January 6-12, 2019
Kathy McNany, OSB, Emmanuel Monastery, Baltimore
After the wise ones were gone, an angel came to Joseph in a dream.
“Get up! Flee to Egypt with the child and his mother.
Stay there until I tell you to return,
because Herod is going to search for the child to kill him.
—Matthew 2: 13
Reflection: The Rest of the Story?
The story continues... A Middle Eastern couple are forced by the occupying forces to register in a far off town. The wife is about to give birth to her first child. The couple could find no place to shelter them or take them in. Sheltered finally in a cave surrounded by sheep, cows, and other work animals, they find brief solace before having to flee again, this time for their lives. Pursued by the military/terrorists of their day, they seek refuge in a foreign country. What will they meet? Armed guards? A wall? Will they be refused entry at the border? No papers, rather they come seeking to save their lives, seeking asylum. What if they had been refused entry? Painting of an Egyptian Street Family
Blessed are those who are on the move,
transforming exodus and flight in energy for a new search.
From victims will come the protagonists of history.
Blessed are those who, forced to wander without direction,
with wisdom learn and teach the lessons of the road.
They will be the architects of a new time.
Blessed the wayfarers of all roads
in the tears, sweat and the work of their hands.
They prepare a tomorrow of justice and right.
Blessed are those who open the door to pilgrims,
making solidarity the passport to our common homeland.
They are constructing a new citizenship.
(Excerpts from “Blessed Are” by Fr. J. A. Goncalves in Prayer Without Borders)
For your pondering:
Ponder and pray about this question. ..What if they had been refused entry at the border of Egypt?
What is happening today is what happened 2,000 years ago.
Who is the “holy” family?
How does this scripture impact our own responses to the immigration issues we face; to the deportation of people who flee her for their lives; to the separation of children from their families?
Who is the Holy Family today?
Who is the Child being pursued?
Use this opportunity to live into the questions more fully, that we might someday perhaps live into compassionate answers.
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Sister Kathy McNany is a Benedictine Sister of Baltimore and has been growing her monastic heart for 55 years. She is a spiritual director and retreat leader and has served in varied leadership roles in her community and in the Federation of St. Scholastica. Sister Kathy's reflections will offer insight on Scripture and invite you to make the words of the scripture writers your own as you ponder the thoughts and questions that she will offer you each week.