Wednesday, November 07, 2007

A life of sanctity

Currently, we're attending a seminar on prayer.

A Carmelite nun (she's an extern sister) gives us inputs on prayers. The program is more on the spirituality of St. John of the Cross and Teresa of Avila. It feels heaven because even before she came here, I was already immersing myself by reading their works (I finished reading the biography of Teresa and at present, I'm reading "The ascent to Mount Carmel," a literary classic by St. John of the Cross). So, more or less, the terms she's using are more or less familiar to me.

My formation in Canlubang emphasized more on Ignatian spirituality (the focus is on the use of the intellect in praying) and being given an alternative method to pray is indeed reinvigorating.

Aside from the inputs on prayer, she would refer to the lives of Teresa and John once in a while. She knows them better, and her inputs are big help in providing me the background of these great mystics. I realized that I am a born fanatic. When I was a kid, I used to glorify superheroes. I'd watch over and over again movies of Superman and Spiderman (both in betamax format) and when I was a teener, I started idolizing movie personalities (so baduy!).

When I entered the seminary, I found myself in awe encountering priests and brothers who were considered legendary because of their virtues and achievements.

Now, in the confines of the novitiate, I am befriending great men and women found in the hagiography section of our library. So far, I finished reading a thick book on the life of Teresa. I started reading the autobiography of Ignatius of Loyola, and now, I will start on the "Confessions" (St. Augustine's autobiography).

And lest my Salesianity professor read this post, I also finished reading the lives of our "homegrown" saints. I started with St. John Bosco (2 volumes of Biographical memoirs and the Memoirs of the Oratory) Blessed Rinaldi, and went on with the life of Blessed Rua. And of course, I also read the life of Dominic Savio, one of the youngest saints in our Church today.

I hope that my associating with these great people (albeit, vicariously, that is, by reading) may not only give me knowledge of the brand of sanctity they have left behind, but more importantly, with God's grace, my life be transformed into like them: a constant, burning union with my Creator.