Thursday, May 10, 2018

Making a Difference

Going on Tuesday to Holy Cross Monastery to be part of a three person leader team. We have over 20 signed up for the workshop. Exciting.

Holy Cross was a special place for me for almost 30 years before we started having workshops there. I took members of St. John's there for a retreat for over a decade and took some folks from the Cluster Churches a few years ago. Sometimes I've gone by myself or for one of their programs.

The ministry of the Benedictine Episcopal monks there is 'hospitality'--and they're darn good at it.

One of the first times I was  there with St. John's folks, at the end of Compline, the last of the 7 services of the day, three of the monks went over to a picture of the Virgin Mary and started chanting "Hail Mary, full of grace...."

The parishioner beside me said, under his breath, "Oh, My God!" He was a Congregationalist who married into the Episcopal church.

I patted his arm and whispered, "No, Don, God's mother...."

I also had Spiritual Direction at Holy Cross for two whole sessions.

It was the only time I ever tried spiritual direction (though I was in Jungian analysis for a dozen years). I only did it because I was tired of having younger priests look at me in horror when they'd ask me who my Spiritual Director was and I told them I didn't do it. I thought I'd give it a spin.

I met twice with one of the brothers and it wasn't bad at all. But then he up and ran off with one of the postulants and I decided I wouldn't endanger any other vocations.

(My favorite professor in college was Mr. Stasny who taught Honors English and the Great Books. I had 7 classes from him in 8 semesters which means I could have had a "minor" in Stasny-ology.  He was, by the way, one of the two professors--the other was religion teacher Manfred Otto Mitzen--who nominated me for a trial year in seminary, which I received and got sidetracked on my dreams to teach American Literature in some small liberal arts college.

I knew Stasny so well that I once asked him why he didn't have a Ph.D. He looked at me askance 
and answered, "my dear Bradley, who would test me?"

So when people these days ask me about my spiritual director, I look at them obliquely and ask, "my dear friend, who could direct me?)

No comments:

Post a Comment

Blog Archive

About Me

some ponderings by an aging white man who is an Episcopal priest in Connecticut. Now retired but still working and still wondering what it all means...all of it.