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  • CFR Sisters

To Prepare an Altar

A meditation on the preparation of the Upper Room

I see sorrow in Your eyes.

I want to stay with You now more than ever, 

especially as I feel the weight 

of Your recent talk of death. 

But I want more to do whatever You tell me. 

And so I go and spend a Thursday, 

one unlike any other before or since, 

in the littlest of work. 

I dust ledges, 

I sweep a floor, 

I prepare a table. 

Just what You have told me to do.

I didn’t know You were allowing me to prepare 

an altar – 

that tangible surface, yes, 

but much more. 

A place deeper and deeper still.

In me.

The simplicity stilled my storm to a whisper, 

the littleness then begot a true silence, 

and, in that quiet, space was made and prepared. 

Space of longing, 



An altar.

To receive the sacrifice.

To bear the gift.

How I wonder, even years and decades later, 

at how You gathered us up 

and into Yourself 

in this humble, hidden way.

Oh Lord, I am not worthy.

But You are.

Sr. Magdalene, CFR Novice


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