Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Agents of Love

It is because the Beloved is who the Beloved is that one at once becomes more enthralled in the pursuits of the Beloved as it is, in degree, directed towards the One Who Is Infinitely Lovable.

Such a pursuit attaches a portion of the Infinite to the Finite and beauty to what is not yet perfected. Love becomes a journey in the perfection process, not simply for gain of one's self but so also the whole world and all contained therein. It is there that we fill in what was in Christ's afflictions were 'lacking.' (cf. Col. 1:24) His Sacrifice lacks nothing except our participation, as St. Paul says, in the works that the Lord has "prepared for us to enter into." (cf. Eph. 2:10)

One's acceptance of imperfection is one of it being in the past, yet there is a perfection that we are called to in the same Spirit of the One Who Is. We mustn't be discouraged when faced with imperfection or imperfect love but, rather, be patient with the Other as He is patient with us. As the King is to his servant, so must we as his servants be patient to our fellow servants lest we be required to "pay to the last penny." (cf. Mt. 5:26)

This is the secret of love and mercy. We are called to be agents of change in this ineffable love. We are called to be agents of Love; we are called Disciples of Love.

May He be praised.

Monday, April 22, 2013

John Paul II's "Magnificat"


My soul, magnify the glory of the Lord,
Father of great Poetry — and so good.

With wondrous rhythm he fortified my youth,
on an oak anvil he hammered out my song.

Resound, my soul, with the glory of the Lord
who made knowledge of angels, most kindly Maker.

Now at your heavenly banquet, I drain
a chalice with wine overflowing — your servant in prayer:
in gratitude for the angelic glow You lit for my youth
whittling its rough shape from the wood of a linden tree.

You omnipotent, the wondrous woodcarver of saints,
there are many oaks on my road, many birches.
I am a village field, a sunclad flower bed,
A young face jutting from the Tatra rocks.

I bless your sowing with sunrise and sunset;
Sower, I am your soil — widely scatter your grain —
may a field of rye and a castle of spruce
grow from my youth cradled in yearning and pain.

Let happiness magnify You — a great mystery:
with primordial song you have stretched my lungs,
made my face sink into the blue of the sky,
a shower of music falling on my strings —

and in this melody You came as Christ, a vision.
Look ahead, young Slave, look, the solstice fires!
The sacred oak is still in leaf, your king has not withered,
but become for the people a lord and a priest.

Magnify the Lord, oh my soul, for your calm foreboding,
for Gothic yearning in spring’s incarnation,
for youth aflame — wine chalice of elation,
for autumn born in the likeness of heather and stubble.

Magnify Him for poetry, for you and for pain:
the joy in mastering earth, gold, blue skies,
the passion of generations in words incarnate;
You will harvest this ripeness when it falls and dies.

The pain is evening sorrow of things half-uttered,
when beauty overwhelms us, and ecstasy is ours,
God bending to the harp — but on a rocky track
a sunbeam breaks, and words lose their power.

Words fail, and I am like a fallen angel,
a statue on marble pedestal — stone on stone —
but You breathed yearning into the marble arms,
the statue longs to take off — angel again.

And I magnify You also for the haven there is in You,
the reward for each song — day of holy quest,
for the joy that sings the hymn of motherhood,
the quiet word of fulfillment — Eli manifest!

Father, be blessed for the angel’s sorrow
for the song that crushes falsehood, for the soul’s inspired fight.
Break all love of words in us, and destroy
The puffed-up form parading like a fool.

A Slav troubadour, I walk Your roads and play
to maidens at the solstice, to shepherds with their flock,
but, wide as this vale, my song of prayer
I throw for You only, before your throne of oak.

Blessed are you, oh song among songs,
blessed the soul’s sowing and the seeds of light.
Let my soul magnify Him who threw over my shoulders
princely satin, velvet’s soft delight.

Blessed be the Carver-of-saints and prophet and Slav.
have mercy on me, a publican inspired.
Magnify the Lord, oh my soul, in humble love
singing the hymn: Holy, Holy, Holy!

Now the song is one. Poetry, descend!
The seed like the soul yearns, insatiable.
May my road keep to the shade of oaks and birches,
and may my youthful harvest be pleasing to God.

Slav Book of yearning, on the last day resound
like brass, choirs of the resurrection
in virginal holy song, in poetry that bows
with the hymn of humanity — God’s Magnificat.

Karol Wojtyla - Cracow, spring-summer, 1939
Published in Karol Wojtyla's Collected Poems, 1982. Translated by Jerzy Peterkiewicz.