St. Procopius of Gaza (yes, that Gaza, a thriving Christian center when that saint wrote) says that Christ has “as his dwelling-place, the whole world in which he lives by his activity.” It’s not one place, or one time where he dwells, but the whole world and all time. He dwells in Gaza too.
We are all made in his image “which is partly seen and partly hidden from our eyes.” We’re called to grow in Christ’s image, the saint says, by the gifts we have been given through his Spirit. No place should be without human flourishing.
Its not a spiritual growth alone we’re called to achieve, but our growth comes from discovering God’s will as it is “revealed in the laws by which the entire creation is governed.”
So, St. Procopius, intercede for your land of Gaza today, so bereft of basic things like food, shelter, schools, access to the world beyond. Help your people, made in God’s image, to grow according to God’s will. Help them have what’s due to them according to their human rights.
Saint Procopious of Gaza. He’s the saint who offers a beautiful reflection on wisdom in the Office of Readings today. But from Gaza, that poor broken place of violence today? He wrote long ago when Gaza was a thriving Christian center, of course. But still, as we see in broken places like Egypt and Iran, wisdom still builds a house, even in the midst of destruction. As we listen to his words, can we hope for renewal in Gaza and Egypt, and also in our own land?
“Wisdom has built herself a house. God the Father’s Power, himself a person, has fashioned as his dwelling-place the whole world, in which he lives by his activity; and has fashioned humanity, created to resemble God’s own image and likeness and with a nature which is partly seen and partly hidden from our eyes.
“And she has set up seven pillars. For humanity, which was made in the image of Christ when the rest of creation was completed, Wisdom gave the seven gifts of the Spirit to enable us to believe in Christ and to keep his commandments. By means of these gifts, strength is stimulated by knowledge and knowledge is reflected in strength until the spiritual person is brought to completion, solidly founded on firm faith and on the supernatural graces in which he shares.
“Our nature is made more glorious by strength, by good counsel, and by prudence. Strength brings a desire to seek out all manifestations of the divine will through which all things were made. Good counsel distinguishes what is God’s will from what is not and leads us to ponder, to proclaim and to fulfil the will of God. Prudence, finally, leads us to turn towards the will of God and not to other things.”
God’s Wisdom is at work everywhere, even in Gaza.