We were so happy to have Fr. Michael Schleupner here at the Center this week as he served as a spiritual director on our Directed Retreat and offered daily mass to our guests. Fr. Mike shared the following with his guests on their opening night and we thought that our online readers would appreciate these words to contemplate too. Let’s take a quiet moment to Focus and to Reflect.

Focus 

Mark 1:9-11          “Beloved”

In those days Jesus came from Nazareth of Galilee and was baptized by John in the Jordan. And when he came up out of the water, immediately he saw the heavens opened and the Spirit descending upon him like a dove; and a voice came from heaven, “Thou art my beloved Son; with thee I am well pleased.”

Do I know that I am God’s beloved daughter? beloved son?

Do I feel loved by God? beloved?

Is this the basis of my sense of self-worth or self-esteem?

Is this passage leading me in some other direction?

A Reflection

“Being a Christian, I first learned this word [Beloved] from the story of the baptism of Jesus of Nazareth. ‘No sooner had Jesus come up out of the water than he saw the heavens torn apart and the Spirit, like a dove, descending on him. And a voice came from heaven: “You are my Son, the Beloved; my favor rests on you.”’ For many years I had read these words and even reflected upon them in sermons and lectures, but it is only since our talks in New York that they have taken on a meaning far beyond the boundaries of my own tradition. Our many conversations led me to the inner conviction that the words ‘You are my Beloved’ revealed the most intimate truth about all human beings, whether they belong to any particular tradition or not.’

From Life of the Beloved by Henri J. M. Nouwen