“Every exit is an entrance for somewhere else” (Tom Stoppard). Many of the saints had the experience of starting over in life to follow Christ’s call. At the beginning of Christianity, St. Paul exited from being a well-educated Pharisee and Roman citizen, entering a new life as an itinerant preacher, writer and organizer. In the early Church, the young St. Augustine “lived large” and was an embarrassment to his family. He repented and became a bishop and Father of the Church. In the Middle Ages, St. Francis gave up all his wealth, entered into a life of poverty and humble service to others. St. Ignatius Loyola left the military to found the Jesuits. In our own time, Mother Teresa exited from teaching privileged girls and gave herself to helping dying street people in India. May we be alert to God’s invitations to exit situations and enter new aspects of life.
By Mary Jackle, OSB