The other day I came across an article in the ‘Angelus’ magazine of the Ordinariate of Our Lady of Walsingham, Issue 2, with the intriguing title, ‘Silent and Anonymous,’ in which the writer was reflecting on a conversation he once had with a Carthusian monk.

The writer confessed that, initially, he was of the opinion that this monk would have been making a far more valuable contribution to the Church if he had been ‘actively ministering in the world.’

The Carthusian had then explained to him that by entering into a life of silent contemplation ‘God would make his prayer more fruitful for the salvation of the world than anything else he could accomplish on his own.’ He also pointed out that whilst other people may be briefly impressed by such attributes as ‘cleverness’ and ‘self reliance’ whatever God accomplishes by our trust in Him lasts forever.

Whilst Oscar Wilde may have had the monopoly of wit and humour in his aphorisms, it’s not often that you come across those that are not only short and pithy, but also very wise. However, the writer has succeeded on both counts in producing a pair of powerful and thought-provoking statements relating to the above:

No method or technique or programme or anything else born of human industry compels the Blood of the Lord – but the humble petition of the sinner always moves Him to act.

This is the wisdom of God.’

The wisdom of God is foolishness to the world, but divine foolishness is wiser than the wisest man.’

To conclude, we may be prompted to reflect that to rely on God the Father to guide us through our life is a brave step when many, if not most, people would regard such a decision as foolish. But … ‘in the wisdom of God this is a hidden blessing through which new life can flow into the Church by our loving obedience.’