Yesterday, I was writing about Dorothy Day and the Catholic Worker movement. Today, I am writing about Sister Theresa Aletheia Noble.
Maybe I am going through a "Catholic" phase.
Today's blog posting is inspired by an article in the May 15, 2021, edition of The New York Times. The article, written by Ruth Graham, is titled, "A Nun's Words of Comfort: 'You Are Going to Die.'" Of course, I am citing to the hard copy edition of the article. In online versions, the headline will differ.
"Suffering and death are facts of life," says Sister Aletheia. As Graham puts it, "Focusing only on the 'bright and shiny' is superficial and inauthentic."
In Sister Aletheia's own words, "We try to suppress the thought of death or escape it, or run away from it because we think that's where we'll find happiness, but it's actually in facing the darkest realities of life that we find light in them."
Do you buy it? I do. I think Sister Aletheia is right.
The expression "Memento Mori" means "Remember, you have to die."
That we all have to die is true, as we know, and remembering this can have the effect of making us joyously aware of the fact that "we aren't dead yet."
We are alive, right now, in this instant. This means that we can act, create, love one another and change the world. If we were dead, we wouldn't be able to do any of that.
Tomorrow, we might be dead. Memento mori!
As George Fox, the Quaker, said - and I have cited to him before:
Ye have no time but this present time, therefore prize your time, for your soul’s sake.
As Sister Aletheia says, "Let's be saints." Act. Create. Love one another. Change the world!
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