"For a life lived totally surrendered to God. Only prayer can reach where no words or actions can."
"To be with God, in union with Him, praising Him, thanking Him and interceding with Him for the whole world and trying to imitate Christ and His Mother."
"Once I became aware of the call to religious life I knew I had to do something about it ... a bit like a person who can't ignore a toothache! On the other hand it was God who was really "doing something about it". I just tried to be open to His guidance."
"I knew deep down I'd never be free until I tried to answer the call"
"Materially, I had everything, but I was resisting the call. Once I entered, I felt such peace descending and all my restlessness went"
"I expected it to be hard, because I knew I was leaving everything familiar and forever, but I also expected it to be a happy life. It was just as hard as I had expected, but also, it has brought joy beyond all my wildest dreams."
"Yes, I do miss my family sometimes, especially during family occasions but somehow I feel closer to them now that I have entered."
"Am I fulfilled? ...strange paradox. Can you arrive at self fulfillment without self emptying? I have the capacity to transcend. In self transcendence I am focused on the other and on God. Now I am being led by values - these are chosen. This gives me my true identity."
"It has often been said to us "what a wasted life." True- Jesus, too had to contend with those words "why this waste?". But love doesn't count the cost. Love is its own justification."
St Francis' inspirational words to the Lord " You are all my riches" gave me a deep insight into what our poverty is."
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When we succeed in living in God’s time, open to the epiphany underlying every little happening and every commonplace gesture, we are in fact engaging in a truly contemplative exercise and making a declaration of freedom in the face of a world that suffers from a self-centred understanding of time which pushes people towards despair or mindless escapism. The contemplative is a witness to the truth that time is not money but relationship.
Giacomo Bini OFM