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Dismas of Solesmes

Source: Luke 23:43


Redemption, that's what it's called: a love I've looked for so long.

You know me, right? You know I'm not the general in this army. You know that in this combat my body will be incised with the marks of my enemies' intentions. You know as well as I do that we're going to lose this war we're waging against you. Because it is your Father's pleasure that we lose it.

I saw your angels coming, a multitude of them, from every corner of heaven and earth. Here is where the darkness will end. I know how they do battle. I recognized some of them. They're so beautiful; how could I forget them?
In the forefront is the one whose spirit wields only that one's name, but whose speaking shakes the very foundations of the universe. And still others, whose disturbing attention has followed me all my life.

They're up close now: as their strength bears on the bubble of the world, I can distinguish their wings, the strange glinting of your massive armada. What can we do, we who are nothing more than pools of darkness, against your light?

I look at you, Jesus of Nazareth.
I know who you are.

In you there is no shadow of compromise.

Your enemies gave you a beating; my enemies beat me, too, when I fell into their hands. I joined their army to put a stop to that; you joined the light. I chose not to die; you chose to die, to maintain your innocence. I see your injuries; they inflicted the same ones on me. I refused them; you accepted them. So I entered into war, and you remained in peace.

My friends — those dogs drunk on the taste of blood — have disappeared. I didn't see them go. I'm alone against all of you. I think that's what your presence does: when a person faces you, the universe drops to its knees.

I look at you, Jesus of Nazareth.
I know who you are.

You are pure, glowing essence.

Before I surrender to your grace, I'm going to give you the most precious thing I have.
It's a gift for you, the one most deeply betrayed of all of us,
you who were brought down by the very ones saved by your sacrifice.

I didn't betray you; I fought you. Because down here it's easier to survive by means of evil than through you. Yours is the way of courage, the way of choice. And the reward of my dying is having you as a friend.

So take my soul, Son of God, and bring this durable diamond chip to your Father. Tell him that my only treasure is his, that its shining consoled me. And remember me, not as an enemy, but as a life that cherished hard a fragment of your grace.

I see the sky opening now. Your cascade of angels is swooping down on the world, unstoppable, inevitable. Too strong, too many; so beautiful I want to be conquered.

My shadow is dying. Already my spirit is incised by light. I will disappear.

You know me, Jesus of Nazareth.
You know who I am.

All I am is love.