Contemplatives and Therefore Apostles

Contemplatives and Therefore Apostles

Wed, 29 Dec 21 Foundress

Mother Maria Oliva Bonaldo exhorts her daughters we are “contemplative and therefore apostles. “We wish to accomplish the same work of Jesus which the father has assigned to us as His members of His mystical body; building up of the body of Christ. Therefore, we commit ourselves to evangelization, which is the mission, the vocation and the profound identity of the Church. Our apostolic life is inspired by Mother Mary in the mystery of Visitation. Like her we wish to “go in haste, carrying Christ and magnifying God with every generation. Christ came down as the Word of God the incarnate. He continues to proclaim His Word to us especially in the liturgy of the word. He is present to us sacramentally, giving of himself in the Eucharist. We who listen to his word and receive Him in the Eucharist are sent forth to be the body of Christ for others. To contemplate is not primarily a way of doing but a way of being. Being contemplatives’ means it does not depend on the eyes but in the heart. Here prayer enters into play as an act of faith and love, as the “breath of our relationship with God”. Prayer purifies the heart and, with it, also sharpens our gaze. Contemplation is “I look at Him and He looks at me.” It is like this; loving contemplation, typical of the most intimate prayer it doesn’t   need many words, but a gaze is enough. It is enough to be convinced that our life is surrounded by an immense and faithful love of God that can never separate us from Jesus. Jesus is the master of this gaze ……In his life He never lacked time, space, silence and the loving communion with God  that allows one’s existence not to be devastated by the in evitable trails, but to maintain beauty intact. This is the secret of His relationship with Heavenly Father. Contemplation in action is the lens through which we respond to the challenges and opportunities we see in the world around us. This particular value inspires us to tackle problems big and small each day with a sense of creativity and thoughtfulness in order to bring ourselves closer to our own true potential and to be closer to God. Pope Francis in a general audience ( 5th May, 2021) says, Contemplative dimension of the human being – which is not yet contemplative prayer is a bit like the salt of life; it gives flavor; it seasons our day. We can contemplate by gazing at the sun that rises in the morning or at the trees deck themselves out in spring green. Therefore it is necessary that we draw strength from the Eucharist, word of God, liturgical prayers and meditation in order to get recharged fully to go out to the peripheries taking the church along with us to the poor, needy and where Christ is not known. A contemplative in action spends time in self-reflection and discernment to look within and make sense of one’s experience.