We seemed to have begun the season of Lent early this year. Sisters moving from one bedroom to another or moving into different office spaces as they transition into new jobs and responsibilities. In most cases each of these sisters had occupied their office or bedroom space for over 20 years.
When I was vocation director many years back I wrote a little reflection on the topic of community. I called it, “Community is a Verb. ” I want to revisit that reflection. Community life is beautiful. Prayer calls us together three or four times a day.
On the day I changed places with Sister Monika and became subprioress, at dinner time she made me an official present: the telephone she had used in her bedroom to receive night time emergency calls. Well, I was thrilled. The phone and I had a running battle for years—until at last that thorn was removed from my side by a kindly prioress. Amazing how many people called us when they thought they were calling St.
I want to think that life is a continuum, but in reality, it is full of many twists and turns. Life is changing, always moving. Life is cyclical, coming and going, up and down. On difficult days I long for the comfort of the paradise that might have been when I was in my mother's womb. Or the comfort of my childhood, when a kiss or a hug took the pain away and I would continue playing.
One of the required components of our blog is to furnish pictures to go with our posts. Sometimes I have the photos in mind when I write my post and sometimes, I go looking for some of my photos that might enhance my post. Capturing images is an intimate engagement with the external world for me. I bought my first digital camera not because I was interested in photography but because I was curious about how I saw beauty.
This afternoon I am getting ready for our Thursday choir practice. This happens in every Benedictine monastery because it takes practice to chant the psalms and canticles in our Book of Praise twice each day. We practice chanting in one voice--no voice standing out louder than others or sounding very different from the rest. St. Benedict wrote in the Rule that our hearts are to be in harmony with our voices. Sometimes our community can chant so heavenly.
From the I Ching… It is only when we have the courage to face things exactly as they are, without any self-deception or illusion, that a light will develop out of events by which the path to success may be recognized. This could also perhaps be described as the path to knowing ourselves. Not an easy path.
St. Benedict tells us in The Rule that we begin again each day. You may wonder what nuns and monks do in the monastery every day? St. Benedict answered this question many centuries ago: We fall and get up, fall and get up, always. This New Year is a gift, a new opportunity, to begin again, anew, to stand up again. With new hopes, new challenges, new opportunities, to begin again fresh.
I am the Sisters Speak Week 5 blogger, so I only write every few months. My last two posts were about my experiences as the Main Kitchen grocery shopper. It’s been almost exactly 6 months since I began this adventure, and I thought after two blog posts there really couldn’t be anything else to say. I was wrong. So, I am hoping you are able to bear with me through one more post about shopping.
"Deep night, Dark night Night of the longest sigh. . . " --from the poem "Winter Solstice" by Mary Saracino It was the breaking of the shortest day leading into the longest night, the night of the longest sigh--the winter solstice. The weather channel had declared for that morning “Beware of patches of dense fog.