Br Thomas White, LC
The fourth chapter of John’s Gospel contains one of my favorite passages. Jesus passes through Samaria and stops at a well at noon. He comes upon a woman, drawing water from the well, too ashamed of her lifestyle to get water in the morning or the evening with the other women. Jesus asks for a drink. She, surprised that a Jew should ask a Samaritan for water (the two groups hated each other), answers a little brusquely. Jesus says, “If you knew the gift of God and who it is who is asking you for water, you would ask him and he would give you living water.” The woman, confused, responds, “Sir, you don’t even have a bucket!”
How often in our own lives we feel the same way! Jesus makes a lot of promises, but can he really keep them all?
Br Eric Gilhooly, LC
Can I be faithful? At times we all tend to wonder. When we experience our failures and weaknesses or when others aren’t what we had hoped they would be, I think many of us in the Legion and consecrated life go back to the more fundamental questions, to the question at the root of the vocation.
Will I be able to stay faithful to my consecration and to my priesthood no matter what? Others have fallen. I have fallen. Who am I to stay standing? Who am I to get back on my feet?
Br Andres Colmenares, LC
We have all gone through one stage of our life or another when living our Christian faith was more difficult than normal. Something happens that makes us put into question the very beliefs that were inscribed in our hearts. But Christ’s constant yearning is for us to “Believe and doubt no longer” (John 21:27).
Caravaggio was a painter who lived towards the end of the 16th century. There is something in his paintings depicting religious subjects that easily catches the attention of the viewer. Caravaggio’s “The Incredulity of Saint Thomas” tells the story of himself, but above all, of each of us in our journey through life.
Br Robert Wills, LC
Our modern time resembles ancient Greco-Roman civilizations in many respects — especially in our thirst for knowledge. More than ever, people are so flooded with information that they are often tempted to give up the search, echoing the words of Pontius Pilate, “What is truth?” (John 18:38)
Relativism was just as rampant yesterday as today. Knowledge wasn’t properly valued for how much truth it contained. For the Greeks and Romans, it was at this time of uncertainty when the image of the shepherd came on the scene, even before Christianity. It symbolized the hope for a peaceful and a simple life in the rural countryside. In the same way, Christ the Good Shepherd wants to lead each of us to green pastures and refreshing waters (Psalm 23:2) in order to nourish our minds with the simple truths of our faith, teaching us what we truly need to know in order to “have life and have it to the full” (John 10:10).
Br John van Dorpe, LC
I knew my corner of the city like the back of my hand, and I could find my way around without any help. From my parents’ house to my daily workplace, you follow the wooden fence twelve paces, and then cross the open square until you hit the rough stone wall. That is the back wall of the tanner’s, and then you follow that wall around the corner and down the alley until you can smell sheep. There is the corral and the fruit sellers’ stalls.
Cross the square, following the tables of the fruit sellers and soon you will begin to hear donkeys. That’s when you know that you have to make a sharp right turn and you will then reach the smooth stone wall. Follow that to the left for four paces, round the corner, and you are at the best spot in the whole city to collect “contributions,” as I call them. People call it the Beautiful Gate, and on a good day, I understand why: it really is beautiful to hear all those shekels clinking into my sack.
Br John Choi, LC
If I could put the Legion’s spirituality in a few words, this is how I would do it.
Br Stuart Mast, LC
Many times when I was younger, I dreamt of being a superhero and having all those convenient superpowers like laser vision and being able to fly, while, on the side, saving the world from an evil monster. I think this is something that every boy has experienced and it wouldn’t be bad to get excited about it again.
Br Robert Antonio, LC
Just last month Forbes magazine published the new ranking of the seventy most powerful people of our day. Now almost no one in this world is probably worried right now about getting the #1 spot. At most it’s one of those ideas that pop into the imagination of an innocent 2nd grader.
It did however pop into the mind of two grown-up blood brothers as they journeyed across Palestine with the person they had good reason to believe was the most powerful man on earth. These were the “sons of thunder”, more commonly known to us as James and John. No wonder they asked the Master whether they could occupy the first and second place in the Kingdom that was to come. The Divine Master only responded that the decision wasn’t his to make, but he did promise that they would drink his chalice.