Gregorian chants of love and devotion to Mary, the Mother of God, the Theotokos, the Star of the Sea. Beautiful and uplifting. Inspiring. Greet Christ through His mother. Body, soul and spirit. May we all receive the blessing of her example, told through these ancient songs of faith!  click here 



Recently, we saw a situation whereby a family member made an observation that was unfair and uninformed. The temptation: confront. And sometimes, we have to correct a situation, to speak up.


But when praying about a course of action, the word, "Silencio" came flying, surprisingly, into our thoughts.

Was this a "word of knowledge" from Padre Pio -- who exercised silence in the face of a terribly unfair accusation and course of action (by his bishop)?


There is power even in the pronunciation. It makes us contemplate that:

Silence is the beginning of prayer. It is the beginning of thought. It is the beginning of love. God is largely: silent. (Yet is anyone or thing remotely as powerful?)

In silence, Daniel knew God's Voice. God's Spirit leads men to silence and repentance. God's message to Nebuchadnezzar was conveyed through dreams -- in quiet. Silence leads to inspiration; it leads to understanding. It is rational. Yet, it is imaginative. Usually, it is calm. "Silence is often referred to in terms of space: the immensity inside, the cave of the heart, the oasis of quiet, the inner sanctuary, the interior castle, the sacred center where God dwells," notes one spiritual source.

There was the silence of the Manger. Silent night. It is a golden rule. Hold your tongue and you will hold your peace. Silencio. You don't usually regret what you have not said.

It is God's first language.

"Silence of the heart is necessary so you can hear God everywhere, in the closing of the door, in the person who needs you, in the birds that sing, in the animals," said Mother Teresa.

It is sweet still music. It illuminates. It "delivers you from the phantoms of ignorance," said a seventh-century monk. We receive no new information when we are doing the talking. Silence invites truth. A Russian proverb: it is better to get slapped in the face by truth than kissed with a lie. But when slapped unfairly: silencio.

Power exudes from silence. The Blessed Mother was a woman of few words. It generates power through what is humble. It is a discipline. It is a sacrifice. You can take back what you have not said but you can't take back what was said in anger. Scripture warns us (Proverbs) that the tongue is the most powerful and dangerous bodily member.

"Actions speak louder than words; let your words teach and your actions speak" -- Saint Anthony of Padua

We were once invited to stay overnight at the Trappist monastery at Gethsemane Farms, Kentucky, where at one time there had been a strict rule of complete silence. When we mentioned to one monk (who had been a room-mate of Thomas Merton for something like twenty years, but had never spoke to him) that it must be nice now that they can talk, he looked up with a quizzical expression and explained that actually he had preferred it when it was silent.

It is the atmosphere of connection. Silencio. In Europe and the Holy Land you see this one word on signs at church entrances. A person of few words speaks each word with power. When the time comes, God will come from your silence to right a wrong circumstance -- to take care of issues for you, powerfully, in ways you could not orchestrate.

This Christmas, don't worry about getting in your allotment of words, so much as holding tight to your peace, and in your tranquility uniting with the Prince of Peace.

Find joy in praying silently for everyone (no matter who) around you.

Speak softly, but carry a big Rosary.

[resources: A Life of Blessings]

[See also: Retreat announced for Orlando (February)]

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