... rouse one another to love and good works.
Continuing to read what my theology buddies are reading. Also took a look at the winter issue of The Capuchin Journey, published by the development office for the Province of Saint Mary. It features the Superstorm Sandy relief efforts led by our friars and lay secular volunteers who have served hot meals and repaired homes. I am very proud of what they have done with their limited means.
Morning prayer and Mass combined in the back chapel. Then, after breakfast, off to the Santa Barbara Museum of Natural History to see the blue whale and mammoth skeletons and exhibits on the local biology and geology, including halls for insects, mammal and marine life. There was a special photo exhibit of regional owls and woodpeckers. I also saw an exhibit on the Chumash tribes who inhabited the coast, islands, and inland areas of the Central Coast of California. Later, I talked to members of the Santa Barbara chapter of the National Audubon Society, who maintain an aviary on site for disabled birds. I saw up close a barn owl, red-tailed hawk, kestrel, and peregrine falcon. Such beautiful creatures!
It's not a large museum, and some of the exhibits appeared dated, but some basic knowledge never changes. A couple of grade schoolers came and went during the afternoon. It all reminded me of my own elementary school field trips to local science museums, with the always-much-anticipated stop at the gift store with the cool-looking rocks, seashells, or kaleidoscopes.
Coming away from the visit, feeling grateful for creation and wishing I had another lifetime, or at least a do-over of the last thirty years, in which to study God's handiwork more attentively. Natural history is a part of divine history.
Now, to evening prayer, then celebrating a friar's birthday, the fifth birthday we are celebrating in our community this month.
Warm with sunny skies. A good day to be out.