Tuesday, October 31, 2006
I was not able to post after my retreat because work was so crazy. We had a big event on Saturday, which went amazingly well. I'm a big fan of Archbishop Wuerl so far... good thing, since he's an Apostle and all (hello, earth)
The greatest thing about the Trappists: They are not in a hurry. For anything. I stepped into a whole different concept of time and I loved it; It's so much more human than the pace of life in the city. The ancient monk who was the retreat master and available to the 12 of us, almost all perfect strangers, just really impressed me with how peaceful he was and how his parting words were not to rush anything. It was totally the attitude I need about all these things bouncing around in my head. Relax. Since when were you ever in control? The Holy Spirit knows what He is doing. As I told our Sister Flowers, who is waiting to become a Poor Clare, she might have to save me a room next door :)
The HS also made sure to keep humility the lesson of the weekend. Nothing like finding yourself in a cloister of a monastery where a woman is most certainly NOT SUPPOSED TO BE at 5:30 in the morning for making you really embarrassed and praying "Please let me find my way out or send someone to find me!"
One other quick note I mentioned to Sr. Wave. The darkness of the country is altogether different from that of the city. You can feel the immenseness of the world and your own littleness... you can actually see the stars and not 10 feet in front of you. No wonder people in the city can avoid wondering about the Infinite; they have lost such an obvious manifestation of it thanks to bright lights and pollution. I'm so thankful to have had beautiful clear nights there.
And did I mention that the cows were AWESOME? They made me smile all day with their incessant moo-ing.
I guess my only critique of the first little snippet they offer on the website is that the home he goes to is HUGE. Yeah, this goes back to the poverty thing... I think it would be maybe a more powerful witness if he could go into a modest home, and perhaps even work with only what they have in the house (i.e. what anyone could afford)
In fact, I know quite a few modest homes of ladies in the area who could use a free cooking lesson... maybe the Hyatt??? :)
Thursday, October 19, 2006
Prov-i-dence, y'all. Tomorrow I shall drive down this beautiful road and find myself in a Trappist monastery for the weekend. This is the place Sr. Morning disappeared to one weekend and came back quite content. I can't wait! There were some cancellations; otherwise there isn't another free weekend until the end of November.
Wednesday, October 18, 2006
I think of that now because of a few friends who are going through very hard times. The Lord in His wisdom ensures that we don't all hit that low point at once, because we can carry one another only if one of us can walk. (Ok, He'll carry us no matter what, I'm just sayin.) I'm thankful to be on the "good end" of this deal at the moment, but I promise that although I'm wretched, I will take seriously the responsibility of prayer for all of those intentions.
I wrote something to Sr. Wind once that is applicable:
I love you all so much, I know that God must exist. That all this is Reality.
I'm sure some of you are way ahead of me and see an answer, which until I was quickly reading through a paper (Ryan's, from his site) did not come to me. Christ, as the new Adam, has already conquered the devil. Since Mary receives the grace of the Immaculate Conception with a view to what is won on the Cross, it is Christ's victory that preserves her from that ickiness of original sin as well as a trial like Eve's... wait is that true? I'm just thinking here... correct me if I'm getting heretical... but this seems to make sense in my head...
A frequent question when we studied Genesis was "Where was Adam when the serpent approached Eve?"; He must have been nearby since Eve passes the fruit to him right after eating it. Eve was not protected by Adam from this attack and deceit. Mary, on the contrary, is already protected by the blood of the Lamb; Christ, the new Adam, does not leave us unprotected; He stands in front of his Bride the Church, accepting the consequences of Adam's sin, and tells the devil to take a hike. As the Church was born from His side, and we are born of Him in Baptism... wait I'm just confusing myself... because how come we can't all be preserved from it?
Why do we sin again? ;)
Because, as Fr. Antonio says, there's nothin we love so much as our own sin.
ewww! And yet, so true. Because we wouldn't do it otherwise! Sorry for the unclear and rambling post- please tell me if you have an answer of some sort.
Friday, October 13, 2006
Sr. Wave expressed the other day that lately the presence of holy priests has been such a draw for her; Seeing these men who have given their lives in service to the Church makes us want to give our lives to Jesus as well! They have given all; Don't you desire to do the same?
Thursday, October 12, 2006
He was looking for a special one, he said, and he pulled out one with documentation:
from the manger.
Are you kidding me?
So this afternoon, around 2pm, I kissed a little reliquary holding, as far as we know, a piece of the manger that our Lord lay on as a baby. Come on. I wish I had been kneeling in a chapel on Christmas, or somew place and time when I could at least pretend to contemplate and wrap my head around the significance of that moment. Rather, we were just standing in the archives of the Archdiocese of Washington under flourescent lights and surrounded by filing cabinets. I jumped up and down and said "Can I?!", took it in my hand and kissed it. How funny. Thank you, Baby Jesus, for such a totally unexpected gift!
Just realized last night at adoration... I read Dubay's book on poverty and was very affected by it, and the manger is a sign of Christ's utter poverty... ok then.
Tuesday, October 10, 2006
Wednesday, October 04, 2006
St. Francis is certainly one of the inspirations and patrons for the wretches. Come on, look at our names!
The Canticle of All Creatures
Most High, all-powerful, all-good Lord,
All praise is Yours, all glory, all honour and all blessings.
To you alone, Most High, do they belong,
and no mortal lips are worthy to pronounce Your Name.
Praised be You my Lord with all Your creatures,
especially Sir Brother Sun,Who is the day through whom You give us light.
And he is beautiful and radiant with great splendour,
Of You Most High, he bears the likeness.
Praised be You, my Lord, through Sister Moon and the stars,
In the heavens you have made them bright, precious and fair.
Praised be You, my Lord, through Brothers Wind and Air,
And fair and stormy, all weather’s moods,
by which You cherish all that You have made.
Praised be You my Lord through Sister Water,
So useful, humble, precious and pure.
Praised be You my Lord through Brother Fire,
through whom You light the night
and he is beautiful and playful and robust and strong.
Praised be You my Lord through our Sister,
Mother Earth who sustains and governs us,
producing varied fruits with coloured flowers and herbs.
Praise be You my Lord through those who grant pardon
for love of You and bear sickness and trial.
Blessed are those who endure in peace,
By You Most High, they will be crowned.
Praised be You, my Lord through Sister Death,
from whom no-one living can escape.
Woe to those who die in mortal sin!
Blessed are they She finds doing Your Will.
No second death can do them harm.
Praise and bless my Lord and give Him thanks,
And serve Him with great humility.
Heavenly Father,You gave Your servant Francis
great love for each of Your creatures.
Teach us to see Your design in all of creation.
We ask this in Jesus’ Name. Amen.