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Igantian Spiritual Exercises in Everyday Life, Part 26

Apr. 1, 2016 - The retreatants are now praying the fourth “Week”, or major phase, of the Spiritual Exercises. Currently, they are praying with the resurrection of Jesus Christ.

In this prayer, we do not contemplate the actual resurrection event, which is a mystery beyond time and space. Rather we pray with God’s transformation of life, making all things new, as in a new creation. Resurrection is a conquering of sin and death, once and for all.

The grace we pray for is that of Easter joy – to share in the joy and peace of the risen Christ. This joy, like any grace we pray for, is a gift from God, and we do not earn it and cannot force it. We simply try to be open to it by contemplating Christ as he shares the joy of the Resurrection with others.

The following contemplation is not found in Scripture but comes from Ignatius’ own imagination. Given the central role that Mary played in Jesus’ life, Ignatius thinks it only reasonable that the first person to whom Christ appeared was his mother. So imagine the risen Christ appearing to Mary. Imagine the details of the room where they meet. Imagine how each is so excited and joy filled upon their reunion. Imagine the words and embraces they exchange. See how Christ consoles her.

- Adapted from “The Ignatian Adventure” by Kevin O’Brien, SJ (Loyola Press)