Fr. Jim Martin, S.J. Is Not Jesus And Neither Am I

Fr. Jim Martin, S.J. has a wonderful piece over at the Jesuit Post today on the 5 Best Pieces of Jesuit Wisdom He’s Ever Heard.

My favorite of the 5 pieces has been one that has been spoken to me by my famed Jesuit spiritual directors, Jim Mcdermott, SJ, Rocco Danzi, SJ, and Br. Chris Derby, SJ in some form. It sounds simple but for those of us who truly try to achieve much, and of whom much is asked, we may indeed suffer from a messiah complex. Fr. Jim reminds us that we are indeed not the messiah.

“You’re not Jesus.” After philosophy studies, I worked with the Jesuit Refugee Service in Nairobi, Kenya. It was fantastic work. (Needless to say, I had gotten over my worries about working in the developing world: I asked to go!) But gradually I started to fret about doing all that needed to be done. Our work was helping East African refugees start small businesses, which meant: meeting with them on a regular basis; checking on their businesses (tailoring shops, bakeries, restaurants, chicken farms); helping them navigate their way through government agencies; arranging for them to get medical help when they were sick; and just listening to them. How could I do it all?

After a few months, I confessed to my spiritual director, George Drury, a New England Jesuit stationed in Nairobi, how overwhelmed I felt. “Where did you get the idea that you had to do everything all at once?” he said.

What a dumb question, I thought. Well, I said, that’s what Jesus would do. He would visit them. He would check on their businesses. He would fix their problems. He would help to heal them. He would listen to them. And George said, “That’s true. But I’ve got news for you: you’re not Jesus! No one person can do everything. And even Jesus didn’t heal everyone in Palestine.” Accepting my limitations and my “poverty of spirit,” that is, my own limitations, helped me to do my best and leave the rest up to God.

Later on another spiritual director put it more succinctly: “There is Good news and there is the Better News. The Good News is that there is a Messiah. The Better News is that it’s not you!”

And it’s not me either. I’ve spent the last few days feeling blue that I had to cancel a retreat scheduled for this weekend because there just wasn’t enough interest. One of my colleagues reminded me that on our very secular campus providing a rich spiritual experience might just be a bit too advanced for our students–especially when we offer more than one in a given year. Perhaps smaller steps are called for? The term retreat often connotes “advanced” for many. Our student leaders don’t even think that it’s for them. One even said “I’d rather do habitat than sit around talking with others all weekend,” clearly not understanding the purpose of the retreat or even just being too afraid to be a bit vulnerable with others, preferring “doing over being” and never letting things get too deep with others and just keeping it superficial. It’s Christian Smith’s “Moral Therapeutic Deism”–essentially, a spiritual motto of “Just be nice because that’s all God requires” and not much else. It’s why alternative breaks get sold out quickly and the deeper more spiritual elements take a lot more effort.

Or not…

As a spiritual director I need to pay attention to the fact that these students need great care to open up to these deeper experiences. That I need to be patient with that.

Our students often don’t have the experiences that we have and nor do many even trust us enough to give them more than a free dinner. We are not even close to being trusted sources for many of the students. And I don’t know about you but I’m not going to go away with a bunch of people that I don’t trust. So why should they? More time, more time, much more time is needed to be spent with these students in settings that allow us to talk with them and to deepen their experience of college. Then and only then, will they be able to trust us enough to head away for a day or so on a deepening experience.

I often think that I have to do it all. And the truth is that I can’t. Doesn’t that just suck? God has to work on these people, to open them to the experience of His love and to use us in Campus Ministry where we can be most effective. But people’s conversion to being open depends on them and their openness to what Jesus offers them. I can’t change that and it happens on God’s time, not mine.

I’ve been thinking about the students that I have taken on retreat and sure enough, they’ve been the students who have gotten to trust me through break trips, casual conversation, experiences in classes, or even Sunday mass (imagine that!).

So today I will shake the dust from my feet and head out to gather the medical students for a lunchtime lecture. The few students who were interested in our retreat will get a doodle for a day of reflection down the road. And we’ll start trying to build up the trust factor a bit more. Perhaps by semester’s end next year, we’ll be able to pull off a retreat.

Until then, I’ll let Jesus continue to work on both them and me.

Running Late and Yet On Time

I’m delayed in a Minneapolis airport heading home. I’m hoping to make the 8PM mass where I’m scheduled to give a reflection and it occurs to me that Jesus also was running late in our gospel today. In fact, he was so late that his friend, Lazarus, who was extremely ill had already died.

Being separated from those we love or from things we’d like to do is one of the big anxieties that we all face. When that separation is more permanent, such as in the death of a loved one, it becomes one of the great tragedies of human life. And God intimately understands that kind of anxiety because we hear that Jesus weeps over his friend’s death.

There’s an old saying that my friend Fr. J. Glen Murray often uses and he says that even when God shows up late somehow he’s right on time. And here Jesus comes in late and yet he’s also right on time…on time to change the faith of those who thought there was no hope left. Those who were separated from their dear brother.

Husbands and wives and parents and children often become distraught when one of their loved ones dies. But our gospel today reminds us that Jesus’ love for us is stronger than death and that even when it seems that we are separated from one another, we are actually closer together than we may think.

My colleague Tim Matovina at Notre Dame tells another story of separation. A young Hispanic woman was from a very simple family. She earned a scholarship to college at a time when in Hispanic culture, women didn’t become educated. But her father was a wise man and he insisted that she go on to University. She was excited but then as the time grew close for her to leave this close knit family, she realized that she would be separated from them. She told the wise old man of her fear and he said sweetly,

“Hija, there is no need to worry. When you get to that big university, go to the University Church or the Newman Center or wherever they have Catholic mass. Then know that I am also at mass. And because of that we will be closer than we are right now in that great mystical experience of being united to Christ’s body.”

And he added in Spanish “Nos menos en la communion.” (I will see you in communion).

Years later, the father died and the young woman at her father’s wake retold that story and when she was done she said, “Papi, Nos menos en la communion” and she kissed his body goodbye knowing deeply and with great faith that she still was connected to him . God always makes a way out of no way!

You see the message of the gospel is that God cannot bear to be separate from us. Even when we separate ourselves from God by choosing sin, God calls us out of our own dark tombs; out of the places that cause us to become dead. When we cut ourselves off from those that need us. When we are only concerned with our own self-satisfaction and die to self-sacrifice. And most importantly when we are hopeless and we think that God has run too late to satisfy our anxieties.

Even when all seems hopeless, God offers us something more, and it always comes just on time. Can we believe that? Or are we destined to be Lazurus–dead in a stinky tomb, bound from head to foot in our own prison?

Or can we have the faith that calls us to believe that God’s love can even overcome death. Perhaps that’s why we need Lent. To remind ourselves that our lives are always mystically connected to Jesus, to the disciples and to all those who have ever come around this table to share in the body of Christ.

As Lent comes to a close soon and as graduation nears, we soon will separate. And there’s a sadness that goes along with that. But let us all remember one certain truth. That no matter where life takes us and no matter when death takes us from each other…and even when jet delays keep us miles apart….

We will always see one another in communion… forever.

Convicted by Christ

So I’m continuing to blog on my “preparation days” regarding my experience of the 19th Annotation retreat (an Ignatian retreat in daily living–think of it was the 30 day retreat stretched out over a longer period of time). We’ve been encouraged to journal after our required hour of prayer and I’ve been able to do so, but am finding that I do the journaling much better if I turn it into a blog post. It may be my own vanity or pride or a way to check blogging off my to do list–we’ll see. But right now I’m thinking it’s bringing me much closer in seeing God’s presence in my life.

This is the last week of “preparation” before we plunge into the exercises themselves and I am grateful for these days. There has been much to consider. I’m focusing on how easy it is for me not to believe that God can be all I really need. That I am restless and anxious until I turn to God and that I often don’t choose God–but prefer to choose a controlled activity or idle busyness as distractions from where God wants me to spend time.

And so, from Second Corinthians, we take up our pre-prayering this day:

For the love of Christ impels us, once we have come to the conviction that one died for all; therefore, all have died.
He indeed died for all, so that those who live might no longer live for themselves but for him who for their sake died and was raised.
Consequently, from now on we regard no one according to the flesh; even if we once knew Christ according to the flesh, yet now we know him so no longer.
So whoever is in Christ is a new creation: the old things have passed away; behold, new things have come.

Conviction. It often has a negative context as a word on its own, doesn’t it? But conviction often leads me into my next plan of action. If I really believe that God is all I need and that God can redeem me, then how might I live my life differently from someone unconvicted?

Do I really believe? When tragedy strikes do I remain centered, nay run to find God at my center? Or am I more demonstratively arrogant and turn my conviction into a way to control others, to get them to believe me and my own thoughts, rather than to remain open to their journey of faith.

When I rejoice in realizing God’s activity in my life, is it truly joy, or a way to be noticed? Do I allow God to create me anew or is that often too scary? Can I let myself be “ruined for life”, by living more simply, or stretching my comfort zones and living my convictions a bit more in daily life?

I rejoice today in the fact that I am not perfect and God dares to love me anyway.

Who do I dare to love, not merely in return, because God has shown me love, but rather because of a conviction of that love that God has for us in redeeming all things.

Do I believe enough to be convicted? Is my life the evidence of a belief that God can make all things new again? In short, redemption.

I fear that I remain a free man. Free from God’s call to places that I dare not go–the dark places where I am weak and think that God cannot bring me from the temptations where I sin mightily. I dare not be convicted–for to be convicted is to be trapped. Trapped in love for all of humanity. Ruined for life. Unable to live any longer in laziness and fear and sin. To be convicted is to believe that God can make in me a new creation.

Today I pray for the spirit of conviction. May God lead me into a place where I can feel the peace of God’s power. The power that can change anything–that God can make a way when there is no way.

“Will you be convicted, Mike?”

God calls me. Do I believe?

And I must answer, “I do believe, Lord. Help my unbelief.”

Deaf Interpreters: Jesus is Not Like Godzilla in Today’s Gospel

This comes from Amy Smith Delamer at the wonderful University of Dayton. (Go Flyers!) She noted on Facebook today that today is the Feast of the Body and Blood of Jesus (Corpus Christi). Today’s Gospel is the Feeding of the 5000 but to the deaf community in some places the Gospel could have a whole other meaning.

“There is this wonderful woman — Jenny. She’s 78, and she speaks at (a conference I go to) every year. She tells the story of just beginning to interpret (for the deaf community) at her church, and, not knowing that there are different signs for “feed” and “eat”, she told the deaf community in her church that Jesus ATE the 5,000!”

My wife who is a deaf interpreter at mass will love this story. She’s got a bunch of stories likes these but this one is one of the funnier ones I’ve heard. Thanks, Amy.

BTW…I own both of those figures pictured. Scary.

Caught in Jesus’ Net

You can’t be something that you’re not.

It sounds like an easy platitude to follow–be yourself. But quite often we choose to be something other than who we really are. Something other than who God calls us to be.

Many of us try to choose a career or a way of life that will make us comfortable rather than something that we think will fulfill us. And when it doesn’t, we put on the mask. The mask that tells everyone that I’m doing OK. I’m just fine right here in my nice little life.

In fact for about ten years of my own life…I wore that mask.

I always felt like I should be working in the church. I was afraid to admit that I felt more alive when I was running retreats, participating at mass, doing community service, or going on a mission trip. I was afraid to even explore the idea of doing some form of ministry, so instead I chose broadcasting, a career that I thought was glamorous and lucrative and exciting. And I was pretty good at it too. But each day I went to work I found myself being less and less excited about who I was. I even interviewed Michael Jordan one day and found myself less than taken with the experience.

“You should be much more excited about this than you are!” a friend noted.

But I wasn’t.

I was a lot like Peter. Because Peter thinks that he’s fisherman. But Jesus knows that Peter is a Pope.

And I thought I was a broadcaster but Jesus knew that I was really a preacher and lay minister.

And like Peter, I had all the excuses, “I’m not good enough to minister to God’s people. Or smart enough. Or holy enough. Peter denied Jesus three times and I have my own sins that I sometimes still think make me unworthy.

And like Peter I know that Jesus is alive. Peter has witnessed the resurrected Jesus twice and this still hasn’t gotten him past his own fears and guilt and sin.

So Peter quits.

The Greek translation of the words “I’m going fishing” in today’s gospel can also mean, “I’m going back.”

I can just hear Peter…“It’s over. I’m not anything more than a simple fisherman. And a fisherman fishes!”

This is the one who ran, not walked, but ran to that tomb when he heard he was alive. He is the one who saw Thomas put his finger into his wounds and his hand in his side. Peter is the one who jumps into the water at the very sight of Jesus. But he’s also the one who decides to just go fishing–despite the good news of Jesus resurrection.

Now Peter and the others have been fishing all night and no fisherman that is worth his salt ever wants to be caught with an empty net. It seems that if Peter is a fishermen, then he is not very good at it. And if we remember back to the time when Jesus first called Peter and the disciples they weren’t too good at fishing then either.

And Peter seems to have learned nothing from that time when he said “Depart from me, Lord, for I am a sinful man.”

But who is the real fisherman? Isn’t Jesus is the one who fishes for all of us time and time again? And when he catches Peter, just as he catches all of us, he catches a sinner.

But Jesus shows him that his net has enough room to love the entire world. 153 fish is no accident. It represents each country that was known to man at that time. There is room for all people, even sinners in Jesus’ net.

And then, Jesus asks Peter to come over to that charcoal fire–talk about awkward. When Jesus tells him to come over to that fire you can almost hear the hesitation…

“The charcoal fire, Lord?”

“Yes Peter, you know like the one where you denied me by three times while you warmed yourself.”

But it is there where Peter brings those denials with him, that he finds that Jesus love is strong enough to hold those sins and to forgive them. The net unlike that first catch at the call of the disciples does not tear this time—for this is the resurrected Jesus, who defeats sin and division and even death and whose love for us despite our own failings still reaches out again and again.

Sins sometimes weigh us down and cause our nets to be too heavy for us and we can feel like we’re drowning. But Jesus is able to bring our nets to the surface–he sees these sins for what they are and he dispenses with them –and feeds us with new life here each week, just as he feeds Peter by that charcoal fire.

When we experience that kind of love—shouldn’t we be transformed? Shouldn’t that kind of love make us all want to go out and bring that same love into the world?

Or are we content to just sit in a boat?

“Simon son of John, do you love me more than these?”

What Jesus is really asking is, “Simon—you love me more than FISHING, don’t you?”

Then feed my lambs. Tend my sheep. Feed my sheep. Stop running away from me! I have already forgiven you. I will be all you’ll ever need. I will feed you so that you won’t ever be hungry so why are you FISHING?

Simon gets offended when Jesus asks that third time–because Simon is still simple Simon. And that Simon is not much of a Peter.

Simon is still too afraid to believe his love for Jesus will be enough. He is too afraid that he’ll deny Jesus all over again. He’s too caught up in his own sinfulness to be able to become the man that Jesus knows he can be—the man we see in our first reading today who when threatened with even prison and death goes right back into the temple and preaches about the Jesus who has indeed transformed Peter and who can transform all of us. And Peter even boasts that he stirred the place up so much that they considered him a troublemaker.

t’s an easy thing to buy into this idea that Jesus’ love might not be enough. Especially the past few weeks when we continue to hear about the sins that has weighed our church down. The cold, hard facts of our church’s pedophillia scandal has been all over the papers and it’s caused many people to question what we are all about. It’s a fair question, I suppose. Perhaps some of you have heard it from your friends too. It’s been a trying time and I know that I have had to answer many questions from people who wonder just how I can even call myself a Catholic without dying of embarrassment. And while many should be brought to justice for what they’ve done–it is up to each one of us to also believe that through us Jesus can heal this division. That we can reach out in love to those who have suffered at the hands of our own clergy. That our hands and feet can be those of Jesus reaching and walking with those caught up in anger and pain and sadness.

What is it that keeps us from thinking that we are not enough? What sends us back to the fishing boat? Fishing for more than Jesus and ending up feeling empty.

If we believe that Jesus is all that we need–what would others say about our faith then? Can’t we proclaim that Jesus is indeed all we need with our lives of commitment that will inspire others to see that our faith is not based in human beings who are doomed to make mistakes, but rather, our faith is based in the one who continues to defeat death and suffering and sin.

Our faith is based in the one who asks if we can love Him more than everything else?

Our faith compels us to come here each week and eat from this table and know that this meal–this Jesus, is enough for us to overcome anything.

And Jesus asks us “Do you love me enough to believe that?”

I hope we can believe that. Because if we can, the power of that love can indeed transform us into all that God knows we can be.

“Do you love me more than these?”

I do believe Lord, help my unbelief.

Peace Be With You

Today’s gospel places the disciples in the upper room after hearing about the two disciples who were on the road to Emmaus.

Jesus appears before them and utters those words of comfort: “Peace be with you.”

We say those words rather casually when we offer the sign of peace at mass but in this context can you imagine what they truly meant. The disciples thought they were seeing a ghost! Moreover, they were stuck immobile in the upper room unable to move, even with the Good News given to them by the women and by the two on the road to Emmaus. Indeed fear can keep us paralyzed.

So those words of peace are what calms their troubles. When I do imaginative prayer with this gospel I place myself as one of the disciples, I want to believe that Jesus is really there but then I doubt it.

But when he eats that piece of baked fish–I can almost hear myself saying “That’s the Jesus I know! He’s the one who was always eating and drinking with us! Those people threw him on the cross and killed him but he’s back and he’s still hungry! Somehow that figures!”

I could almost hear myself teasing Jesus, “Oh sure, save some for us will ya?” And Jesus would smile back at me and maybe even break a piece of fish off and hand it to me and perhaps even offer it and then chomp it down instead of giving it to me. “You want a piece, Mike? I’ll bet you do! Gulp! HAHAHAHAHAHAHA!”

I also noticed in the reading of this gospel that Jesus merely says to look at his hands and feet–but there are no mention of any wounds here. Could he NOT have wounds? Could this Jesus be completely healed of those wounds and could that be what he is pointing to–so that the disciples believe that ultimately death cannot kill God and that resurrection makes one whole again?

When we are in our darkest moments do we believe that Jesus can enter into our dark fortresses that we build to try to isolate ourselves and keep others at bay? Do we believe that there is no door that Jesus can’t open and when he does, even when we aren’t expecting it, are we ready to accept the peace that he offers with that entrance and offer some small token of hospitality?

Or do we try to slam the door? We can try to keep God out but somehow the strong driving winds of Pentecost find us eventually. It seems to me that the peace that we all crave can be found if we just open ourselves up to not hiding from God–especially when we feel shameful or alone. We need God then more than ever and instead we decide to go into that upper room and stay there.

“Peace be with you,” Jesus utters. And we hear that.

What do we do when that invitation comes to experience the peace that comes along with realizing that God can defeat death and calm all our fears?

Do we start celebrating by eating and drinking with Jesus or do we just stay put in our own misery and faithlessness. Thinking that God couldn’t possibly do anything for us?

How Will You Enter Holy Week?

At our staff meeting at St. Joseph’s yesterday we meditated on the Gospel that opens the Palm Sunday procession. Jesus enters into Jerusalem riding on a donkey and there is much rejoicing.

Our business manager, Ken Wells, provided the insightful comment that different age groups might view this passage differently. That younger people see him riding on an animal and that a great party is about to happen. Teens might see it slightly differently knowing what happens to Jesus in about a week and adults might foresee the inevitable crucifixion and death and see a lowly Jesus who will sink even lower into a shameful death as a criminal.

I would add that perhaps people of different economic status would also look at this scene via a different lens. The poor see a man who can’t even afford a horse, riding in on a mule who may have been stubborn and caused the ride into Jerusalem to take longer than usual and perhaps be a rocky entry into the Holy City and to Jesus’ eventual demise. The rich, especially those with political power, might be apt to see a man who is making a statement. The people rejoice at the lowliness of this entry as opposed to Pilate who enters with Chariots and horses on the other side of town virtually unnoticed. Is Jesus “making an ass” out of Pilate? The religious authorities also miss the point when they ask Jesus to rebuke his disciples. Perhaps Jesus is chiding them a bit as well?

What kind of entry to we make when we choose to follow Jesus? Is it “all about us” when we make a grand entrance in a large procession filled with pomp and circumstance? Are we more subtle in how we “make an entrance” into someone’s life who needs us to be Christ for them? Needless to say, Jesus does make a spectacle of himself in front of so-called “elegant” people. Are we willing to be “a fool for Christ” as well, risking embarrassment and shame for the sake of Jesus and the Kingdom of God?

How will we enter Holy Week? Do we enter overly haughty because we are overly proud of our Lenten observance? Or have we truly died to our old selves, grown a bit more humble throughout these 40 days and realized that we indeed deserve no more than an ass to sit on? Have we gotten in touch with the poor and seen our part in depriving them of even the basics? Moreover, have we prayed enough? Have we taken time away from our busy lives to get back in touch with God? Has that Lenten experience changed us and served as a reminder of who we must become?

Today let us be mindful of our own tendencies to forget who we need to be and how we must set aside our own horse and chariot (or Mercedes-Benz perhaps?) and take the simple ride on a not so comfortable donkey. For it is in that discomfort that we come to discover all we must become for each other and how we find who God is for us.

Today’s Inspiration: Mary Did You Know?

This coming Sunday, we will read in the Gospel about the wedding feast at Cana, where Mary plays a critical role in Jesus’ entering his public ministry. And so we pray…

And while we know, that Mary’s child is the great I AM, do we always rejoice with music and dancing as she must have after his first miracle? Let us meditate on this miracle throughout the week.

Reflection for Sunday’s Gospel

Today’s Gospel gives me much to reflect on

Taking a child, he placed it in the their midst,
and putting his arms around it, he said to them,
“Whoever receives one child such as this in my name, receives me;
and whoever receives me,
receives not me but the One who sent me.”

We’ve been talking a lot here about children being a bit of a handful for parents at mass and indeed we all have had experiences of that being true. We’ve seen soccer moms who have all they can do to get their children to simply sit still at mass. We often talk a good game about passing on the faith to our children but don’t really know the best way to teach them about Jesus.

It is Catechetical Sunday and we owe a great deal of gratitude to those who formally teach our children the Catholic faith, prepare them for their first sacraments and in general, provide them with spiritual guidance. But ask any teacher and they will most likely agree that it’s these children who often teach us more about Jesus than we teach them.

A quick story…OK maybe not so quick…but I will do my best to condense each…

I was a camp counselor for 6 years and there is one story that I always remember.

Mark Kissell was a soft-spoken, introverted 5 year old who wasn’t very athletic. A bit of a hothouse flower, he was afraid of playing anything with a ball. I even rolled the ball to him once and he ran away from it. He wasn’t enjoying camp in fact, he was afraid of getting out of the car some days.

But Marc was such a sweet kid. He would always share toys and was polite to his counselors. In fact, his favorite words seemed to “excuse me.” His brother, Andrew, a bit more outgoing, would try to get him to play more but Marc was just afraid.

So I decided that Marc was going to be my project for the year. A small victory would be to get him to play catch with me. Everyday I’d start to throw the dodgeball to him a little harder and he’d become more comfortable catching and throwing and even missing the ball wasn’t such a big deal anymore.

He graduated to a heaver basketball. And began to learn to dribble and shoot. For days he got nowhere close to the basket. But a little practice got him to hit the rim of the basket on one afternoon. I knelt down to him and said “Marc, you are so close to getting that ball in the basket…just a little more ooompf this time and you’ll do it!”

Marc closed his eyes, visualizing that ball going in as I had taught him. He took the ball and launched it towards the basket…and as the ball floated into the basket…swish!…his eyes grew so wide and his smile so bright that I don’t think I’ve ever seen anyone look that happy again. I hoisted him on my shoulders and we ran around the gym. He hugged me so tightly and his mom was so proud at the end of the day. For me, it was a moment when I realized what joy really consisted of and what I had experienced was an opportunity not to experience accomplishment but to experience the joy of newness…of seeing things through the eyes of a child. The amazement of a child–the sheer pleasure of simplicity was a moment where Jesus was clearly present in a very vivid way. That moment for Marc and I was over 23 years ago, but I remember it like it was yesterday. The world seemed to slow down and God was indeed fully present…I just knew I was there because I needed to understand this gospel passage:

“Whoever receives one child such as this in my name, receives me;
and whoever receives me,
receives not me but the One who sent me.”

When we are with children we have a great responsibility to see the awe that they see, to recapture our own amazement for the mundane, to see world embued with God’s grandeur. We often miss that. We miss the giggling exuberance of children in favor of our own jaded adulthood. We look for God’s grace and often find it hard to find.

Until we see God all over again through a child’s eyes.

Jesus destroyed death and includes us in his life…but do we ever have a child’s enthusiasm for something so grand? When we get on line for communion do we have a childlike anticipation of receiving Jesus into our bodies, or is it just another “thing to do”?

Perhaps each time we hear a baby cry at mass, or a rambunctious child in church we might want to think that they cannot help their wailing because they can’t understand why we too are not stirring in our souls!