Father Jim Martin offers some parting thoughts on prayer in this last installment of his multi-part series. You can view all of Father Jim’s videos and other video segments on America’s new YouTube page.

And keep an eye on "The Good Word" for video reflections on Advent and Christmas from the editors.

Tim Reidy

Comments

Anonymous | 11/26/2008 - 2:16pm
"In the hour of teaching and of prayer there is no curtain separating man [woman] and his God. Even when many alien thoughts ascend in you, they are garments and covers behind which the Holy One, blessed be He, conceals Himself, and when you know about this, there is no longer any concealment." ~ Martin Buber, "Hasidism and Modern Man"
Anonymous | 11/26/2008 - 2:19pm
(Spanish) Nada te turbe; nada te espante; todo se pasa; Dios no se muda, la paciencia todo lo alcanza. Quien a Dios tiene, nada le falta. Sólo Dios basta. ~ Teresa of Ávila (English) Let nothing disturb you; let nothing frighten you; everything passes; God does not change, patience obtains all. Who has God, lacks nothing. God alone is enough. ~ Teresa of Ávila This is not my English translation. It is Thomas Merton's translation. I have never tried to translate written Spanish into written English. It is very difficult to explain the differences between the Spanish and the English. I will try to describe how this beautiful Spanish poem feels in Spanish. The sound of "nada"(nothing) is very forceful with two very distinctly pronounced "a's" that gives the word a thump, thump sound that seems almost military. It is a bossy word. The same can be said for "todo" (everything). The word "todo" really means more than everything. In this poem it means ALL in a very emphasized way. Teresa almost hid what she was trying to advise in this poem. In this poem she is mainly advising patience. The word doesn't appear till the middle of this short poem. She has you wait for it. She gets to use it with its strong definite article "la" (the) at the beginning of a line that seems to finally announce "patience" as a solution or really as the solution. The way Teresa worked in the phrase "la paciencia" makes patience a definite and singular and happy discovery. Definite articles are very frequent in Spanish yet in this little poem there is only one. Only one was needed. I will end by pointing to the word "sólo" (alone/only). When the word "sólo" is used with accent over the first "ó", it is a forceful word and the assumption is that there is no negotiation about what it is being said. In other words in this poem, God alone is totally and completely and utterly enough. Her verbs are fairly clear cut and really not very strong in this tiny poem.