Saturday, January 2, 2010

What is a Friend?

Dear Friends,

Preparing for a retreat later this year on the subject of spiritual friendship, I am interested in hearing how others define it. Perhaps you have some insight to share that will be helpful as I explore this issue with retreatants.

If you like, please post a comment on this blog to the question:

What is a friend?

My ability to respond to provided comments is limited, but please know of my gratitude in advance.

Br. Francis

P.S. If it is helpful, below is the description of the retreat I will be giving late next summer:

Friendship with God:
God is Father Almighty, Creator of heaven and earth, but is He also a friend?
Does God call human beings to friendship with Him? If so, why and how? This retreat will briefly explore these challenging questions. We will look at the nature of true friendship, listen to what Scripture and the tradition of the Church say about how it applies to our relationship with God, and discuss common objections. Moreover, we will discover what friendship with God means for our life of prayer, and how it bears fruit. Our focus for meditation will be what Jesus tells His disciples and all Christians in John 15: “I have called you friends.”


ErnestO said...

Lavater says, "The qualities of your friends will be those of your enemies; cold friends, cold enemies, half friends, half enemies, fervid enemies, warm friends."

Marioninkentucky said...

To have a friend you must be a friend, according to my husband. To be a friend, you need to share the other's values/loves/interests. You must enjoy being with them. You need to seek them out. You need to practice kindness and respect so that they will want to be with you as well. You have to make time for a friend. You need to be honest with them for their sake. You need to seek their best. It is easier to think of God as Father, Creator, Redeemer, Judge than it is to think of Him as friend; He is holy, righteous -- we are not. I don't use the term "friend" in my speech about feels uncomfortable. It feels presumptuous. I am looking forward to the retreat!