Tuesday, September 24, 2013

The Bittersweet Beauty of Fall

Fall has come to New England. The mornings are chilly, the shadows are long, and the leaves are starting to change colors. It is a beautiful time of year, and yet, for me, it is tinged with a bit of sadness, for I know what is coming. This is the dying season. The days are growing shorter - the darkness of winter is coming. To keep going, I will hold onto the hope of spring. In the meantime, I came across this quote today in Atchison Blue: A Search for Silence, a Spiritual Home, and a Living Faith

Sr. Thomasita, a Benedictine nun, kept a journal as her friend Sister Mary Noel died of bone cancer in 1978. She shared the following passage:

I know of no beauty compared with the painful beauty of this past week with Sister M. Noel. She shared with us an experience she had as a young college student, when what she called "the flaming magnificence of autumn" caught her and held her. "I looked," she said, "at one particularly beautiful leaf as it slowly drifted to the ground. I picked it up and questioned how it had become so uniquely glorious. I realized that the leaf became beauty in its ready acceptance of all of life - wind, rain, sunshine. It ripened, taking in fully what was its life. And then when it had to, it had let go. It had opened itself completely to the Creator. I knew then that in my life I must do the same. The time would come too, to let go . . .

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