Order. Discipline. Brotherhood. Greatness.

The Pulse and the Ache of God

This week, I have been thinking about the power of a pulse—how it assists the beating heart, moving a constant surge of blood throughout the body. The strong pulse helps to cleanse and oxygenate every portion of the body. A weak pulse, on the other hand, makes the body sluggish, like a stagnant pond, until edema sets in—water overwhelming oxygen—and one’s organs and tissue literally become swamped, suffocated, and no longer able to support life. The strength of one’s pulse, in this passed year of frazzled triage, masks, and so many uncertainties, can sometimes dictate whether one will be treated or left to perish. I’ve been thinking about pulses because every Triduum brings to my memory a particular Tuesday before Holy Week spent in New York City, where I had been asked to speak to a small group. On my way back home, I’d moved through an impossibly crowded Penn…


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