She loved much….

(A re-post of a favorite, from May, 2011)

Alexander Andreyevich Ivanov

Alexander Andreyevich Ivanov 

Mary Magdalene, what are you about,
as I follow your footsteps through the gospels?
You begin and you end with JESUS.

I see you at Simon’s house
with your perfumed oil,
and I find you again at the tomb,
carrying fragrant spices.

What are you about Mary?
You are unique in the gospels,
 always at the feet of Jesus.

At your home, where Martha busied herself.
at the Cross with Our Lady.
I never find you when you are not in adoration of Him.

Such faithful love did not go unnoticed.
You were the first to see Him after He rose.

“Mary,” He said,
And you were at His feet again.

Mary Magdalene, what are you about?
Tell me please,
that I too may follow in your way

And anoint today
the Adorable Face of JESUS,
with grateful love.

And sit at His feet,
washing them with
tears of repentance

And stand by the Cross,
consoling Him as I bear
my own little crosses.

And someday, behold Him
resurrected as you did,
and fall at His feet in worship.

Where are you going O Mary?
Take me along please!
For no greater words could I hear
Than those JESUS spoke of you:

“She loved much.”

Advertisements

Living on Love….

One of my favorite books is the collection of Therese’s poetry, which has only been available in English for about 15 years.

I have even considered studying French, so that I could read her original words, but I have not yet followed up on that idea!  However, the Institute of Carmelite Studies, (ICS) translation seems excellent, and I have found much to ponder within its pages.

My favorite poem written by Therese is the 15 stanza, Living on Love.  It was also the favorite of her beloved sister Celine (Sister Genevieve of Saint Teresa.)  Therese composed it during Forty Hours Devotion before the Most Blessed Sacrament in 1895.  She later wrote it down from memory.

To choose one stanza to share is so difficult.  Each one breathes Therese:  love, simplicity, confidence…

In stanza 12, she wishes to imitate Mary Magdalene, and this stanza also references her deep love for the Holy Face of Jesus.  In fact, although she is widely known as St. Therese of the Child Jesus, her true name in religious life was Sister Therese of the Child Jesus and the Holy Face, and Carmelites generally still accord her the honor of both of her titles — or “kingdoms” as she called them.  But that is a story for another day…..

(from a painting by her sister, Celine Martin)

LIVING ON LOVE

By

 St. Therese of the Child Jesus and the Holy Face

Stanza 12

Living on Love is imitating Mary,
Bathing your divine feet that she kisses, transported.
With tears, with precious perfume,
She dries them with her long hair…
Then standing up, she shatters the vase,
And in turn she anoints your Sweet Face.
As for me, the perfume with which I anoint your Face
Is my Love!….

Translated by Donald Kinney, OCD

(Therese used rhyming, in the original French)

Rabbuni! John:20:16….

Mary Magdalene, what are you about,
as I follow your footsteps through the gospels?
You begin and you end with JESUS.

I see you at Simon’s house
with your perfumed oil,
and I find you again at the tomb,
carrying fragrant spices.

What are you about Mary?
You are unique in the gospels,
as the one always at the feet of Jesus.

At your home, where Martha busied herself.
at the Cross with Our Lady.                                                                               
I never find you when you are not in adoration of Him.

Such faithful love did not go unnoticed.                                                                                    You were the first to see Him after He rose.
“Mary,” He said,
And you were at His feet again.

Mary Magdalene, what are you about?
Tell me please,
that I too may follow in your way

And anoint today
the Adorable Face of JESUS,
with grateful love.

And sit at His feet,
washing them with
tears of repentance

And stand by the Cross,
consoling Him as I bear
my own little crosses.

And someday, behold Him
resurrected as you did,
and fall at His feet in worship.

Where are you going O Mary?
Take me along please!
For no greater words could I hear
Than those JESUS spoke of you:

“She loved much.”