Reflection Day - Creative Waiting

Join Marist Father Michael Whelan sm over the next 12 days on an online reflection day “Creative Waiting”. This was recorded by Marist Laity Australia in a previous Reflection Day at St Patrick’s Church Hill. Father Michael is currently the parish priest of St Patricks’. Please join each day for about 5 to 10 minutes listening to the audio, and reflect on some key ideas and question.

Audio Starts here

DAY 1 of 12

The title of this reflection day is “creative waiting”. One of my confreres said to me last night “What are you going to be talking about?” He turned back to what he was doing and continued cook his spaghetti. He had nothing more worth to discover.

Think of a task between a faciliatory approach and a mastery approach. A participatory approach and a conquering approach. It is the way of our culture which promotes mastery and conquering. In our culture there are winners, and if you’re not a winner you are a?....If you are not a master, you are a victim. This is a bit like a cardboard cut-out but it is not far from the truth. We live in a culture of wilfulness and of pressing on and winning. And, you feel like a looser. If you do not buy it. This is very destructive way to live like this.

At the heart of the Christian life and at the heart of Marist Father Colin’s vision is the participatory and facilitative approach. This can be named as “Creative Waiting”. Waiting is not just passive. Waiting as where you turn up and you are active. You are facilitative and not a mastery way. You are there in a participative and not a conquering way. But you are there. This gives rise the presence of the Holy Spirit.

The key to Marist Spirituality is found in the notion of being present. How you are to me? Do you turn up as a conquering or do you turn up as a facilitator? As a facilitator you are present in another way. If you turn up as a mastery, you are present in a certain way, but if you turn up as a participant you are present in a different way.

There are three movements which support this kind of presence. These movements help to give rise to presence and in turn rise out of this presence. If you are Marist, you will be connected. You are a connecting person. Brokenness may be part of this. But you will be a person of conversion. Your whole life will be one of constant transformation. And by implication, transforming. You will be a person of conversation. Not monologue. You will enter into a giving and receiving. You will see life as mutual. Those three keys – “Connecting”, “Conversion” and “Conversation” will make you present in a certain way. A Marist way.

As you are present in this certain way, this will give rise to more connectedness. More conversion. More conversation.


15 January 2021

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Marist Father Michael Whelan

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