Monday, March 3, 2008

"No place like home..."

We’re HOME!!! Sister Veronica and I came in Friday evening (to the wrong airport, but that’s another story.) Our Community Room was filled with sisters ready to embrace us. It was a hug-fest of epic proportion!

I’ve had a couple of days to absorb the sweetness of home – the love that is a constant reminder that GOD is. There were a few tears of joy in chapel as we prayed the Liturgy of the Hours I have come to know and love so much. I think I grinned through most of the Sunday Eucharist. The joy of being back at our table…the music that is so much a part of my prayer life…and the extended community of friends and families that join us each weekend filled my soul with gratitude. If it weren’t Lent, the “A” word would have been the perfect outward sign of my inward joy. I guess I can wait three weeks for that one.

It is early morning as I write this. I can’t seem to sleep until my usual hour. And, at night, I can’t seem to stay awake past the evening news. But the transition feels so much easier in this direction. I was a mess for two weeks in Rome as my body adapted slowly to the new hour. I am writing from our convent in Richmond, VA. Sister Andrea, Sister Charlotte and I made the two-hour drive after Midday Prayer on Sunday. For the first time in two months, the three of us had Sunday dinner together and prayed Evening Prayer. I slept like a baby (only once waking and forgetting where I was.)

I am excited for the day ahead…my first day back at Saint Gertrude High School! I am teaching the 9th Grade today. I find them particularly dear and eager to forge a relationship with the sisters. For many, Sister Andrea and I are the very first they have met. Our lesson plan is supposed to be an introduction to monasticism, but I think their curiosity about my Roman adventure might slow us down a bit. No matter. It’s all good. The day will be what it will be.

I decided to keep the blog title as it is - first, for the benefit of those who have added it to their “favorites” (such an honor!) and second, because at the heart of the monastic life is the goal of heaven. Saint Benedict believed that loving each other in community was the key to eternal life for the monastic – that we would go to GOD together. So, the thirty-five women in this house are, quite literally, “monastics on a journey.” I hope these daily reflections on our everyday will be gift to you all. Thank you for the opportunity to dig deep and see our life with new eyes. I’m looking forward to sharing our journey with all of you.

Blessings and love,

- Sister Vicki