Thursday, March 20, 2008

Not even for a day...


Dear Parish Faithful,


Great Lent: The Eleventh Day

From St. John Cassian (+c. 430)

If we take St. Paul literally,
we are not allowed to cling to our anger
even for a day.
I would like to make a comment, however,
that many people are so embittered and furious
when they are in a state of anger
that they not only cling to their anger for a day
but drag it out for weeks.

I am at a loss for words to explain
those who do not even vent their anger in speech
but erect a barrier of sullen silence around them
and distill the bitter poison of their hearts
until it finally destroys them.

They could not have understood
how important it is to avoid anger,
not merely externally, but even in our thoughts,
because it darkens our intellect with bitterness
and cuts it off from the radiance
of spiritual understanding and discernment
by depriving it of the indwelling of the Holy Spirit.

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