Sr Bridget Mary’s Requiem was held at the Convent on 13 May 2015.
The Intercessions at the Requiem
The quotes are from “The Vision of God” by Nicholas of Cusa, a fifteenth century contemplative writer, who, it is felt, had a profound influence on Sr Bridget Mary’s life and spirit.
‘Thy glance, Lord, is thy face. Those, then, who looketh on thee with loving face will find thy face looking on them with love and the more they shall study to look on thee with greater love, by so much shall they find thy face more loving… Lord, all beauty which can be conceived is less than the beauty of thy face’
We thank and praise you that you gift us with the energy to gaze and to seek to find you in all that surrounds us.
We thank you for Bridget’s capacity to look deeply at your creation and to struggle in her artistry to convey, with a range of forms and material, aspects of your ever changing beauty.
We give thanks for all who expand our spirit and stimulate our loving senses with their artistic vision.
Lord, hear us.
‘I stand before this image of thy face, my God and while I look upon it with my inner eye to behold the truth which is figured forth in this picture, it seemeth to me that thy glance speaketh. For with thee speech and sight are one, since in reality they are not different in thee, who are very Absolute Simplicity’
We thank and praise you for wherever speech and sight coalesce and release fresh insight in us. We thank you for Bridget’s willingness to struggle throughout her vowed life to express with words her perception of truth – however eccentric it may have seemed.
We thank you for wherever we grow in awareness through the abrasiveness of prophetic forewarning – mindful as we are of our created planet and its need for protection.
We praise you that Bridget’s faithfulness to your absolute simplicity brought – we feel – clarity and peace to her heart at the end.
Lord, hear us.
‘I render unto thee thanks unspeakable, O God, light and life of my soul. For now I perceive… how thou, a loving God, dost beget of thyself a loveable God and how the loveable God begotten art the absolute mediator. For ‘tis through thee that all existeth which doth or can exist, since thou, the loving or willing God, enfoldest them all in thee, the loveable God’
We give you great thanks that you mediated through Bridget much loveableness that enabled her to surprise us with her openness and vulnerability and empathy in relating.
We thank you for her friends & relatives – especially those able to be here now, affirming her spirit.
We praise you that in spite of – or perhaps in part because of – her sufferings, from the constraints of institutional living, from the shocks of physical seizures and latterly from much bodily pain, an immense generosity of heart and mind emerged in her last years, especially towards us her Sisters.
We thank you because we have surely been moved and humbled to see your Spirit radiant in her words and, when she had no more words, through her smile.
Lord, hear us.
‘Lord, thy glance is love and just as thy gaze beholdeth me so attentively that it never turneth aside from me, even so is it with love, since ‘tis deathless it abideth ever with me and thy love, Lord, is naught else but thy very self who lovest me. Hence thou art ever with me Lord; thou desertest me not; on all sides thou guardest me, for that thou takest most diligent care for me. Thy being lettest not go of my being’
We praise you that you have been drawing Bridget into yourself during her life through people who inspired and upheld her.
We give thanks for those Bridget deeply respected and for something of their spirit and presence that she absorbed within her. We remember these her companions and their gifts:
- The wide-hearted realism of Sister Barbara Charis, one of our former Revd Mothers;
- Julian of Norwich with her vision and understanding of Jesus’ fusion of sorrow and joy;
- Anthony Bloom’s Russian Orthodox disciplined prayerfulness and flexibility;
- The wisdom of Sri Ramana Maharshi, Hindu sage, who taught much through silence;
- The quiet listening of John Austen, Bishop and former Warden of CSMV;
- The Quaker meeting gathering at Burford;
- and the sense of loving support and friendship that Robert – presiding for us this morning – conveyed to Bridget in her last years.
We praise and bless you especially for the departed souls who enriched Bridget’s life.
For all the ways you invite and challenge and nudge us into wanting to be united with you, we open our hearts to you and we rejoice that you have our dear creative friend, Bridget, set free from our world’s conflicts and dancing anew in your Holy Spirit.
Let us bless the Lord.
Thanks be to God.