During my time of morning prayer I read the following quotation from Richard Rohr’s Daily Meditation (Sunday, September 22, 2019) emailed through the Center for Action and Contemplation.

In this meditation Fr. Rohr is reflecting on suffering. In the following quotation he observes that our own personal experiences of suffering connect us and unite us with all other human beings because all of us are suffering in some way or another.

Suffering is never easy nor pleasant. As I have reflected before, I am uncomfortable moralizing suffering because to do so seems to cheapen the enormity of the pain one endures when one suffers. However, it does strike me as an important observation that suffering links us with and to others, makes us more compassionate and softer people, and allows us to experience a connection with others…and to God…

“When we carry our small suffering in solidarity with humanity’s one universal longing for deep union, it helps keep us from self-pity or self-preoccupation. We know that we are all in this together. It is just as hard for everybody else, and our healing is bound up in each other’s. Almost all people are carrying a great and secret hurt, even when they don’t know it. This realization softens the space around our overly defended hearts. It makes it hard to be cruel to anyone. It somehow makes us one — in a way that easy comfort and entertainment never can” (Fr. Richard Rohr).