44th Anniversary of Thomas Merton’s Death

merton“[Merton] had died sometime before 3 p.m. Bangkok time. A telegram was sent that night to [the Abbey of] Gethsemani. Crossing the International Date Line, it arrived some fourteen hours after his death, at 10 a.m. on December 10, at the monastery. The tenth of December, 1968, was, to the day, the twenty-seventh anniversary of Thomas Merton’s arrival at the Monastery of Our Lady of Gethsemani” – Michael Mott, The Seven Mountains of Thomas Merton.

On the morning of the day that Thomas Merton died in Bangkok, Merton delivered the talk “Marxism and Monastic Perspectives.” The last thing he said publicly that day was in conclusion: “I will conclude on that note. I believe the plan is to have all the questions for this morning’s lectures this evening at the panel. So I will disappear.” And disappear he did. We never know when such throw-away phrases will come to bear retrospective clairvoyant status.

We remember a Trappist monk, an amazing writer, a dedicated proponent of peace and nonviolence, a leader in interreligious dialogue, a committed fighter for social justice, a prophet, and someone who continues to influence the world for better. While not yet canonized, he is — as are all the baptized — a member of the communion of saints. May he intercede for us as his work and life continue to inspire others for years to come.

Thomas Merton, ora pro nobis!

Photo: Thomas Merton Center

2 Responses to “44th Anniversary of Thomas Merton’s Death”

  1. His work continues to inspire millions of people. I read and reread many of his book. I am enriched by his living among us.

  2. Jeff Sharp Says:

    As a Protestant Evangelical I discovered Thomas Merton in the seventies and he has been one of my constant pilgrim companions since then.I am grateful for his life and writings. “Blessed are those who die in the Lord. …Blessed indeed, …, for their deeds follow them!” Revelation 14:13

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s


Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 993 other followers

%d bloggers like this: