Love After Love


Love After Love

The day will come

the time will come

when with elation

you will greet yourself

arriving at your own door

and each will smile at each other’s welcome

saying sit here, eat

you will love again the stranger who was yourself

Give wine, give bread

give back your heart to yourself

to the stranger who has loved you all your life

who you ignored for another

who knows you by heart

Take down the love letters from the bookshelf,

the photographs, the desperate notes

feel your own image in the mirror, see it

Feast on your life.

Derek Walcott

Another year has past! This month is the  anniversary of our  coming to San Francisco! I came with the ambition of building an agency, becoming known, simply because I could not face myself. I have two doctorates, two master’s degrees–all to build up my own image, to gain acceptance, to be “liked”.

But in these years I have come face to face with myself. In each young person I face I see myself, in each person whose hand I hold, I see myself, in each person I see overcome with drug abuse, depression, and broken, I see myself. In each person I bury I see myself. That is why in hanging out with these guys, in working with them, I am one with them.  Recently, someone asked 16 year old Stacey, on the Haight,”Who is that guy?” , and his reply–“Oh he is one of us,” not the priest, but “one of us”. 

In looking  myself in the face, the words of Carl Jung ring true:

“That I feed the hungry, that I forgive an insult, that I love my enemy in the name of Christ–all these are undoubtedly great virtues.  What I do unto the least of my brethren, that I do unto Christ.  But what if I should discover that the least among them all, the poorest of all beggars, the most impudent of all the offenders, the very enemy himself–that these are within me, and that I myself stand in need of the alms of my own kindness–that I myself am the enemy who must be loved–what then?”

What then? For me I can not sit in judgment, but simply love the other as myself. And loving myself is not easy, for to love myself, I face my own limitations each day. I am broken, I am a failure in many ways, and  in acknowledging that I come to love myself and in doing so am able to love others more fully.

  These are hard words, for it means facing our own limitations, and embracing the other.

We are hosting a Reception

At St. Luke’s Episcopal Church

1755 Clay Street

San Francisco, CA 94109

Sunday, October 8, 2017

In Thanksgiving

For Our Ministry in San Francisco, CA

11:30 a.m. ( worship is at 10:00 a.m.)

Veni Creator Spiritus. Come Creator Spirit.

Fr. River Damien Sims, sfw, D.Min., D.S.T.

Temenos Catholic Worker, Franciscans Against the Death Penalty

P.O. Box 642656

San Francisco, CA 94164



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