” Today once again I was touched by the Hand of God”

A Spiritual Reflection:   Today once again I was touched by the Hand of God

 by Br. Donald Dubay, CFC, Community of Francis and Clare

Brothers Don and Todd pray before the altar in the predawn hours before going forth to join the homeless. St. Anna’s Episcopal Church NOLA.

Forward by The Very Rev. Bill Terry:  The great mystics of the present and past ages have each enjoyed a unique and memorable connection to the divine. For Christians that connection is worked out in manifestations of Jesus, God, and often Blessed Mary the Mother of Jesus. Of course other manifestations of the real presence of the holy have been accounted for throughout history. In our small corner of the world some experience mystical (transcendent) experiences of the divine through faith. The following is what a 21st Century Mystic might look like. This is a reflection of two Brothers, A Franciscan, and Dominican who roamed the homeless environs of N. Claiborne Ave. brining a ministry of presence and a few gifts of socks and t-shirts. Take this short walk with them.

A new day has arrived under the Claiborne Overpass. Lifeless bodies are sprawled on the cement. Brother Todd and I split up to walk among our Brothers and Sisters to bring them blessing bags.  Some are awake but most are lying in the fetal position sleeping. Many have no Tent and simply use the cement as their sleeping mat. Their heads are in what appears to be very uncomfortable positions as the cement is their pillow.

Today as I walked prayerfully from one person to another and as I write this note I tearfully saw the baby Jesus in each one of these beloved people. Every single one of them were brought into this world as naked little babies and now as Jesus did bravely exist in conditions of emotional and physical discomfort. We may ask “Why Lord?”.

Today once again I was touched by the Hand of God as I saw Her face in the smiles of the waking faces of the poor who we humbly serve. Many whispered softly from their cement mat and said “Thank You”. Another gentleman extended his fist and dapped Brother Todd and myself and said “Thank You”.  I saw Jesus and wept again when I got in the car with Brother Todd to briefly explain what happened in much less detail than how I am explaining it now.

Please pray and serve the poor and homeless with gentleness and humility. It is the path to knowing and experiencing the grace and mercy of God.