The second Mars rover recently began its long trip to the mysterious red planet. The first rover was named “Curiosity.” This one is “Perseverance.” Its job is to excavate samples of rocks and soil and bring them back to Earth several years from now. Then eager scientists will analyze them to see if they can detect vestiges of ancient life—and even evidence that life could again thrive there. The names of the two rovers tell us something about what it means to be human seekers of knowledge and wisdom. Curiosity knocks on every door to see what surprises lie on the other side. But only perseverance holds us to the rigorous and sometimes tedious work of searching for the depths, the signs of life in an idea or question or the seemingly unsolvable problems that plague our world. Benedictines have a double mission: to love learning and to seek God. Both require curiosity and patient perseverance if life is to yield its riches.
By Mara Faulkner, OSB