Friday 18 May 2018

Transcending Words

This week has been framed by artwork and history for me. Early in the week I observed the installation of the artwork to commemorate an institutional and personal failure to protect the vulnerable in our community: students who were abused while members of our community. There are no words, no gestures that can fully express the sorrow at such a failure and none that can fully repair the damage. But we must not look away from these moments in our history, or we deny their existence and so we would fail to learn from them. This is where art can help us bridge the gap where words and gestures fail us. Art can help us express meaning that transcends words. I encourage all members of the community to encounter the new sculpture in our reflection grotto and to pray there for all members of our community who are in need of healing, most especially those who survived abuse while at the College, and pray also for ourselves, that we may always strive to protect those who travel life with us who need our protection the most.


I rarely process black and white, but this image just seemed better that way. I shot it really early in the morning as a storm was passing me on the New Zealand coast.

I’ve aways felt attracted to the image because of the movement from darkness to light. The sense that there is always a movement towards better skies. That’s what most of us need to do, just look toward the horizon and go toward the light.

What’s the light you need to be moving to right now? Can you be grateful for it even if there’s some rough water before you get there?

Fr Jack McLain SJ