Thursday, February 26, 2009

On the road...

I will be at Christendom College for their vocation fair until Sunday. Look for a blog sometime Monday afternoon. Please keep me and the students there in your prayers this weekend.

Blessings and love to you all...
- Sister Vicki

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Happy LENT...

OK...I have to say that I'm a bit homesick for the monastery today. Our Morning Prayer on Ash Wednesday is so beautiful and, for good reason, it's also a private liturgy. The prioress give us a Lenten Exhortation. That's a fancy way of saying she talks to us about the forty days. Then, the sisters day aloud the things that we are sorry for - the sins against community, really. This usually fills me with feeling because we are so honest, so vulnerable in this tender moment. We offer one another the same mercy GOD offers to each of us. This liturgy touches us all deeply. Then, we place our lenten resolutions in a basket. Sister takes them to her office and reads them carefully. The resolutions are returned to us within the day with Sister Cecilia's comments and blessings. It's an ancient monastic tradition that we continue to honor. I love it... Fortunately, for a 21st century Benedictine, there is e-mail! I heard from Sister Cecilia already. And, she attached the Exhortation which I have already read. It is one of her best. Sister encourages us to use these 40 days to hone the monastic practices, to give ourselves to them anew out of love for Christ. Her words always encourage me. Sister writes, "We have to live this life intentionally. We cannot just attend, or just be, we must BECOME." That's certainly why I came to the monastery - to keep becoming.

So, I wish each of you a joyful, holy Lent. May each morning bring new resolve to live the gospel with passion and courage. May we meet at the foot of the cross, ready to share the holiest of days. May we run on the path of GOD's commandments, our hearts overflowing with the inexpressible delight of love (Rule of Benedict, Prologue 49).

Blessings and love to you all...
- Sister Vicki

Monday, February 23, 2009

Listen...with the ear of your heart.

I’ve just returned from four days at the monastery. I headed north on Thursday to meet the first of six vocation guests coming in for the weekend. Twice a year we gather a cohort of new friends for a “Monastic Discernment Weekend.” Women I’ve been in conversation with in the last few months come to “check us out.”

It takes tremendous courage to spend a weekend in a strange place with 33 nuns you’ve never met. They come with a suitcase packed with hopes and dreams for their life in CHRIST. They come with hearts on fire with love and longing for GOD. They come with their fears about what a new path might mean.

I’ve participated in about ten of these “MDW’s” now. I am always in awe of the women who brave our new world. They remind me of myself – of that frightening first visit to the monastery nearly ten years ago. I remember the terror… the fears…all mixed-up with the knowledge that GOD is doing something new. I admire each one of these women for taking another step in the process of discernment. Each one blessed us in some way. Each one goes with our blessing and prayers. I pray that each one will find what they are looking for – that GOD will finish what has begun in them. I know GOD will. Until then…they remain in my prayers until we meet again.

Blessings and love to you all…
- Sister Vicki