Glory to God

last-supperFrom Elizabeth Johnson’s Quest for the Living God: “…Oscar Romero, bishop and martyr, riffed on a famous proverb crafted in the second century by the bishop Irenaeus. In Latin this pithy, mellifluous maxim reads: Gloria Dei, vivens homo, which translated means, “the glory of God is the human being fully alive.” The glory of God is homo, the human being, the whole human race, every individual person, vivens, fully alive. God’s glory is at stake in the flourishing of people, every single one and all together. How could it be otherwise if the incomprehensible Mystery toward whom the human spirit dynamically tends self-communicates to the world in Jesus and the Spirit as absolute, challenging, sheltering love. In thus choosing to create, save, and dwell within the world, holy mystery has made the world and its inhabitants precious beyond all telling. Harming human beings, inflicting violence or neglecting their good, translates logically into an insult to the Holy One. The two are so tied together, by God’s intent, that the glory of the One is at stake in the well-being of all others.”




From Norman Wirzba’s Food and Faith: A Theology of Eating: “According to a rabbinic tradition …it was precisely the months inside the ark that mattered most because it was there, in the work of feeding and caring for the animals, that Noah revealed what it means to be a righteous one. On this view, the ark was not primarily an escape vessel but a school for the learning of compassion. Here Noah refined the sympathies and dedication that are crucial for the development of a caring, hospitable relationship with the world. By giving up self-interest, Noah learned how to transform himself and his work into a gift for the good of others. …The triumph of Noah’s life is that, like God, he recognized the needs of others and then attended to them. What Noah learned is that the whole world is God’s ark because it is the place where God shows himself to be a hospitable host.”


The Sun


From Thomas Merton’s Conjectures of a Guilty Bystander: “I have the immense joy of being human, a member of a race in which God … became incarnate. As if the sorrows and stupidities of the human condition could overwhelm me, now I realize what we all are. And if only everybody could realize this! But it cannot be explained. There is no way of telling people that they are all walking around shining like the sun…. Then it was as if I suddenly saw the secret beauty of their hearts, the depths of their hearts, where neither sin nor desire nor self-knowledge can reach, the core of their reality, the person that each one is in God’s eyes. If only they could all see themselves as they really are. If only we could see each other that way all the time.”