Archive for January 2nd, 2023

The Importance of Hope

Written by Michael Downey, a contemporary author. This is an excerpt from the book “Weavings.”


What I have come to see is that there is nothing more important to human beings than hope. Certainly, in our own day, many people live without explicit religious faith. And evidence of loveless lives is tragically abundant. But people usually do not survive long without hope. They cannot, because hope is the very heart of a human being…We live in a profoundly disruptive and disorienting age. On every street, behind every door, lives someone who is deeply disheartened, if not actually despairing. This may be brought on by the awareness of massive and meaningless death, the randomness of violence, the onset of early illness, the loss of a loved one or job or sense of meaning and value. Or by the loss of cherished and heretofore reliable ways of thinking and speaking of God. Indeed, even by the loss of faith in God. But this loss too can beckon us to deeper levels of openness to hope, the kind of hope that is absolutely and altogether gift…. Hope is not the same thing as optimism that things will go our way or turn out well. It is rather the certainty that something makes sense, is worth the cost, regardless of how it might turn out. Hope is a sense of what might yet be. It strains ahead, seeking a way behind and beyond every obstacle.


Today’s prayer is from the Sarem Primer, a book of prayers and Christian worship resources from the 1500s, collected at the Salisbury cathedral.

O glorious and almighty God,

all the spirits of the blessed

place their hope in you.

Grant us that, by your help,

we may always serve you with a pure mind; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

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