Tercets For Francis Xavier

And we must also strengthen ourselves with the saying of the Lord that says: “He that loves his life in this world will lose it, and he who loses it for the sake of God will find it,” which is in keeping with what Christ our Lord also says: “He who puts his hand to the plough and looks back is not fit for the kingdom of God.”
(From a letter by Francis Xavier)

Do not be fooled: the seas may still be rough,
The locals may not welcome you, arms wide.
Your faith must be made of much sterner stuff.

You walk the path with many who have died,
The ones who, hand put to the plough, walked straight
Ahead, no looking back on wounded pride,

The ones who set their course on through the gates
Of oceans’ unfamiliar territories,
On to Celebes, through Malacca’s straits,

Their joy found in surrender on these seas.

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