Thought For The Week
"Every child, every person needs to know that they are a source of joy; every child, every person, needs to be celebrated. Only when all of our weaknesses are accepted as part of our humanity can our negative, broken self-images be transformed."
The recent death of Jean Vanier was announced on May 7th. For many people he was often referred to as a living saint. He was the founder of the L'Arche Community which accompanies people with developmental and intellectual disabilities. He worked to build a community where people with and without a disability could live and work alongside each other as equals. Jean Vanier started the first L'Arche Community in a rundown cottage in Paris 55 years ago. Today there are 154 communities across 38 countries.
Jean Vanier was also a deeply spiritual man. His faith was a source of strength and energy for him. He also recognised the struggles one can go through with faith matters. There comes a point in everyone's life when we struggle to get around the idea of God or what it means in our life. Any person who claims to understand God or knows everything about God, are best listened to with great caution. No one, not even Pope Francis, is close to understanding God fully. When we talk about God we are talking about the infinite and so we will always be limited in understanding God completely.
When talking about God, it is like reflecting a significant and special beam of light. It lights up our darkness, fills our soul with hope, it energises us and keeps us going. But we can only touch and feel some of these beams. There are hundreds, thousands, probably millions of them. They are all over the world and we experience a few or some of them. What a privilege to be able to experience God's presence in our daily stories constantly unfolding. Jean Vanier was one person who was a beam of light for so many people. May he rest in peace.
Thought For The Week is updated each Monday