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Mending the Breach
Mending the Breach

Mending the Breach: Weekly Summary

Saturday, October 21, 2023

Polarities, dualisms, and seeming opposites are not opposites at all but part of a hidden and rejected wholeness. The task of true religion is to rebind (in Latin, re-ligio) that which is torn apart by temperament, ignorance, and institutionalized evil. —Richard Rohr

Mature Christianity is perhaps when the inside meets the outside and the bottom is allowed to teach the top. Sounds like pure gospel to me. —Richard Rohr

While they carried a great burden about gaps of injustice, Desmond Tutu and Nelson Mandela radiated conviction and not condemnation, redemption and not final judgment, embrace and not rejection. The truly prophetic nature of their work in South Africa was pursuing justice with a quality of mercy that shaped a quest for communion with enemies and strangers. —Emmanuel Katongole and Chris Rice

God instead wants all people to prosper—for no one to have too much while others have too little. God demands justice, not charity or sacrifice. God longs for the righting of wrongs, the repairing of breaches. —Liz Theoharis

People of real faith seem able to hold increasing amounts of chaos in one tranquil and ordered life. Because people of faith are comfortable with the totality, they’re able to hold disparate parts together, make the peace, or “mend the breach.” —Richard Rohr

We humans were made to be together, and that’s by God’s design. Human flourishing requires that we establish, mend, and maintain relationships with other people. —Leroy Barber

Mindfulness of Love

Buddhist practitioners Peggy Rowe Ward and Larry Ward invite us to engage the breaches of the world with the “mindfulness of love”:

The mindfulness tradition calls us home to our true hearts and minds, to the realization of our true identity and our connectedness to all of life with history in the present moment and to recognize how our thinking, speech, and action can affect our time and generations to come….

Mindfulness of love asks us to acknowledge not only our fractured lives but our broken societies as well. This acknowledgement is done with the humility and power of compassion….

We invite you to scan your nation, our planet, and the natural world and ask where is there suffering, especially innocent suffering, that you might respond to with love? What dreams do you have of what your society and our world may become? How might you contribute to the birth of a new social contract? How are your daily choices and lifestyle making a difference for love?

Consider your work environment. This may be a home office or a factory, the entertainment business, the medical world, teaching, law enforcement, to name a few. History is witness to the power of the mind of love in action in all of these places and more. Mother Teresa has said that the task is not to do big things but to “do small things with great love.” The qualities of generosity, inclusiveness, persistence, spirituality, ethical commitment and wisdom have stood the test of time.

Many of us find ourselves too busy to fully embody and cultivate these transformational aspects of loving action. We encourage you to check in with yourself and your partner [or a friend or spiritual director] and discuss ways that you might act out these qualities in yourselves. The mind of love calls us still, if even in a whisper, regardless of our inner or outer circumstances, to be entangled in the stuff of this precious world. It calls us to be, know, and do our very best to touch and be touched by the great garden of love that is our birthright and the birthright of all beings.


Peggy Rowe Ward and Larry Ward, Love’s Garden: A Guide to Mindful Relationships (Berkeley, CA: Parallax Press, 2008), 159–160.

Image credit: A path from one week to the next—Alma Thomas, Snoopy—Early Sun Display on Earth (detail), 1970, acrylic on canvas, Smithsonian. Alma Thomas, Snow Reflection on Pond (detail), 1973, acrylic on canvas, Smithsonian. Loïs Mailou Jones, Jeune Fille Français (detail), 1951, oil on canvas, Smithsonian. Click here to enlarge image.

We accept the breach as an invitation to repair: piece by piece, thread by thread, we heal together.

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