Igniting Our Values
Igniting Our Values

March 17, Tuesday

Apostolic Availability

In today’s reflection, writer Christopher Lorenc draws on his long association with two major religious traditions: the Ignatian “contemplative in action” and the Camaldoli monastic/hermetic. Chris invites those who aspire to Apostolic Availability to emulate Jesus’ simplicity.

Scripture Readings

Sunday Readings - Week 4

2 CHR 36:14-16, 19-23
EPH 2:4-10
JN 3:14-21



A procedural note: our reflections and prayers will refer to the Sunday readings for the week, not the daily readings.

Daily Reflection

Never Busy
by Christopher Lorenc

Notice how un-busy Jesus is. One day He’s overturning tables and driving out money changers from His father’s house. Then Nicodemus is visiting Him secretly at night and one idle afternoon He’s sitting beside a well in Samaria.

“The Spirit is like the wind,” He says. “You can hear its sound but you can’t tell where it’s come from or where it’s going.”

“One day you won’t worship on this mountain or that one but in spirit and truth.” It’s because Jesus is never busy that He’s always available. You can’t be busy and available at the same time. I’ve taught in a fine Jesuit prep school for over 30 years — working hard, preparing well, loving my students. But ask someone how he or she is doing in one of our Jesuit schools, and the most predictable refrain goes like this...

“Well, I’m really busy, but...” The reason we don’t know how to teach others to “consider the lilies of the field” is because we don’t believe in living that way ourselves. But consider Jesus. No handlers arranging the logistics of tour events. No agenda. No lesson plan. There’s no agenda for a life that’s become like the wind.

So hit the road. Do something that won’t compute. Be available — not only to the needs and joys and suffering of others — but also to the earth itself that has become a leper in our hands. Bow down and kiss the earth as well.

Nunca ocupado
Por: Christopher Lorenc

Observa que poco ocupado está Jesús. Un día está volcando las mesas, expulsando a los cambistas de dinero de la casa de su padre. Después Nicodemo lo visita secretamente por la noche y una tarde de ocio se sienta junto a un pozo de agua, en Samaria.

“El espíritu es como el viento,” nos dice. “Lo puedes oír pero no sabes de dónde viene o hacia dónde va.”

“Un día adorarán al Padre, sin tener que venir a este monte o a otro, y lo harán de un modo verdadero, conforme al espíritu de Dios.” Que Jesús esté siempre disponible, se debe a que Él nunca está ocupado. No se puede estar ocupado y disponible al mismo tiempo. He enseñado en una excelente Escuela Preparatoria Jesuita por más de 30 años — trabajando intensamente, preparándolos bien, sintiendo un cariño muy grande por mis estudiantes. Pero si alguien les preguntara cómo les está yendo en una de estas escuelas Jesuitas, la respuesta indefectible sería…

“Bien, estoy muy ocupada, pero…” La razón por la cual no sabemos enseñar a los otros a “considerar a las flores del campo,” es que nosotros mismos no creemos en vivir de esta manera. Pero considera a Jesús. Nadie organizando la logística de los eventos de la gira. Sin agenda. Sin un plan a seguir. No hay pasos predeterminados para una vida que se asemeja al viento.

Entonces, sal al camino, haz algo sin calcular. Ponte a disposición — no sólo de las necesidades, alegrías y sufrimientos de los demás — sino también de la tierra misma, la cual se ha convertido en un leproso en nuestras manos. Haz una reverencia y besa a la tierra también.

Chris Lorenc is a writer and teacher with a particular focus on the relationship between wilderness, contemplative practice and local culture. He is an oblate and advisory board member of New Camaldoli Hermitage in Big Sur and a member of the Four Winds Council (a cooperative association comprised of New Camaldoli, Esalen Institute, the Esselen Tribe and Tassajara Zen Mountain Center). He lives in upper Rocky Creek in Big Sur, California.


Holy and perfect God,
you know I want to be available.
Help that desire sink deeply enough into my being
for me to actually change
and to say “no” to a least one worthy, but not urgent, task today.
Give me the ability to be open to the life I am leading;
not the one I am planning to lead.
We ask all this in the name of Christ our brother and model.


I am someone I would have never imagined. A secret. A dream. I am this, body and soul. Burn me. Drown me. Tell me lies. I will still be who I am.
: Alice Hoffman

One may understand the cosmos, but never the ego; the self is more distant than any star. Thou shalt love the Lord thy God; but thou shalt not know thyself. We are all under the same mental calamity; we have all forgotten our names. We have all forgotten what we really are. All that we call common sense and rationality and practicality and positivism only means that for certain dead levels of our life we forget that we have forgotten. All that we call spirit and art and ecstasy only means that for one awful instant we remember that we forget.
: G.K. Chesterton

Make voyages. Attempt them. There’s nothing else.
: Tennessee Williams

A journey is a person in itself; no two are alike. And all plans, safeguards, policing, and coercion are fruitless. We find after years of struggle that we do not take a trip; a trip takes us.
: John Steinbeck


Projections in the Forest

Ebben! Ne andro lontana: LAWALLY (Catalani/Callas)

Playlist (Spotify users login, then click)

Questions about the program? Email the coordinator by clicking here.

Click here to download the announcement PDF for "Igniting Our Values."

Since St. Ignatius bought a printing press in 1556, the Jesuits have been involved in communications. Today the Society of Jesus publishes a number of award-winning journals and publications. Click below to access our latest issues.

America 10/14/19

America 9/30/19

America 9/16/19

Loyola Institute for Spirituality
Loyola Institute for Spirituality (LIS), founded in 1997, is located in Orange, CA. LIS provides many programs and services for individuals, parishes, and dioceses throughout Southern California and beyond.