A Divine Darkness, by Claire Dwyer

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By Claire Dwyer, Spiritual Direction

This Present Paradise

A Series of Reflections on St. Elizabeth of the Trinity

(Start with part 1 here.)

The visiting American priest bowed his head in prayer before the Blessed Sacrament at the Mother House of the Missionaries of Charity in Calcutta.  Suddenly, there was a gentle rustling at his side, and a sister pressed a note into his hand.  He unfolded it to see Mother Teresa’s handwriting:


please pray for me – 

Where is Jesus?

Glancing at the tiny nun across the room, he met her intense gaze for the briefest of moments before she turned again to the Blessed Sacrament on the altar.  

It was a small glimpse into a vast torrent of pain which the world would never know until St. Teresa’s letters were made public after her death — a momentary window looking into an astonishing darkness which seemed, on the surface, to be nothing but light.

Her writings would expose decades of darkness, startling all of us who assumed—wrongly—that under her luminous simplicity and peaceful, beloved face lived a soul steeped in consolations.  What else could move a woman to spend her life serving the poorest of the poor in the most wretched conditions?  And yet, now we know that she lived in a near-continuous state of total emptiness and bewildering abandonment.  Heaving her heart, again and again, before the Lord in an excruciating state of surrender, trust, and faith, desiring deeply contact with the One who had for so long fallen silent within her.   …

Read more here:    https://spiritualdirection.com/2020/05/28/a-divine-darkness