Greetings to friend of Silence around the world -- and, welcome to all those who have recently indicated their interest in and commitment to allowing enough silence in their lives for the Word to be heard!

Would that each one of you could have attended the recent wedding of Martha and Roger -- an event which seemed like a foretaste of heaven where we shall indeed be one in the Spirit. The joy of the occasion was deepened and enhanced by the rich variety of cultures and religious traditions represented and experienced in the ceremony and the periods of Silence interspersed throughout the celebration. Besides the usual solemn vows, the couple pledged to one another to live with less and in solidarity with the poor and oppressed, to work for peace and justice and to help one another grow in love. A poignant moment was the acknowledgement of the unseen, yet deeply felt, presence of Michelle -- a beloved and active member of the Church of the Messiah community, whose untimely and violent death had been celebrated there just two weeks previously.

The commitment and love expressed by this community, this couple, seems to exemplify the following words of William Johnston in his book, SILENT MUSIC:

"If two or more people love one another deeply, they may come to that profound level of awareness and mind-expansion in which no words are necessary because their intimacy is not built on words. And the stronger the love, the more profound will be the silence and the deeper will be the enlightenment. Furthermore, if this love goes to the core of their being, it brings a realization of something more than the people involved -- it brings a consciousness of the all; it contains an element of universality."

~ from SILENT MUSIC by William Johnston
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"The property of love is never to seek self, to keep back nothing, but to give everything to the one it loves. Blessed the soul that loves; the Lord has become its captive through love!"

~ St. John of the Cross
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A Morning Prayer: O Beloved of my heart, give me grace today to recognize the stirrings of your Spirit within my soul and to listen most attentively to all that You have to say to me. Let not the noises of the world so confuse me, that I cannot hear your Voice. Help me not to deceive myself as to the meaning of your Word; and so let me in all things surrender myself into your hands, through the grace of Christ's Love. Amen.

~ from A DIARY OF PRIVATE PRAYER by John Baillie
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The mystery IS Christ among you -- Christ in me, Christ in you, Christ between us. The root word of mystery in Greek is SILENCE, which is also related to secret. One way we come to know ourselves is by naming our reality, our experience: I am mystery ... I am sacrament ... I am silence ... I am secret ... I am treasure ... I am temple of the Holy Spirit...

"If you but knew the gift of God and who it is that speaks to you, in you ..." John 4:10 We are invited in the silence to discover the hidden mystery of Christ ... we are invited in the silence to delve so deeply into our inner beings that we become new beings!

~ from CAN YOU DRINK THIS CUP? by Fr. Edward J. Farrell
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Silence is a green, secluded garden,
Where you may walk at leisure, and
speak with the Beloved ...
Leaving the outer world of noise and hurry
To walk serenely on prayer's holy sod.

Silence is a garden sweet with fragrance,
Its grasses nurtured by faith's gentle rain,
Its every bloom a link with God,
our Creator.

Once you have wandered there,
you will return again,
And in the garden's beauty,
be made whole ...
In the Silence,
the quiet garden of the Soul.

~ author unknown, contributed by Fredi Brown, Bradenton, FL
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"Inspiration is the feeling of beginning at the threshold where Silence and Light meet. Silence and Light. Silence is not very, very quiet. It is something that you may say is lightless, darkless. These are all invented words. Desire to be, to express. Some can say this is the ambient soul -- if you go back beyond and think of something in which Light and Silence were together, and may be still together, and separate only for the convenience of argument ...

"The way one does things is private, but what one does can belong to everybody. Your greatest worth is in the area where you can claim no ownership, and the part that you do that doesn't belong to you is the most precious. It is the kind of thing you can offer because it is a better part of you; it is a part of general commonality that belongs to everybody."

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