11 November 2011

A Sacred Bird

A couple years ago our community underwent a huge redesign for Word Made Flesh. As was our weekly habit all the office staff came together on a Tuesday morning to reflect on our new logo; candles lit at the altar; the cross of the San Damiano hanging above; incense burning opposite the Christ. Our new logo—a spray-painted representation of a bird sat before us. Over the course of several months during that year, the staff at Oxide Design Company http://oxidedesign.com/ listened to our collective story of WMF—and this image emerged.

A couple members led us into reflection through music, scripture, poetry and stories of the seraph and the phoenix. It wasn’t long before several people were inspired and profound thoughts surfaced. I sat in wonder. Who knew that a bird with six wing-tips or nine feathers (depending how you look at it) could render such deep meaning?

A bird—small, seemingly insignificant
A bird—the offering of the poor, Jesus’ family offering
A bird—symbol of promise, symbol of the Holy Spirit
A bird—one who is closest to God in the form of a Seraph

As thoughts formed dreams and dreams turned to prayer it grew apparent that this image, this bird is like an icon—a sacred work of art with layers of meaning. A spirit of humility and awe came over me. Clearly, this icon’s representation and symbolism is something for us to live into. As time unfolds, layer after layer of sacred meaning will reveal ever deepening truth and inspiration.

We are a community, united in a collective call to serve Jesus among the most vulnerable of the world’s poor; the vulnerable ones, like birds, who point us to the heavens and to the Creator of the heavens—to the One who call us “My Beloved.”

Reflecting on this icon allows each of us to find more truth in who we are individually and collectively. Reflecting on our sacred bird allows us to grow into all that God has called us to be and do. May we receive the grace to unfurl our wings and fly.