*Alternate* Second Reading: Macrina Wiederkehr, O.S.B.: “It’s Time to Fold Your Tent”

“It’s Time to Fold Your Tent” by Macrina Weiderkehr, O.S.B.

Once again death’s mystery
holds us in its arms
and we are memoried
with a thousand things
you were and are, and now
always will be.

We celebrate this journey with a quiet shyness
always a little uncomfortable
with a mystery so deep.
But with hearts full of life
we hold out our hands
to receive the mystery of death
the gift of death
and sometimes we weep.

Eyes that see all the way in now
proclaim to us the new truth,
when you stand close enough to death
it isn’t death anymore.
Its new name is life,
yet those of us with earth-eyes
Still call it death.

There is really no death
for those caught up in God,
only a moment of passing over
a moment of folding up your tent
a hard, painful, giving-up moment.
It is always painful to let go.

We praise those
who had the vision to let go.
We praise God
who had the love to ask them
to let go.

O God of life
it is in our moments
of not letting go
that we truly experience death
and all the while
it is life that you have planned for us!

O God of life
dip us into the mystery of letting go
of folding up our tents
so we, your earthen vessels,
can bear the beauty of the breaking
and hold the fullness of life.

Do earth-people always call things
by the wrong name?
Is it death we celebrate?
Or is it life?
Or is it letting go?

I warn you
when God gives you the grace to let go
be prepared
for a radical transformation!

The words of Macrina Wiederkehr

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