Visit the Abbey of the Arts online retreat platform to access your programs:

Christmas Blessings from Ireland! ~ A love note from your online abbess

The Risk of Birth

This is no time for a child to be born,
With the earth betrayed by war & hate
And a comet slashing the sky to warn
That time runs out & the sun burns late.

That was no time for a child to be born,
In a land in the crushing grip of Rome;
Honour & truth were trampled by scorn-
Yet here did the Saviour make his home.

When is the time for love to be born?
The inn is full on the planet earth,
And by a comet the sky is torn-
Yet Love still takes the risk of birth.

—Madeleine L’Engle

Dearest monks and artists,

All of us at Abbey of the Arts want to wish you the most joyful of Christmas blessings. As the 17th century German mystic Angelus Silesius wrote: ““I must be the Virgin and give birth to God.”

The heart of the Christian tradition is the incarnation, the belief that God dwells in tender flesh and continues to be birthed again and again.

With this feast we celebrate the risk of birth arising from the impulse of love. In the midst of so much sorrow and suffering in the world, to bring forth our own deepest dreams takes courage. To believe that when we follow the leadings of the Spirit that we can contribute to a world of deeper peace and reconciliation requires hope. To bring forth the vision, the seed of new possibility, demands great love.

May you find yourself inspired by courage, infused with hope, and embraced by love.

(*Please note: We will be taking a break from the daily emails this week and will be back on New Year’s Day.)

With great and growing love,

Christine

Christine Valters Paintner, PhD, REACE

Photo © Christine Valters Paintner

You might also enjoy

Monk in the World: Michael Moore

I am delighted to share another beautiful selection to the Monk in the World guest post series from the community. Read on for Michael Moore’s reflection “Finding Hope on the Threshold.” When I was asked to contribute a Monk in the World guest post, I

Read More »

Some Updates from Your Online Abbess

Dearest monks, artists, and pilgrims, This past Monday our Wisdom Council gathered together online for our semi-annual time of reflection, inspiration, and planning. We are extraordinarily blessed with a group of 14 members who are heart-centered, contemplative leaders committed to helping Abbey of the Arts continue to

Read More »

Monk in the World Guest Post: Melinda Emily Thomas

I am delighted so share another beautiful submission to the Monk in the World guest post from the community. Read on for Abbey Assistant Melinda Thomas‘ reflection on statio is adapted from her book Sacred Balance: Aligning Body and Spirit Through Yoga and the Benedictine

Read More »