How indispensable silence and prayer
Pope Benedict XVI visited a group of contemplative Sisters in Rome last week on the feast of their 15th century Foundress, Saint Francisca Romana.
He told them that he and the Cardinals of the Curia had just completed their annual Lenten retreat. And he added that he had felt once again how indispensable silence and prayer are.
He told them how appropriate it was to have their convent located in the very heart of the city. It was a symbol of the need to return the spiritual dimension to the center of the city’s existence, to give the many activities of Roman women and men their full meaning.
He told them your community, together with other communities of contemplative life, is called to be a sort of spiritual lung of society, so that the performance, the activism of Rome, is not empty of spiritual breathing, with its reference to God and his plan of salvation.
He told them Rome needs women and men who are all for God and for their neighbor. Rome needs women and men who are able to recollect themselves in prayer and then give generous and discreet service to their neighbors. If Rome needs it, so too does Dodge City.
On Ash Wednesday, Jesus told us in St. Matthew’s Gospel how to pray in secret. These Sisters do that for the city of Rome. I hope there are many women and men who also do that for the Diocese of Dodge City.
Bishop of Dodge City