Saturday, January 14, 2012


Putting clothing, toiletries, and an alarm clock into my luggage for the seven days away from St. Michael Friary. Also browsing the basement library for good spiritual reading during the retreat. I'm not leaving until Monday morning, but I dislike packing immediately prior to travelling. The older I get, the more I am accustomed to moving, but the less I like to feel rushed into moving. Having the luggage ready at least the night before if not earlier reminds me of the existential reality of life as pilgrimage and makes it easier to accept this without anxiety.

Apart from this activity, it is a real day of rest. I'll be going with two of the brothers to the cinema in Forest Hills in a little while. In the evening I'll likely be hanging out with one of the postulants and his friends while they cook and watch one of the football games. It's not about the football and the food -- I am detached from these secular festivals of sport -- it is about fraternity and finding God while giving time to those who want the gift of your presence -- the gift in your presence.

In between, a little bit of physical exercise with the help of our new hand-me-down treadmill and the stationary bike; a little bit of mental exercise with further reading on Francis from the early documents; and a little bit of spiritual exercise with some time in the chapel. A good sabbath to you all.

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