Monday, June 11, 2012

Speak softly and carry a little mustard seed

I'm a great fan of the mustard-seed theology of our Holy Father. So it's a joy to see my new book My Peace I Give You: Healing Sexual Wounds with the Help of the Saints cited by Father Phil Bloom in his homily for next Sunday as a work that will help people appreciate the parable of the mustard seed in that day's Gospel reading. (That's Father Bloom at right with me and Mark Shea during my May 2008 Seattle trip.)

Father Bloom writes:

The first book that will help appreciate the mustard seed is My Peace I Give You: Healing Sexual Wounds with the Help of the Saints. In it, Dawn Eden courageously reveals her own traumatic childhood experiences. She tells how those experiences led to fear, anger and destructive behavior.

How does a person overcome that negativity? Dawn had the benefit of therapy, but she discovered something more. As she embraced Christ in his fullness, she learned that some saints had experiences similar to hers. By God's grace, they were able to change evil into good, hatred into love, revenge into forgiveness." The transformation begins with something small - a "foothold of goodness."

Dawn uses the example of St. Josephine Bakhita. Kidnapped and sold into slavery, Bakhita experienced abuse that few people could imagine. She eventually wound up in a non-religious Italian family. One day a man named Illuminato Cecchini presented her with a small crucifix. Before entrusting it to Bakhita, he kissed it with devotion. The young woman did not know who Jesus is, but the crucifix had a "mysterious force" on her. Bakhita gradually realized that she could take her own scars to [the] Man depicted on the cross. That "foothold of goodness" led to an amazing transformation.

My Peace I Give You Dawn tells how St. Bakhita -and other saints - helped her find healing for her own wounds. They show how things small - like a mustard seed - can bring results beyond imagining.