Thin Places


The early Celts used to say that heaven and earth are only three feet apart, and that in the “thin places” the separation is even smaller.

Today, we sometimes stand mute, gazing at the Milky Way glowing in the night sky or waves dashing themselves against rocky coasts or mountain summits scraping the sky.

Thin places are not confined to the physical. There are thin places of the mind and of the soul, where the earthly encounters the transcendent.

God’s creation is intense with his divinity. Divinity embraces us and reveals itself if we but recognize it: a friend’s smile, an infant’s finger, a stranger’s kind remark.

An act of mercy, too, can bring a bit of paradise to earth, when we respond with charity to the beggar’s outstretched hand, the eyes of a starving child, the immigrant seeking refuge.

We hear in the Gospel story of the morning when the Apostles came in from fishing to find Jesus—whom they had seen crucified—waiting for them with a hot breakfast. None of them asked, “Who are you?” They stood in mute silence because they realized it was the risen Lord.

Our prayer today: In your great mercy, Heavenly Father, you have given us a creation alive with your divine presence. Help us always to cherish and advance it.

(Gasherbrum IV—at 26,001 feet, the 17th highest mountain on Earth)

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