Walk In Love!

January 4, 2020

Walk in Love!

“Therefore be imitators of God, as beloved children and walk in love, as Christ loved us. And gave himself for us, a fragrant offering and sacrifice to God.” Ephesians 5:1-2 ESV

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    On a bright day in late April, birds singing, the smell of new life in the air, the Board of Ordained Ministry, voted to ordain me to ministry. In the summary statement of the interview committee was the comment: “He is young, so we understand why River does not truly understand the darkness of evil in life, but as he ages, he will grow in that knowledge.”

    Eight years later on a cold night in Hollywood I came face to face with evil in holding a knife to a man’s throat, who  attempted to rape me. I caught myself. dropped the knife, and  walked away.

    That moment, the moment in which I came close to killing  someone, haunted me, and still haunts me. For the first time I saw how evil we can become. I pulled away, but facing the reality it was still within me.

    Two years later on Polk Street, eighteen year old Sean commented, “You must have done something really bad to want to help us.” At that time I was trying to atone for my sins, seeking to become “perfect”,  but now it is out of being touched by Jesus, and out of my deep love for him, who holds me in his hands. We aim for perfection, and in failing, Jesus holds us.

    We are a mixture of good and evil, and yet we are made in the “image of God,” and as we “work out our salvation,” we can can become “imitators of God,” we can become “a fragrant offering and sacrifice to God.”

   Br. Luke Ditewig, ssje says to us: “Hospitality, welcoming the stranger, is essential in the desert. We are all in the desert, bearing the challenges and difficulties of our journey. None of us can survive on our own. God welcomes us, offering sustenance and companionship. No matter what appears to be ours, what we claim to possess, all is a gift. We are God’s guests”.

    Two men are role  models on  this journey of  “working out our salvation” . One is former President Jimmy Carter. In his own personal struggle, he shines brightly as one who is “working out his salvation.” He lives simply, follows his faith. Whether he was a good president or not does not matter–what matters is he is a a man of compassion and an example of one who sees himself as a “guest in the desert.”

    The second is Father Henri Nouwen, who struggled all of his life, and found himself working with the disabled as he “worked out his salvation”, and leaves us with these words:

Personally, as my struggle reveals, I don’t often “feel” like a beloved child of God. But I know that is my most primal identity and I know that I must choose it above and beyond hesitation.      .
    Strong emotions, self-rejection, and even self-hatred justifiably toss you about, but you are free to respond as you will. You are not what others, or even you, think about yourself. You are not what you do. You are not what you have. You are a full member of the human family, having been known before you were conceived and molded in your mother’s womb. In times when you feel bad about yourself, try to choose to remain true to the truth of who you really are. Look in the mirror each day and claim your true identity. Act ahead of your feelings and trust that one day your feelings will match your convictions. Choose now and continue to choose this incredible truth. As a spiritual practice claim and reclaim your primal identity as beloved daughter or son of a personal Creator.”

    In our most primal selves we are created in the image of God, we are called “to be imitators of God,” and in struggling to do so, we find the best in us and each person we encounter. We are guests in the desert, and as God shows us hospitality, so are we to show hospitality to others. Let us walk in love! Deo Gratias! Thanks be to God.” Deus Meus et Omnia, “My God and All Things.”

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

P.O. Box 642656

San Francisco, CA 94164

http://www.temenos.org

415-305-2124

temenos@gmail.com

Labor for the Food that Endures

January 3, 2020

Labor for the Food that Endures!

John 6:27

“Do not labor for the food that perishes, but for the food that endures to eternal life, which the Son of Man will give to you. For on him God the Father has set his seal.”

    This ministry has been an exercise in faith. We have depended on gifts, our own labor from waiting tables to counseling, living from week to week.

    Through our experience we have learned to feed on “the food that endures to eternal life.” We have no guarantees of having enough funds each month. There have been times when we have lived on one meal a day.

    Jesus directs our attention to the food of the Spirit, not because he does not want to feed our bodies, but because he wants to break our cycle of worrying over our material needs–food, housing, and the next set of bills. None of these things will last forever.

    Our true purpose is to become Christ to others, sharing of ourselves, so that materially all are provided for, and we are fed  eternally through the love and grace of God. Thank you for walking this journey with us. Deus Meus et Omnia, “My God and all things.” Deo Gratias! Thanks be to God!

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

P.O. Box 642656

San Francisco, CA 94164

http://www.temenos.org

New Beginnings

January 2, 2020

Look With New Perspectives

    Yesterday we viewed, the movie Dark Waters, and read Sacrament by Olaf Olasson, dealing with the evil that pervades our large institutions–the Church (all institutional churches) and large industries, in this instance DuPont. 

    They both are the stories as old as time, of the evil that humans are capable of, as we see in the story of the Tower of Babel in the book of Genesis.

    We who follow Jesus struggle with our own need to be loved, and to be provided for, and those needs are often taken advantage of.

    And so in seeking to meet those needs we must be aware of the evil that manipulates , and pervades our lives.

    We must be aware there are no black and white solutions, but only the teaching of Jesus to “Love one another,” and it is in that teaching that Brian McLaren writes of our need to think in terms of working from the bottom up, following the tradition of Jesus, and individuals like Dorothy Day, and Peter Mauren:

Brian writes:

More and more of us are hoping, praying, and dedicating ourselves to a [new] form of Christianity. This new kind of Christianity can only emerge as a trans-denominational movement of contemplative spiritual activism. . . .

This emerging or emergence Christianity . . . will be decentralized and diverse rather than centralized and uniform. In other words, it will have the shape of a movement rather than an institution. It will be drawn together . . . by internal unity of way of life, mission, practices, and vision for the common good. . . .

Instead of hoarding and centralizing resources like expertise, education, mentoring, and authority, we need to multiply them and democratize them.

This, of course, was Jesus’ original approach. He never announced to his disciples: “Hey folks, we’re going to start a new, centralized, institutional religion and name it after me.” Instead, he played the role of a nonviolent leader and launched his movement with the classic words of movement, “Follow me” (see Matthew 4:19, for example). He used his power to empower others. He did great things to inspire his followers to do even greater things [see John 14:12-14]. Rather than demand uniformity, he reminded his disciples that he had “sheep of other folds” (John 10:16). . . . He recruited diverse disciples who learned—by heart—his core vision and way of life. Then he sent these disciples out as apostles to teach and multiply his vision and way of life among “all the nations” (Matthew 28:19).

As he repeatedly explained, the dangerous, turbulent, uncertain times, together with the failure of existing institutions, made this strategy essential: “The time is ripe,” he said (Luke 10:2, slightly paraphrased), “and we need more laborers.” (This pattern of multiplying leader/teacher/practitioners is exactly the pattern we find, not only with Jesus in the Gospels, but also with Paul throughout the New Testament, in places like 2 Timothy 2:2 and 1 Corinthians 11:1.) . . .

In dangerous times like these, . . . we have to produce generations of dedicated, courageous, and creative contemplative activists who will join God to bring radical healing and change to this damaged world, before it’s too late.

We need this movement—not someday, maybe, but right now, definitely.

 

Gateway to Presence:
If you want to go deeper with today’s meditation, take note of what word or phrase stands out to you. Come back to that word or phrase throughout the day, being present to its impact and invitation.

Deo Gratias! Thanks be to God!

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

P.O. Box 642656

San Francisco, CA 94164

http://www.temenos.org

415-305-2124

Welcoming the Face of God

January 1, 2020

Beholding the Face of God

Deuteronomy 6:22-26, Luke 2:16-21

Solemity of Mary, the Holy Mother of God

    A prayer often said  when a person dies is “Welcome them into the light of your face.” Recently a friend introduced us as his “friend and mentor.”  Our friend summarized our ministry–for in being a friend and mentor we are saying to each person we are welcoming them into the face of God. Mary was the first to gaze into the eyes of Jesus with love.

    Our ministry is from the bottom of society. We see no political parties, we see no boundaries of age, race, social status, religions, we see only the Face of God, and we are friend and mentor to each person we meet, if they will receive us.

    We are “friend and mentor”, we are not a “service provider”, and they are not our  “clients”. Each person is our friend, and we are theirs. We believe that lives only can be changed when we work from the bottom, when we become friends and mentors to others. We see the image of God in each person.

    Dorothy Day once said, “The system is dirty and rotten,” from seeing how   we fail in our friendship to others by giving the responsibility solely to an “agency”,  the system becomes “dirty and rotten”, money and power become  important and people served become objects to be moved around. 

    Only when we walk with people as friends and mentors can we truly see their needs, and in so doing provide support and care. We must let the face of God shine upon each one of us.

    When  the face of Jesus shines upon each one of us, it floods the room, there is nothing dark in God’s expression–no shady looks, no dim view of the human race. We see because we are seen, we love because we are loved. The countenance of Christ clears our eyes and welcomes us into the light. Deus Meus et Omnia, “My God and all things.” Deo Gratias! Thanks be to God!” Amen.

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

P.O. Box 642656

San Francisco, CA 94164

http://www.temenos.org

415-305-2124

Thanks be to God!

December 30, 2019

Thanks Be to God!

Luke 2:36-40 English Standard Version (ESV)

36 And there was a prophetess, Anna, the daughter of Phanuel, of the tribe of Asher. She was advanced in years, having lived with her husband seven years from when she was a virgin, 37 and then as a widow until she was eighty-four.[a] She did not depart from the temple, worshiping with fasting and prayer night and day. 38 And coming up at that very hour she began to give thanks to God and to speak of him (Jesus) to all who were waiting for the redemption of Jerusalem.

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    This morning I dressed in clerical s for a meeting and as  I walked to the Holiday Inn, giving out food, socks, it hit me, that whether I am wearing a collar or not, I am always a priest, from the moment I began at 17, until now so many years later. And people never let me forget it.

    Yesterday as I attended a candle light service for three teens, one of which I knew, and this morning met to plan one for Jim Gleason in the picture above, my thoughts went to the reality like Anna, I am near the end of my journey, and I have done by best to witness to the One brought to the Temple.  God has never let me go, but has chased me through the cotton fields of the south, the industrial areas of the north, and brought me to streets of San Francisco, the Temple into which I am called to minister. Someone was once telling me how stupid, and how inadequate I am for this ministry, and my response was: “Great, take my place, I am more than willing to leave,” and the person walked away.

    I have known Jim since he was twenty two, have seen him as a young man, full of life, struggling with drugs, and in that struggle show kindness and love to others, and in dying, leave many grieving, he lived a worthy life; the young teens whose candle light service I attended last night had just begun to live, and their lives were worthy, with a shining witness of care for   others.

    And so as we come to the cusp of this new year, I know I will not depart from this Temple, but will continue to witness in my own way to the One, who calls each one of us to love each other, to walk with one another and lift the burdens we carry, so that we can sing in the Temple together.

    Father Henri Nouwen, who struggled throughout his life, but was faithful in his ministry,  gives us that invitation to sing in the Temple, with words that ring out to the heavens:

Love is Stronger than Death

God is Spirit and the Source of all love. Our spiritual journey calls us to seek and find this living God of love in prayer, worship, spiritual reading, spiritual mentoring, compassionate service to the poor, and good friends. Let us claim the truth that we are loved and open our hearts to receive God’s overflowing love poured out for us. And living fully each day let us share that love in all our wonderful and difficult relationships, responsibilities, and passages.

The seeds of death are at work in us, but love is stronger than death. Your death and mine are our final passage, our exodus to the full realization of our identity as God’s beloved children and to full communion with the God of Love. Jesus walked the path ahead of us and invites us to choose the same path during our lifetime. He calls to us, “Follow me.” He assures us, “Do not be afraid.” This is our faith.

Deus Meus et Omnia, “My God and all things.” Amen.

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Father Christian River Damien Sims, sfw, D.Min., D.S.T.

P.O. Box 642656

San Francisco, CA 94164

http://www.temenos.org

415-305-2124

 

Our Greatest Gift

December 28, 2019

Our Greatest Gift

The Feast of the Holy Innocents

Herod Kills the Children

16 Then Herod, when he saw that he had been tricked by the wise men, became furious, and he sent and killed all the male children in Bethlehem and in all that region who were two years old or under, according to the time that he had ascertained from the wise men. 17 Then was fulfilled what was spoken by the prophet Jeremiah:

18 “A voice was heard in Ramah,
weeping and loud lamentation,
Rachel weeping for her children;
she refused to be comforted, because they are no more.” ESV

    Yesterday a woman asked for food for her two children, living in their automobile, and was telling me how she works sixty hours a week at $15.00 an hour and can not afford food and housing; In the afternoon spent time and gave food to five fourteen and fifteen year old’s living on the street; all of these are Holy Innocents. We all have blood on our hands from the our consumerist way of life.

    In 1999 Diarmuid O’Murchu called for a radical way of living non-violently. In his book Poverty, Celibacy, and Obedience, he explains a different way of relating to the different types of violence–the violence of patriarchy, consumerism, racism, homophobia, poverty, and sexual repression or aggression.

“It is a call to see ourselves through the prism of relatedness as we interact with both human and non-human life forms, living the values of dignity, respect, asceticism, humility, and cooperation. It consists of reviewing all interactions with compassion and kindness, including one’s self. Non-violent living fosters gratitude for the gift of all things coming from God.”

    So on this Feast of the Holy Innocents let us remember the young men and women who suffer from hunger on our streets, and who die so young, and in particular we would like to remember three teens, killed in a car crash Christmas Day, Mark Anthony, Michael Angelo Uriista, and Javier Ramirez, and reflect on the words of Father Henri Nouwen:

“As I grow older, I discover more and more that the greatest gift I have to offer is my own joy of living, my own inner peace, my own silence and solitude, my own sense of well-being. When I ask myself, “Who helps me the most?” I must answer, “The one who is willing to share his or her life with me.”

Deus Meus et Omnia, “My God and all things!” Amen.

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

P.O. Box 642656

San Francisco, CA 94164

http://www.temenos.org

415-305-2124

Family

December 27, 2019

FAMILY

The Feast of St.John

John 20:1-8-ESV

20 Now on the first day of the week Mary Magdalene came to the tomb early, while it was still dark, and saw that the stone had been taken away from the tomb. So she ran and went to Simon Peter and the other disciple, the one whom Jesus loved, and said to them, “They have taken the Lord out of the tomb, and we do not know where they have laid him.”

“It is remarkable how easy it is to bless others, to speak good things to and about them, to call forth their beauty and truth, when you yourself are in touch with your own blessedness. The blessed one always blesses. And people want to be blessed! This is so apparent wherever you go. No one is brought to life through curses, gossip, accusations, or blaming. There is so much taking place around us all the time. And it calls forth only darkness, destruction, and death. As the “blessed ones,” we can walk through this world and offer blessings. It doesn’t require much effort. It flows naturally from our hearts. When we hear within ourselves the voice calling us by name and blessing us, the darkness no longer distracts us. The voice that calls us the Beloved will give us words to bless others and reveal to them that they are no less blessed than we.” Father Henri Nouwen

    From Thanksgiving through New Year’s we hear a lot about family. Always the perfect family. T.V. movies of Christmas are humorous–the perfect families. Ha!     

    Snap chat and I have become old friends this season as we have talked to so many for whom their biological families have rejected  judged, or simply do not  give a damn. They talk of suicide, and the most intimate of subjects, and we become family in that sharing. These young men and women, the youth and older adults on the street with  whom we share food and socks , and simply listen to, all are “family.”

    Yesterday three friends who are 18  and I walked into the bank, and all three are of Hispanic origin, and a person asked me, “Who are they?”, and I simply said, “family,” and she said, but “you are white”, and in reply–“really, I never noticed, they are family–you ever think about getting your eyes examined.” She walked away.

    For Jesus “family” has no biological origins, he loved John most of all, and they were not biologically related.

    It has only been six months since I have come  back to full functioning, psychologically and physically, from the accident two years ago. I have worked, put on a front, and  have struggled immensely. During the past two years I have experienced the love of “family”:

“Family” of donors, who have faithfully supported us and our ministry, placing faith in us, pushing us onward;

“Family” of friends whom we stayed in contact with  through email and through Facebook; and took us out to eat and simply hung  out; A  “Family” of doctors who live in Albuquerque, who paid our health insurance, always available by telephone to listen, to support, and “family”  in other places across the country who sent cards, texts, and phone calls;

    And the “family” of Matthew, who came to volunteer at 15 and simply stayed in my life; and at 18 right after surgery, and I was alone  skipped school, and work, and made me comfortable in my pain, and sat with me, we became “family” that night as he continued to care, and check in, making sure all was well;  and there was Brandon, Cale, Aaron, one 18, the other two 16,  who on a humid summer night two and a half years ago, walked into my life at Matt’s house where I was recuperating, and they too stayed, and now they are “adults”,  and supported me in so many ways these two years. Their parents came with them, and stayed as well, and as we celebrated over Christmas brunch Sunday a week ago, laughed at all the craziness of the past two years. These guys know me better than anyone else, and yet they love me spots and all. They have never seen me as a priest, but their brother, their friend, the greatest gift one can give.

    J. Philip Newell, comments, “. . .Grace is like a cleansing rain over the landscape of life, followed by a sunlight that restores our vision.”

    The “cleansing rain of grace”, comes as we move beyond our prejudices, our biases, our false boundaries, and let people enter in our lives, spots and all. We let people become “family”, and so much around us that is negative fades away as we care for them simply as family, recognizing their warts as well as our own, and most importantly recognizing the Divine Presence within each one of us.

    I am thankful for all of you who in one way or another have been “family” to me all these years. And on this Feast of St. John, I see the face of Jesus smiling at  each  of us. We are his family. Amen! Amen! 

Deus Meus et Omnia-“My God and All Things”! Amen.

Father Christian River Damien Sims, sfw., D.Min., D.S.T.

P.O. Box 642656

San Francisco, CA 94164

http://www.temenos.org

415-305-2124

    

Being A Christian Ain’t for Sissies

December 26, 2019

Being A Christian Is Not for Sissies!

The Feast of St. Stephen

Reading 1 Acts 6:8-10; 7:54-59

Stephen, filled with grace and power,
was working great wonders and signs among the people.
Certain members of the so-called Synagogue of Freedmen,
Cyrenians, and Alexandrians,
and people from Cilicia and Asia,
came forward and debated with Stephen,
but they could not withstand the wisdom and the spirit with which he spoke.

When they heard this, they were infuriated,
and they ground their teeth at him.
But he, filled with the Holy Spirit,
looked up intently to heaven
and saw the glory of God and Jesus standing at the right hand of God,
and he said,
“Behold, I see the heavens opened and the Son of Man
standing at the right hand of God.”
But they cried out in a loud voice, covered their ears,
and rushed upon him together.
They threw him out of the city, and began to stone him.
The witnesses laid down their cloaks
at the feet of a young man named Saul.
As they were stoning Stephen, he called out
“Lord Jesus, receive my spirit.”

We have a friend who once told us, “Growing old ain’t for  sissies,” and she was right, it certainly is not, as your body breaks down, you can not sleep, your muscles ache.  But  ‘being a Christian is ain’t sissies’ either.

A young man in Syria was asked by a friend, “Why are you a Christian?” He replied: ‘Jesus is for peace, for love, for caring for your neighbor.” When he arrived home a crowd was milling about his house, and he found his parents and siblings murdered  by ISIS. ‘Being a Christian ain’t for sissies.’
    Bishop Karen Oliveto, Reverend Janie Spah, stand  in the breach for LGBTQ rights in their respective church denominations, both being persecuted, and they can tell you that ‘being a Christian ain’t for sissies.”
    Reverend Glenda Hope and Sister Bernie Gavin have stood in the breach for the homeless and the poor, and each one can tell you that ‘being a Christian ain’t for sissies”.
    Father Louie Vitalie, Larry Purcell, and Catholic Workers, have stood in the breach opposing war, and government abuse, and they can tell you that ‘being Christian ain’t for sissies.”
    People always put on Facebook a quote which basically says that religion is at the heart of our problems with humanity. They are correct–religion are  the institution, and the groups of people who have organized themselves around dogma, and legalistic laws that are destructive.     They have nothing to do with the person of Jesus who call us to love our neighbors. The Spirit of whom fanned out across the Roman Empire with acts of love, care, and that spans in the organizations to day who reach out in love without judgment to others. The early Christians set the tone for our love of people in our acts of love and all aspects of charity. They followed the Spirit of Jesus, as those who continue those works do today.
Stephen knew that “being a Christian ain’t for sissies” as he forgave those who stoned him to death. We are called to stand in the breach and love without judgment, provide health care, housing, and care without judgment; we are called to love, to  live in peace with all. “Being a Christian ain’t for sissies.” Deus Menus et Omnia, “My God and All Things.”
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Father Christian River Damien Sims,sfw, D.Min, D.S.T.
P.O. Box 642656
San Francisco, CA 94164
http://www.temenos.org
415-305-2124

Peniel, January, 2020

December 26, 2019

Xmas 2019 3

Peniel,

“Where Jacob Wrestled With God”

Newsletter of Temenos Catholic Worker

P.O. Box 642656

San Francisco, CA 94164

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

415-305-2124

www.temenos.org

Temenos@gmail.com

Deus Meus et Omnia—My God and all things.”

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Journal of An Alien Street Priest:

“And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we have seen his glory, glory as of the only Son, from the Father, full of grace and truth.” John 1:14

This verse is read from the Bible that is autographed by our many friends and sometimes enemies, who have had faith in our ministry through the years. There is a story with each signature. We have fought, hated, and loved each other, but when it comes down to it we have been faithful to one another, and we are faithful in our own way to the One who goes before us into Galilee.

    On the margins of this verse we have written, “Faith keeps us firm in our commitment to love God and our neighbor. Without faith we sink deep into quick sand.” Without faith we would have been dead a long time ago, for in season and out of season, we see Jesus before us, going before us into Galilee.

    Those who autographed this Bible are symbols of that faith in which we behold the face of Jesus. And they are examples of the faith which keeps us firm.

     As we enter the New Year and the Feast of Epiphany we are reminded that we all have our unique vocations, and Richard Meux Benson reminds us of how our vocations are always changing as we encounter the Christ:

“The wise men cannot return to their own country by the same way they used to come to Bethlehem. While they cannot go the same route because of Herod, we cannot go the same way once we have met Christ. We emerge from our encounter with Christ as changed people. We cannot follow the same path as before. Like the wise men, we must seek out Christ, but we will always leave as transformed people.”

One of the ways in which our  ministry has been transformed is the acknowledgment that we will never be large, we will never be well known, but the our call is to follow the One who tells us “to give a cup of cold water” in his name. Christmas Eve and Day we hung out in the Haight and on Polk, giving gifts, snacks, socks, and the simple presence  of listening.

In the year ahead we will continue to give “a cup of cold water,” in the name of Jesus, and we invite you to follow giving cups of cold water in any way you can. Deus Meus et Omnia-“My God and all things! Amen.

A Gift in Memory of Sarah Townsend has been given by the Reverene’s Sherman and Lorrie Skinner

Sarah had a real heart for the homeless. She had worked in a homeless shelter in Ashville, N.C., and then for four years until her death after retirement.

Memorial Service

Jim Gleason

2:00 p.m., January 11, 2020

St. Luke’s Episcopal Church

Reception to Follow.

Father River Sims’s Officiating.

Thank You:

A special thank you to William and Dina Tiedje for the gift of a van

And a special thank you to St. Luke’s Episcopal Church and her pastor, The Reverend Jason Cox for their support this past year.

We Are Beggars!

Your Gifts are Tax Deductible!

Please Give, and Help Us
To Serve Our Brothers and Sisters on the Street!

Temenos Catholic Worker

P.O. Box 642656

San Francisco, CA 94164

Pay Pal: Can be found on www.temenos.org

Volunteer Position

Editor of Peniel, our Newsletter

Six Times A Year

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The Memory of God

December 25, 2019

 

The Memory of God

“Arise, Jerusalem, and take your stand on high; look to the east, and you will see your children gathering, rejoicing in the memory of God.” Baruch 5:5

Reading this verse it is impossible not to see the children crossing the deserts, the valley’s, and the wildernesses, of Central and South America, seeking freedom in our country; this passage reminds me of the young faces I am encountering tonight and tomorrow on Polk and Haight Street, sleeping in the doors, the alleys, and in the Park, shivering, and hungry; I hear what politicians say about their treatment, and I hear what Baruch, and Jesus tells us: “Bring the little children to me,” where no judgment is pronounced, for all of us are homeless, in one way or the other, and all of us stand on the edge of homelessness–an earthquake, a fire, an illness–all of us stand on the edge.

    William Stringfellow says: Holiness is the restoration of integrity and wholeness to a person.” Each of us can tonight, tomorrow, and throughout the rest of our days “restore integrity and wholeness,” simply by seeing each person we meet, both friend, and foe, as human beings struggling to live, to have wholeness, and to bring integrity and wholeness into their lives by a kind word, simply taking time to listen, giving them food, water, clothing, and fighting for healthcare and housing for all, without prejudice, but with the openness of the One whose birthday we celebrate tonight.

““Into this world, this demented inn
in which there is absolutely no room for him at all,
Christ comes uninvited.
But because he cannot be at home in it,
because he is out of place in it,
and yet he must be in it,
His place is with the others for whom
there is no room.
His place is with those who do not belong,
who are rejected by power, because
they are regarded as weak,
those who are discredited,
who are denied status of persons,
who are tortured, bombed and exterminated.
With those for whom there is no room,
Christ is present in this world.”
– Thomas Merton

Deus Meus et Omnia

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

P.O. Box 642656

San Francisco, CA 94164

http://www.temenos.org

415-305-2124