciples of reparation, your suffering as one with Me saves many from the fires of Gehenna. (Simple Path, #30, p.93)
Tendency- self-absorbed in our sufferings
Core- pure pain
I Desire and Need for You to Suffer with Me —Diary of a MOC. p.96
Why do I desire and need for you to suffer with Me? It is through My suffering that you come to know Love. Love is purified in suffering, but My suffering is pure love; therefore, when you suffer with Me, your love is purified in Me. This suffering with Me and loving with Me brings new life, a new creation.
By allowing all suffering to draw you into My sufferings and sorrows, you will come to know Love.My Sacred Heart is pure love. You were created for Love; but how few, My little one, come to know Love and enter the joy of living in Love. (8/27/11)
Acceptance of Suffering —Diary of a MOC.
This is most pleasing to Me. Trust, for there isn't a suffering I permit that will not bring you into the union of love I desire. Trust in the power of suffering all as ONE with Me. It is this power that will set the world on fire with My Spirit. (7/9/12)
Will You Suffer with Me to Save Souls? —Diary of a MOC. p.99
Will you suffer with Me? Will you unite with My suffering to purchase the redemption of many? You see, My suffering and resurrection have purchased the salvation of the world; but My Father, from the beginning of time, willed for the fulfillment of salvation to come through My Body, the Church. Therefore, the salvation of many souls is dependent on your response to suffer with Me. (11/10/10)
—How Our Wounds Are Healed— p.105
Only Jesus’ wounds heal
We acknowledge that we are wounded and seek to know our wounds
We have repressed our wounds and placed them in our dark room
God the Father taught St. Catherine of Siena that we must work hard to bring to the “throne of conscience” what is hidden in us.
Discovering our disorders helps us reach our wounds
A disorder is any behavior that is not virtuous, including bad attitudes
attentive to how we think and feel in situations that trigger those bad attitudes and disorders in us.These include discomfort, anxiety, fear, anger…
example, we come in contact with authoritarian and demanding persons and we find that our reaction is to avoid them by running away. We find that we feel fear, insecurity, and inadequacy. Another example: we notice that we are unable to say “no” when we should; then we feel resentment, anger, frustration because we acted just to please.
Re-live memories & allow emotions to surface
taught since childhood not to show any negative emotions, therefore, we stuffed them, but they still oppress us in many different ways.
acknowledge that we have them (our anger, resentment, hatred, frustration, irritation…) and expose them all, making ourselves naked before Jesus crucified, asking Him to take them from us. “We submit every thought to Christ” (2 Cor. 10:5).
Underneath the negative emotions lies the pure pain of our core wound.
Name the wound
“I was not loved; I was not appreciated nor accepted for who I am; I did not count; I was rejected, ignored, abused, forgotten, unwanted or, ridiculed.”
Feel the pure pain and unite it to Jesus’ pain
Suffer all with Me —Diary of a MOC. p.123