When the centurion, who stood there in front of Jesus, saw how he died, he said,
“Surely this man was the Son of God!”
When I was seventeen years old and had just graduated from High School, I entered a Catholic community—a religious order—called the Jesuits. If you ever go up along the Hudson river just past the city of Poughkeepsie on Route 9, you’ll see “The Culinary Institute of America.” That is where I lived for four years when it was a seminary. The large, red brick building faces the river, high above what we call palisades.
On the path to the river, there used to be a large crucifix: that’s a cross with a carving of the body of Jesus on it. We used to stop for a moment to pray at that spot. The cross had a little roof over it to protect it from the weather. Just beneath that roof there was this saying: “From the arms of the Crucified, the breath of peace moves slowly across the world.”
As you read the story of Jesus’ death on the cross, may you feel that silent breath of the dying Jesus, amid all the shouting and commotion that must have been going on around him. There’s that idea of silence again…When there’s lots of noise about you that threatens to take away your peace—maybe the noise of other people talking selfishly—may you feel that silence of Jesus inside you, becoming aware of your own breathing that is joined to the Spirit of Jesus.
Here is a sample of a seven-syllable breath-prayer
from today’s reading:
Breath of peace across the world
For more information about
this creative way to pray, see Bible Breaths.
This is the twelfth of thirteen weeks in the season of Kingdomtide,
autumn in the north. Year B.
Fridays are dedicated to the New Testament, except the Gospels.
We read the Gospel of Mark in Year B.
These Firestarters are from a new edition of The Bible Through the Seasons being developed for families with children. For the Firestarters in the original edition, I recommend the ebook. You will have the entire program of well over a thousand Firestarters with you on your phone or tablet. More information…