Close this search box.

Apostolic Movement

Abundance of Challenges: A Spiritual Perspective


He invited each member of the audience to reflect on their personal challenges at this time. It is important to ask what horizons are currently opening up in one’s personal life. It remains a “prophetic challenge” not to lose sight of what is on the horizon. His friend, violin maker Martin Schleske, spoke of a “time of sacred uncertainty” with regard to the present day. “Times of crisis can become a healing disturbance,” Falk said. It is about “discovering what is ours in the crisis.” Times of crisis, the speaker said, are times when people are “disrupted” in order to learn to fly and discover something new.” “We do not have the solution, especially not the perfect solution, but we are challenged to look for solutions, and temporary solutions are solutions as well.” In such a context, Father Kentenich had asked a class of priests to experiment in 1967.

Stepping on the crack

This year’s Lenten loom in his parish, a large white cloth with a crack backed by a red cloth, deftly casts a luminous glimmer on the present times: “Cracks everywhere.” Gerhard Pross of the “Together for Europe” network said by way of invitation, “It’s time to step into the crack!”. Father Peter Falk is reminded of Father Kentenich, who went into the cracks of souls and discovered what was hidden. “There is something new awaiting for us in the crack. Cracks are new spaces of learning. Cracks are sacred places,” stated Falk.

Abundance of challenges
A reproduction of the painting “Mary of the Loom” and a real loom decorate the stage area of the Father Kentenich House (Photo: Brehm)

Three exemplary moments, which he interprets as an intercession from heaven, have become places of learning for him, he said:

The loom

First, the painting “Mary at the Loom,” which is in Spello, a small town in Umbria near Assisi, on the wall of an ancient weaving mill. Mary is weaving. The weaving shows tangled threads on the reverse and harmony on the foreground. It is important to apply it to one’s own life: “Do I not already find a wonderful harmony behind the tangled threads of my life story? It is necessary to discover the new fabric that Mary is weaving and each one of us is called to discover the threads – and not only the golden ones – of our own life with which Our Lady is weaving new motifs.

String, key, tack

As a second learning spot, Peter Falk spoke of a safety exercise with a pendulum. He said he had learned from a Swiss Schoenstatt Father how to make a pendulum in a simple way: with a string, a key tied at the bottom and attached to the ceiling with a tack. As long as you are convinced that the tack will hold, you can imagine yourself swinging back and forth happily and confidently in place of the key. “But if you get scared, if you become insecure and wonder: will the tack at the top really hold?”. For safety’s sake one will move less and less until finally stopping. “Whoever gives up freedom for security will eventually lose both,” Father Falk is convinced.

The impact of a keyword

The third example is that of Syrian Catholic priest Jaques Mourad, whom he met in Syria in 2005 and who was kidnapped by IS jihadists in 2015 and held for five months. “What gave you the strength and energy to endure being held hostage?” he asked Jaques Mourad during a visit to Benno College in Dresden in October 2022. Mourad told him that he had asked “Why am I here?” and the IS leader reportedly replied: “Consider this time as a spiritual retreat!”. This statement changed his spiritual life. From then on, he discovered his charisma, his realm: “I don’t want to carry weapons and I will treat everyone with a lot of love”. At the end of the 5 months of kidnapping, he asked: “Why didn’t they behead me?”. The Answer: “Because you did not carry weapons and you treated us with love”. According to Peter Falk, Jaques Mourad discovered during his captivity the reason why he wanted to live. “We cannot live always against something, each one of us needs something to live for.

Peter Falk: “Schoenstatt is a perspective, not a retrospective” (Photo: Brehm)

Schoenstatt, a perspective, not a retrospective

For him, said the Schoenstatt priest from Freiburg, these three examples were three moments that had presented themselves on the horizon. He recalls the words of Andrea Ricardi, of the “Sant’Egidio” community founded in Italy. “Christianity is a perspective, not a retrospective”. This is also valid for Schoenstatt: “Schoenstatt is a perspective, not a retrospective”. And he concluded with a quote from St. Claire, who often invited a brother of Francis to her bedside and asked, “What’s new with Jesus?” Falk invited those present to wonder more often, “What is new with Jesus in your lives, in your community and beyond, and also what about the Mother of the Loom?”

Source: Schö


with your loved ones

Related articles that may interest you