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I thirst.

I THIRST. "it is not coincidence that when the Church Fathers of the second, third, and fourth centuries read the Passion narrative in the Gospel of John, they fixed upon the piercing of Jesus' side, upon the flow of blood and water that issued there. They said that from Christ's mystical body (the church) as from his physical body, blood and water flowed. They said that God, the one for whom we so hungered, for whom we so thirsted, came and continues to come to us as food and as fountain.

"Artists of medieval Christendom gave visual form to the Church Fathers' insights. They painted the Fountain of Life: Christ dying, thirsting on the Cross, as the centerpiece of a great circular fountain, like you might find in a European town square where people came to draw the necessary water for life. In the fountain, men and women bathe, slake their thirst, and refresh themselves.

"In these midlife dimmings that sometimes happen, it has become more and more difficult to slake my thirst for God in the particular manifestations of church in which I find myself. Preaching rings hollow. Music, once the substance of prayer, becomes a battleground for conflicting liturgical tastes. Love takes the form of regulations beyond which we may not venture. Community grows cold. Issues divide us.

"As the deer longs for flowing streams, so my soul longs for you, O God. My soul thirsts for God, for the living God (Ps. 42:1-2)." (Wendy Wright, excerpts from "I Thirst" in Weavings, July/August 2000)
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Publication:U.S. Catholic
Article Type:Brief Article
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:Mar 1, 2002
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