This morning, after the part of my dream where I bought an old t.v. from a thrift store and they delivered eight because they wanted to get rid of their stock and they all had different hookups and some were bizarrely shaped, there was kind of a nice little story, which I have made slightly more coherent for the blog:
There’s this elderly nun who has some kind of religious relic that’s supposed to have great power—but it’s not really the relic itself, because she offered to put it on display instead of having it with her all the time—so other people could come and revere it—but no one wanted that, because what makes the object so special has to do with the nun’s personal holiness.
One day she doesn’t show up for some chapel worship service, and all the people who normally found it such a profound and holy experience worshipping with the revered sister and her relic are all bored and irritated having to sit through Sister Margaret doing 12 novenas.
Afterward, the monks are talking amongst themselves and one says, “It couldn’t be clearer; Sister is trying to teach by example that religious works are of no value to God.” Another says, “That’s not it at all; religious works are of value if they lead to greater love for God. Maybe Sister is intentionally acting in an unsaintly manner so that we will not idolize her.” And another said, “Or she’s trying to teach us that the holiness she represents to us is always present, even if she herself is not.”
Sister was getting up in years and had dozed off and slept through the service.