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Our community is abuzz with silent, happy activity this week as we prepare to celebrate the love of our sisters who have been faithfully serving in love and prayer over a period of sixty years for three of them and fifty years for two. Some young people cannot comprehend making a commitment for life in this period of history when long term commitment seems almost unimaginable. I can best express such wonder in the words of Karl Rahner when speaking at a Solemn Profession many years ago:
Feel all irritable today. Have no idea why. I keep telling myself to ‘stay in the NOW’, thank God for Eckhart Tolle! I hate feeling this way when I don’t know the reason. Of course, that is my pride. I guess I am hopping mad about something which hasn’t surfaced yet. Too early in the day to even have the energy to think it through! No doubt it will come to consciousness at a time when I least expect it to appear. Hope it does not throw me for a loop! Stay close, Jesus.
Each year as a Cistercian monk or nun we have the privilege of making an eight day retreat. It is always a special time when the ordinary duties of the day are put aside (only essential work being done) and we spend a more intense time of pondering, praying and listening to the Spirit deep within our hearts. A time to reflect on the quality of our life given for others. Have I been faithful to that “first love” which brought me to the Abbey? Is my life totally given so that others may live? Totally poured out in love? The heart ponders, the spirit speaks. As St.
Planning a community celebration today. The sisters are so willing and even longing to share their “talents” for the joy of the community. I love that line at the end of RB, “….and may he bring us together to life everlasting”. Sounds good to me. We have walked the monastic journey together so why not go to Him together. Who was it who saw us all just sitting outside the gates of heaven waiting for us all to go together! Hope we don’t have to wait too long! To me it is the little things we do together which make community life so enriching.
Distracted in choir, mind wandering over the beauty of our young sisters. Such a long road ahead of them yet they are full of enthusiasm to walk the monastic journey. I don’t know why but I want to protect them from the rough patches which will inevitably come – that is life. Deep within me I know that these “rough patches” will be the very ground of growth to full potential and strengthen them in love. Take care of them, Jesus. I guess you will without me even asking you!
Our simple Cistercian life holds many precious moments when all of a sudden, unexpectedly you come upon yet another gift of nature unfolding before your eyes. We have time to stop, embrace and contemplate such moments in our lives, each season bringing more and more created wonders. Such an experience happened to me recently when walking in the woods. I looked up and my eyes beheld a whole field of wild, yellow flowers dancing in the breeze as if to say to all who came upon them, “Yes, even the cold, snowy, icy winters we endure cannot take our life away.