Climbing Stairways. October 7, 2016

There stood in front of me a seemingly endless stairway with each step inching its way to heaven. And this  was a steep incline that I had to work my way up, ever so gradually wishing it would be transformed into a mystical, moving excalator. But no, I had to navigate,  one step at a time, the 25 pounds on my back reminding me, “Take it slowly.” And that I did. 

Life presents itself with a series of emotional and psychological stairways, steps we must climb in  patient perseverance. Yes, we want to make it to the top of resolution quickly, but rarely is this possible. I met a beautiful woman and her daughter walking the ladder of the Camino, step by step. This woman was diagnosed with an auto immune disease that combined symptoms relating to MS and ALS. She has to endure treatments, one step at a time and the medical incline must seem interminable. The doctor gave the green light to her dream of the Camino if only for a week. Her daughter was her human angel transformed,  in one breath, into a human walking stick. Both journeyed, step by step with the daughter telling mom at just the right moment,  “Time to stop and rest.” Mom graciously obliged. I met them on a step of rest on a stairway leading into heaven. 

As I look down my stairway in memory, I see this mom and daughter, imagining how many steps of treatments, doctor consultations, medications and procedures they must climb, step by step. The emotional incline must be steep indeed, making my physical mountain stairway trivial. Yes, life is a series of these of these stairways that lead us to a summit..a which the vista of life gets larger and more beautiful, even in the tears. As we continue the journey, a new stairway presents itself with new steps and new challenges. 

And at the top of each stairway the vision gets larger and more majestic, allowing the spirit to soar…please don’t flee the steep stairways out of fear…climb slowly, step by step, knowing Christ walks next to you, helping you to carry the burden of suffering. He, himself, climbed the steepest stairwell of all: the mount of Calvary being nailed to a Cross. “Come to me all who are weary and find life burdensome and I will refresh you.”  

Buen camino. Fr. Frank

3 thoughts on “Climbing Stairways. October 7, 2016

  1. Anonymous says:

    Fr. Frank, this is such a beautiful and (always) relevant observation. I am happy for you that you had such a special couple join you at your moment of need. Mark VG.


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