“Christ Pantocrator,” Saint Catherine’s Monastery, circa 6th century, Wikipedia.

Part 9: Worries of Faith and Doubt

Years of Irish countryside, splendor and
Mystery, attempting to answer questions
Of new followers. Why did Jesus die, why
Did he not live longer? Who can answer
Then and there? Night-haunting thoughts,
Cruel, unmerciful death, temple curtain
Torn, cloud-darkened sky covering Calvary.
If Jesus had lived to old age, how many
Followers would he have reached, healed,
Fed? Miracles of wine and water, fish and
Bread, his parables, holy fount of salvation
Not death by crucifixion cross.

Yes, I, Sister Muriel, understand Christ’s
Going into wilderness alone, for I have
Done same, rock-encircled Celtic hill forts,
Place of quiet solitude, reflection, heights
Amongst scudding clouds, closer to God
I feel. Yet, I do not face temptations dark,
No personal transformation from prophet
Or healer to divine. My calling are those who
Look to God through daily prayers for help
And health, growing seasons, rainy summers,
Bountiful harvests, lambs, calves, necessities
For surviving long Irish winters.

How do I answer farmers mourning Christ’s
Death? In simple ways, I try to explain: his
Life ended like seasons, spring, summer,
Fall into earth dormant winter, or rising and
Setting sun, such burdens he bore, mortal-
Divine. Secretly, I ponder concerns, vexing
Upon my heart. Yet, in faith, I accept that
Which I cannot change. Lo! As Christ’s
“Little children,” peasant farmers seek his
Kingdom. They do not question in doubt,
Greater understanding they seek.

“Christ with Martha and Maria,” Henryk Siemiradzki, 1886, Wikipedia.

My confession, I have struggled with faith,
As I have been touched by glories divine,
By those suffering with illness, lives taken,
Atrocities inflicted by men wielding sword
And spear. Whilst not concerned for self,
I worry for those who lack food, shelter,
Who live in poverty. Alas! Against adversity
They accept Christ. “But who do you say that
I Am?” Jesus asked.* For those on Irish isles,
Christ is savior, risen son of Mary, door, vine,
All things forgiving, miracles of healing, faith,
And love, realizations from high hilltops.

* Luke 9:20

This poem was derived from Luke 10:41-42 regarding two sisters
Martha and Mary. “Martha, Martha,” the Lord answered, “You
are worried and upset about many things, but few things are
needed, or indeed only one.” Poetically, Sister Muriel has taken
years to reach understanding, mystery and wonder known by
Martha’s accepting sister, Mary. Thanks for reading.    

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