Last year the church gifted us with the long awaited new translation of the Roman Missal. At
monastery we have often reflected together and commented on the riches of the
prayers that are now directly available to us.
This Sunday’s opening prayer for Holy Mass is no exception. “Grant us, we pray, O Lord our God, the
constant gladness of being devoted to you, for it is full and lasting happiness
to serve with constancy the author of all that is good.” Here we ask God to give us constant
gladness and are reminded of the true source of all joy. We spend much of our time seeking happiness
in the wrong places-physical or emotional comforts, the esteem or admiration of
others, power and self assertion. Even
Poor Clares, although our resources for such vain pursuits are by our own free
choice more limited, can also fall into the trap of seeking superficial rather
than lasting joy. It takes a deep faith
to see that full and lasting happiness is found only in God, the author of all
that is good. In Him is ALL the good we
are seeking in those other seemingly more attainable “goods”. Someone has said, “God is enough, God is
enough, and everything else is not enough”.
It is only in loving and serving Him, not sporadically but with
constancy, that we will find that fulfillment which will at last quiet the
longing of our hearts. The paradox here
is that in the Kingdom, to serve is to reign, to die is to live and losing is
so much gain.