Notebook

Sursum corda

I recently had occasion to cite an insight of which I am convinced: ‘Anthropocentrism kills the Church and its life.’ How to get out of the rut? We’re told in this morning’s vigils reading, one of my favourite texts in the liturgical cycle. The Irish abbot Columbanus (ca. 543-615) asks how God’s light may shine in him and so illumine others? His answer is formulated as a prayer: ‘I beg you, my Jesus, fill my lamp with your light. By its light let me see the holiest of holy places, your own temple where you enter as the eternal High Priest of the eternal mysteries. Let me see you, watch you, desire you. Let me love you as I see you, and before you let my lamp always shine, always burn. Let us know you, let us love you, let us desire you alone, let us spend our days and nights meditating on you alone, let us always be thinking of you. Fill us with love of you, let us love you with all the love that is your right as our God. Let that love fill us and possess us, let it overwhelm our senses until we can love nothing but you, for you are eternal.’