Each and every one of us has been uniquely and creatively gifted to be a vessel through which LOVE is made manifest in our world. In service to this unique giftedness, we have also been blessed with a certain kind of magic which allows these gifts to be used in service to the betterment of the world and in ways that are no less than miraculous. In the Catholic tradition in which I was raised, this magic is referred to as charisms, known in other traditions as spiritual gifts or in the yogic tradition as siddhis. This is part 3 of an ongoing exploration. Read Part 2 HERE, and Part 1 HERE. Today we will explore the charisms of faith, giving and healing.
St. Paul said, “Faith is the realization of things hoped for and evidence of things unseen.” (Hebrews 11:1) Faith as a spiritual gift is possessed by those who have an unusual ability to trust in the love, power and goodness of God and who as a result of this level of trust, experience a remarkable proportion of inner freedom to act on this trust. Faith in this form allows us to BELIEVE that God is working for our highest good in all things and to act on this believe, often without physical proof or anything else, for that matter, on which to base this belief – except our belief in God. The proof of this faith arises in the accomplishments of these faith-filled people who are somehow able to accomplish big visions with no visible means of support because they have believed that God would provide – and miraculously, God does.
When I think of the charism of giving, I am drawn to the life of Mary Jo Copeland. I attended elementary and middle school with Mary Jo’s children and were mutual parishioners at St. Alphonsus Catholic Church in Brooklyn Center, MN. Mary Jo is the founder of Sharing and Caring Hands in downtown Minneapolis which serves the needs of the urban poor. Mary Jo is the perfect example of the charism of giving. Mary Jo’s exceptional generosity to the community and to the people she serves is demonstrated not only in the services provided through her ministry but is perhaps best exemplified by the tender care she offers to those she ministers to through loving touch. The charism of giving is known by the heartfelt desire to give of ones resources in support of others, typically in enormously generous ways.
As a Reiki Master Practitioner, I have often wondered if the charism of healing is one of my gifts. Humbly, I must admit that it is not. Yes, I provide a healing ministry, but the charism of healing goes beyond the work that I have seen accomplished in the hands-on-healing sessions I have facilitated. Yes, there have been a few instances of miraculous results, but one who possesses the charism of healing witnesses results far greater than mine. Specifically – the charism of healing is known by a curing of illness and a restoration of health where healing was unlikely to occur quickly or to happen at all. It is this remarkable and miraculous healing that distinguishes the charism of healing from other charisms which may support the healing process such as encouragement, hospitality or mercy.