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Koinonia

When the New Testament talks about coming to faith in Christ, it is always in terms of community. The way to grow into our full stature as children of God is not through competitive individualism, but being made part of a new family, a fellowship, or what the New Testament calls a “koinonia” of love. It is in this community, the Church, the Body of Christ, that we become who we most truly are meant to be, and gain our true identity.

-Br. Geoffrey Tristram, SSJE

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Look

Jesus says to us that “the last shall be first.” The last place you might have imagined yourself looking for God’s presence, the last person to whom you’d be inclined to give any heed or hearing or deference or care, may be the first place to look, especially if God’s presence to you seems unclear or uncertain in these changing times.

-Br. Curtis Almquist, SSJE

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Truth

Jesus seemed to be able to think and act outside of the cultural, social, and tribal context that he inhabited. That he did so is a testament to his own deep life of prayer and service placing him ever more deeply into the universal truth that is God.

-Br. Robert L’Esperance, SSJE

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Balm

Whatever our state of un-health, Jesus is there, working to make us well if we will only have faith. Whatever the problem, give it to Jesus in prayer and then get some rest. We may not feel “on the mend” right away, but healing will happen in GodÕs time. Jesus is our balm and our hope.

-Br. Jim Woodrum, SSJE

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Faith

Faith is not first of all believing that certain claims or statements about God are true. Genuine faith presumes a relationship with God. It implies a radical trust in God, faithfulness in one’s relationship with God, and a way of seeing the world as life-giving and nourishing rather than as hostile and threatening.

-Br. David Vryhof, SSJE

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Consolation

Those who are inclined to pray in moments of great duress do not need to be prompted. They simply pray out their hearts, as if their life depended on their connecting with God at that very moment. Which it does. And this is one of the great paradoxes of life: the potential for God’s presence, God’s light, God’s love, God’s consolation to be absolutely consummating when, at the same time, we are being absolutely consumed by suffering.

-Br. Curtis Almquist, SSJE

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Gaze

Religious icons are meant to be gazed upon as you would gaze upon one whom you love: with openness, expectation, affection and anticipation. When you gaze upon the one whom you love you do so in the expectation and anticipation that your loving gaze will be returned with equal affection.

-Br. James Koester, SSJE

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Mission

There is no greater mission, no higher calling that this: to be channels of God’s love and healing and salvation to every human being and to the whole of God’s creation.

-Br. David Vryhof, SSJE

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Solidarity

Openness to the compassionate solidarity of those who share your burdens – whether their burdens are identical to yours or not – can help you stay grounded in your true identity as a child and heir of God and a citizen of God’s kingdom.

-Br. Keith Nelson, SSJE

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