Sunday, March 25, 2012

The Color of Prayer

I like the church when it is empty.  When all the worshippers are gone; when the priests have cast off their robes and left; when the golden globes are dark and the fans have stopped their restless whirring.  I like to sit with no one there except the pigeons croaking on the window sills and the bees humming their way in through half shut windows. I like to breathe in the scents of snuffed candles, burnt-out incense and dusty prayer books.

If I am very, very quiet, I can  hear the echoes of thousands of prayers,  the whispers of a million wishes, feel the weight of  wordless longings,  of unspoken pleas, that fill the air in the old rafters.

 If I am patient and watchful, I can sense then the Presence all around me, freed from where it had lain - between those hundreds of palms folded in devotion.

It drifts and fills the old stone walls, the dark shadowy corners, the cracked pews, the wooden crosses, the gaudy icons, the stained glass panes.  Everywhere!  It reaches up, powerful and strong- up, up, into the rafters, into every nook and crevice.  It searches out every plea, every dying echo of a prayer, lifts them all,lovingly, and sends each one out gently, to look for men to answer it!

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