Fulfilment – Theological


Teresa Forcades


Song 6:3 I am my beloved’s, and my beloved is mine: he feedeth among the lilies.

Gertrud of Helfta, The Herald of Divine Love. Book II, chapter XX §14-15 (13th century)

Introductory remarks:

Reflecting on my mind one day about your gifts to me, and comparing my hardness to your tenderness that I so superabundantly enjoy, I dared to reproach you that your gifts to me had not been confirmed with a shake of hands as it is customary with contracts, and your loving softness promised to satisfy this objection saying: ‘Let your reproaches cease, come and receive the confirmation of my commitment’. Then, in my littleness, I saw you opening with both hands that arch of divine fidelity and ineffable truth that is your divinized heart, and you asked me (…) that I place my right hand in the opening of your heart and, closing it then with my hand included, you said: ‘Hereby I promise to keep the gifts I gave to you, so that if temporarily, I retire their effects, I oblige myself to repay all later with a benefit three times greater in the omnipotence, wisdom and benignity of the glorious Trinity, within which I live and reign, true God for ever and ever’. After these words came from your most sweet tenderness, I took my hand out and there appeared seven circles of gold as if they were seven rings, one for each finger and three in the ring-finger, a faithful witness to the fact that the gifts had been confirmed according to my desire.