During Eugene’s stay at Notre Dame du Laus where he was staying out of obedience to keep out of harm’s way from the cholera epidemic he found himself missing his community, especially those that he was incredibly close to like Fr. Henri Tempier. He wrote to Henri on August 1st a short note stating how their separation affected him.
“When I’m – I won’t say separated from you, this often happens we are under the same roof – estranged from you, I am missing something that is essential to my existence. I am only half-alive and very gloomy.” (530:VIII in Oblate Writings)
I have experienced this in my own life, this feeling of being only half-alive and gloomy. I find that I am like this when I am separated from those I am especially close to, those I love – whether the separation is physical or due to disposition. I notice it most keenly in my relationship with God – God who is an integral part of me, and who if I try to ignore it is like trying to deaden myself.
I wonder if the connection is not God – God within each of us. Such is the power when we give ourselves over to God totally in love, to others – our families and communities, specific people and wider groups. Such is the power when we give ourselves wholly in love.
When I am with my communities I tend to come more alive – I live, I learn, I give of myself and I receive – so important that – I receive from them. Our connection at the deepest level is love, is God and sometimes with some the connection is stronger or more vital. Why do I connect so keenly with some? Why can I identify with some and their experiences in a deeper way?
Each of these connections of love make it possible for me to go deeper entering in and passing through my woundedness. With them I dare to scale the walls of ignorance and unlearning, to break free of the invisible chains of violence and unworthiness. These who I am so intimately connect to through love, through God – they are my joy.
How greatly we are blessed.