It’s hit me pretty hard this year, in a way it didn’t really last time round, that for many of the people I train with, this will be the last time they celebrate the mysteries of Holy Week as lay people. I wonder, selfishly, how I’ll feel this time next year, with term finished and Palm Sunday approaching fast.
For many of us, this will be an especially difficult Holy Week, with the Church of England still recovering from many of its self inflicted wounds. So not only am I unsettled for the future of my confreres and me, I’m also worried about the state of the church. Times like this lead me to question my own road – and that always leads me to think of this quote from Thomas Merton:
My Lord God, I have no idea where I am going. I do not see the road ahead of me. I cannot know for certain where it will end. Nor do I really know myself, and the fact that I think that I am following your will does not mean that I am actually doing so. But I believe that the desire to please you does in fact please you. And I hope I have that desire in all that I am doing. I hope that I will never do anything apart from that desire. And I know that if I do this you will lead me by the right road though I may know nothing about it. Therefore will I trust you always though I may seem to be lost and in the shadow of death. I will not fear, for you are ever with me, and you will never leave me to face my perils alone.
If you’ve read this today, please pray for all who are currently training for the sacred priesthood. Even at college, it’s sometimes easy to get lost.