In these days fall gradually starts to arrive. Plants are wilting, leaves are dying. Soon the days will be colder and darker.
And yet, outside my front door the Mexican sunflowers are still blooming. Their flowerheads are an intense orange, and until a few days ago the Monarch butterflies were still flocking around them, drinking the nectar.
Seeing them flock so happily around the flowers – with fall coming, their wings beautiful and bright garments – reminds me of the parable of the marriage feast (Matthew 22) that is read at Michaelmas.
The resurrected caterpillar, the butterfly, clad in its festive garment takes flight, feasting on the last fall flowers until going on its flight south – toward sun and warmth, but also toward its future.
Just as the butterfly we may choose to put on the festive garment of our most noble feelings and intentions and go to the marriage feast, the place where heaven and earth, light and darkness, spirit and matter come together in a kind of bountiful harvest of everything that has grown good and ripe and full in earth’s evolution.
And although at this time of year the outside world grows colder and darker, we may then feel on the inside the light shining brightly – as if on sunflowers and butterfly wings. Then the Michaelmas light shines in us – from him who is the countenance of Christ.
Rev. Inken Contreras