February 2015

An invitation from creation

Good Samaritan Sister Liz Wiemers reflects on the new cosmology through a series of photographs she captured during a recent sabbatical in Ireland and Germany.


After 13.7 billion years of creation history where are we? Where do I fit after the 4.6 billion years of earth’s history? We are only beginning to comprehend the extensive story of our universe. At the same time we are trying to grasp the fragility of our planet and the rapid decline of species and habitats.

It is good to be able to share some of my reflections on the new cosmology or new universe story. It is good to be able to share these with a small selection of images from my recent sabbatical at Galway and An Tairseach Ecology Centre, Wicklow.

In her book Seeing with the Eyes of the Heart, Christine Valters Paintner speaks of photography as “the active art of image receiving with the contemplative nature and open-heartedness of prayer”. She goes on to distinguish between ‘taking photos’ and ‘receiving images’, and speaks of “sacred seeing” which enables us to see beneath surface appearances, the art of beholding.

For me that is one of the wonders of photography and the aspect that fills me with delight and wonder – to be able to recognise a moment, an attraction to the presence of another, and, with my gaze and attention to that moment, seeing the ever-changing face of God… seeing with the eyes of our hearts.

The images in my photo essay come from moments of contemplative wandering and reflecting on the new cosmology as it was presented to us at An Tairseach, and I share them with you in that spirit.

Click on an image to view the photo essay.

Elizabeth Wiemers

Since 2009, Good Samaritan Sister Elizabeth Wiemers has lived and ministered at Santa Teresa (Ltyentye Apurte), a remote Aboriginal Catholic community about 80 kilometres south-west of Alice Springs, and home to over 600 people. Last year she enjoyed a sabbatical which included experiences in Ireland and Germany.

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