A dear sister in Christ, a nun in a Greek monastery, recommended Mother Gavrilia’s book to me a month ago, to study again, and draw inspiration and courage and faith in my poor, little missionary endeavours, by that Missionary and Unmercenary Giant. I am so grateful for this Holy Mother and her book. I have had it for many years and read it many times. Each time it goes deeper, deeper. I am reading this again after many years of traveling and the book was packed away. She always, through the message of the Holy Spirit-alive in her, has a word or two about my/your struggles. Especially now. I feel her so close to my side. Mother Gavrilia is such a role model in her fearlessness, her humility and obedience to God’s Will, her dedication to the service of all mankind, her Faith! May we have her blessing!
A poem in the book touched my heart so deeply:
THOU HAST made me known to friends
whom I knew not.
Thou hast given me seats in homes not my own.
Thou hast brought the distant near
and made a brother of the stranger.
I am uneasy at heart
when I have to leave my accustomed shelter;
I forget that there abides the old in the new,
and that there also thou abidest.
Through birth and death,
in this world or in others,
wherever thou leadest me, it is thou the same,
the one companion of my endless life,
who ever linkest my heart
with bonds of joy to the unfamiliar.
When one knows thee,
then alien there is none,
then no door is shut.
Oh, grant me my prayer
that I may never lose the bliss
of the touch of the one
in the play of the many.
[R. Tagore, Gitanjali, LXIII]
This poem, dated March 24, 1964, exactly ten years after she was “reborn”, was found among her papers. On the top of that page, she made the sign of the Cross
Arvo Pärt – And then came the evening and the morning (1990)
“God is Love” … and Mother Gavrilia‘s entire life, which was a hymn to the Lord, became thanks to Him, a burnt offering, a holocaust to His Love.
“Only one thing do I know that I have always, and it is not pride, nor fantasy, but that which I have day and night, wherever I find myself–three things: first, Faith; second, Faith; third, Faith. That’s all! Nothing else can I say to you. It has directed all my life.”