St. Dominic’s Feast

St Dominic by BotticelliToday is the Feast of St Dominic, so the Order of Preach­ers is pray­ing, preach­ing and.…partying. They have much to cel­e­brate in the gift of St Dominic and his vision of a unique way for a life to  serve the Lord. There is quite a lega­cy of Domini­can saints- St Thomas Aquinas, St Albert the Great, St Cather­ine of Siena, St Mar­tin de Por­res, St Rose of Lima ‚to name just a few.

And of course we for­tu­nate ones have expe­ri­enced the real, grace-filled influ­ences of many Domini­can sis­ters and priests in our own lives.That brings me, of course,to Father Michael Kyte.….what a won­der­ful Domini­can he was. So often he spoke with great ten­der­ness of his Domini­can broth­ers, the com­mu­ni­ty. Father Michael told me often things like “Father Louie is so kind and always good to me”. Or “Oh Father Rick is so holy and so learned, a schol­ar; he reminds me of St Dominic”. Or (talk­ing to me on the phone) “I ‘m here in the laun­dry room,watching one of the senior Fathers iron­ing his habit. I am hum­bled watch­ing him as I real­ize he has been iron­ing his habit with such care and love every day for over six­ty years.” Father Michael saw all the good­ness and bless­ings in his Domini­can com­mu­ni­ty life.…and tru­ly loved his broth­ers.

Preach­ing and pray­ing were a giv­en for Father Michael. He always claimed he was ‘no aca­d­e­m­ic’ yet I know he stud­ied and read all the time. And all of us ben­e­fit­ed from how he shared his learning-“the fruits of con­tem­pla­tion”, if you will. Father Michael was a true son of St Dominic.

I read Alden Solovy’s newest poem on  this morn­ing. It’s beau­ti­ful-about mir­a­cles- all kinds, large and small. We’ve all expe­ri­enced them-gifts from our Heav­en­ly Father. Some­times the mir­a­cles are the spe­cial peo­ple in our lives. On this St. Dominic’s Day, I’m shar­ing this sim­ple, yet exquis­ite poem:

About Mir­a­cles
Majes­tic Sov­er­eign,
Source of awe and won­der,
When did You decide
To make dai­ly mir­a­cles so sim­ple,
So gen­tle, so qui­et and so small?
Did our fear of Your Voice
Echo­ing from the moun­tain top
Push You away?
Or was this Your plan all along?
To show us Your Glo­ry
In fire and smoke,
In the part­ed sea,
In the dark­ness and in the light,
And then to draw away
So that we would
Yearn for You to be near,
So that we would yearn
For your pow­er and might,
For Your holi­ness
And for Your sal­va­tion?
Or are You wait­ing, patient­ly,
To return, again, with signs
And with won­ders?


                     © 2014 Alden Solovy and All rights reserved

”I Do Will It”

The Leper by Ron DiCianni

So often this past year, I talked to Father Michael about Jesus ’ heal­ing of the lep­er, the sto­ry where the lep­er approach­es the Lord with a man­ner­ly “Lord , if you wish, you can make me clean.” And Jesus, stretch­ing out His hand and touch­ing the man, replies “I do will it. Be made clean”. There was just some­thing about that state­ment that spoke to me. I’d read and re-read the words “I do will it” and they were what even­tu­al­ly con­vinced me that Father Michael would be healed.

It turned out this was the gospel of the Mass on the very first day that Father Michael received chemother­a­py. I saw that as a most hope­ful sign! I con­stant­ly returned to “I do will it” for inspi­ra­tion as Father M’s jour­ney pro­gressed. I remem­ber Father Michael’s heal­ing ser­vice so well. Father Michael told us all that no mat­ter what hap­pened to him , there would be a heal­ing. I know Father Michael is healed accord­ing to God’s will. Father Michael is at peace. The rest of us are still a heal­ing in progress, some fur­ther along than oth­ers. It will take time. Father Michael is irre­place­able, a trea­sure.

I often read Alden Solovy’s web­site .His prayers are won­der­ful, sim­ple yet full of mean­ing. Today Solovy’s prayer for heal­ing brought back the feel­ing of intense fer­vor, the excite­ment of hope–and the peace of pray­ing for Father Michael. I’m shar­ing it because it touched me so much today. Per­haps some­one needs it:

Sim­ple Prayer for Heal­ing
G-d, grant Your heal­ing pow­er
To all in need,
Those whom I know,
______________ [list names],
And those unknown to me.

G-d, grant Your com­fort and con­so­la­tion
To all who grieve,
Those whom I know,
______________ [list names],
And those unknown to me.

Blessed are You, Adon­ai our G-d,
Ruler of the uni­verse,
Who lifts up the fall­en.

© 2014 Alden Solovy and All rights reserved.