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the tree of life

Rooted in the Tree of Life

November is the month when we traditionally remember our loved ones who have gone before us. The Tree of Life is an encouraging symbol. Just as in Spring, new leaves turn into new life, such is our Christian hope regarding the promise of everlasting life.

Each morning when we awaken with light still hiding in the sleeve of winter,
may we receive what is needed to meet the challenges of the day.

Like terminal buds drawing strength from the roots of a wintered tree,
we greet the darkest days of the year with hope,
trusting that the potency of the love of the Holy One will  reinforce this essence of our being.

When evening arrives and our list of “to do” is not fully accomplished,
let us enter the darkness and discover gratitude for the positive things that we have experienced.

Each day let us remember that winter darkness invites us to breathe in stillness,
to rest in the arms of silence,
where what is of greatest value can be deepened and enhanced in us.

No matter how expansive the world’s suffering,
we can unite with that pain through our empathy,
the gift of compassion that our experience of darkness empowers in us.

We are the terminal buds on the tree of life,
waiting, trusting, remaining hopeful—may these valued movements of the heart increase in us.

As the radiant warmth of springtime unfurls the hidden green in buds whose arms wrapped tightly around themselves,
so will surprises of future light awaken and unfurl what has seemed forever buried in our winter’s repose.

(An extract from ‘Strengthening Darkness’ – Joyce Rupp, OFM).

In Love we remember

“For since we believe that Jesus died
and rose again, even so, through Jesus,
God will bring with him those who
have fallen asleep”
(1 Thes 4:14)

We bring before you in prayer …

All those dear to me who have died.

(Name those for whom you wish to pray).

Remember them God in your loving kindness.
May they now rest in your eternal peace.
May we who still miss them and grieve for them find comfort in our belief
that we will one day see them again, in the kingdom of heaven.

We remember in prayer all those who have died, and who have no one to pray for them.

For these and for our loved ones we pray:
Eternal rest grant unto them, O Lord, let perpetual light shine upon them.
May they rest in peace.

Amen.

May the Lord support us all the day long,
till the shades lengthen and the evening comes,
and the busy world is hushed
and the fever of life is over and our work is done.

Then in His love and mercy
may He give us a safe lodging,
a holy rest and peace at last.

Amen.

(St. John Henry Newman)

 

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