Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Come to Know a Hazelnut

Mystic, Julian of Norwich

KJ Psalm 128:2

For thou shalt eat the labour of thine hands: happy shalt thou be, and it shall be well with thee.
KJ Isaiah 3:10

Say you to the righteous, that it shall be well with him: for they shall eat the fruit of their deeds.

On our journey to the cross All shall be well When We Meet Jesus and He is Revealed in the Mystery and Simplicity of the Hazelnut
Last week at Bible Study we talked the coming Communion and this led to a talk about the Last Supper (which St. Gabriel’s Episcopal will celebrate in reenactment on Thursday before Good Friday). And we talked about feasts for Saints.

Part of my daily devotion http://www.d365.org/journeytothecross/  where they posed in there theme “What would it be like to see Jesus - really see Jesus “ the question “With whom are you sharing? Who is hoping that you will notice them today and “be Jesus” to them?”
This led me to another reading I had pick to think about this week Who Goes With You? http://reflections-dwtx.org/topic-i-call-you-friends/communion-of-saints/who-goes-with-you/.

The author in developing this theme wrote “The question of Who Goes With You invoked something much more personal and invited me into a reflection of the deeper mystery of the communion of saints. If all of us stopped for a moment and prayerfully recalled those who have shaped our spiritual journeys, we might be surprised at the familiar faces that would appear.”

As I read the writer spoke of Saints who I knew and there I found also the mention of an unfamiliar name Julian Norwich.
I had first run across her name when I visited West Minister Abbey and Cathedral and viewed in passing Julian’s Manuscript on the Hazelnut in the Palm. Her first revelation “The Crown of Thorns and God's love for all that is made — the hazelnut” "The Spirit showed me a tiny thing, the size of a hazelnut," wrote Julian of Norwich. In Julian's vision, the fragile and insignificant hazelnut contains all of Creation--and yet it endures "because God loves it."

So I decided to investigate her further and learn more. And indeed there is a feast for her.

So I sought Wikipedia and this led me to other sources

 Julian of Norwich (ca. 8 November 1342 – ca. 1416) is regarded as one of the most important English mystics. She is venerated in the Anglican and Lutheran churches, but has never been canonized, or officially beatified, by the Catholic Church, probably because so little is known of her life aside from her writings, including the exact date of her death.

At the age of 31, suffering from a severe illness and believing she was on her deathbed, Julian had a series of intense visions of Jesus Christ. Julian wrote down a narration of the visions immediately following them, known as The Short Text which she later expounded in her major work Sixteen Revelations of Divine Love (ca. 1393).

The saying, "…All shall be well, and all shall be well, and all manner of thing shall be well", which Julian claimed to be said to her by God Himself, reflects her theology. It is one of the most famous lines in Catholic theological writing, and one of the best-known phrases of the literature of her era.

The composer Lydia McCauley used this as the theme of her Sabbath Day's Journey.
The 20th-century poet T.S. Eliot incorporated this phrase, as well as Julian's "the ground of our beseeching" from the 14th Revelation, in his "Little Gidding”: 

Whatever we inherit from the fortunate
We have taken from the defeated
What they had to leave us—a symbol:
A symbol perfected in death.
And all shall be well and
All manner of thing shall be well
By the purification of the motive
In the ground of our beseeching.
Julian is honored with a feast day on May 13 in the Roman Catholic tradition ]and on May 8 in the Anglican and Lutheran traditions

May All Be Well this Day In Christ Jesus


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