February 15, 2008

Greetings and peace.
It’s been a while since I wrote anything. Here I am again. We’ve had another cold stretch of weather. Last Sunday’s -20 temps and strong winds brought many things to a screeching halt. Sunday felt like a "snow day" when I was teaching. It was an unexpected free-day. We went to 8:30 Mass at the Motherhouse, had brunch, came home and stayed here the rest of the day—warm and safe. There were three things I could have done…but I didn’t get to any of them. Yesterday’s three inches of new snow didn’t cause any disruptions that I am aware of.

February is "I Love To Read Month." A number of us from the Motherhouse accepted the invitation to read to elementary school children in the local schools. I read to Mrs. Hanson’s First Graders at Lindbergh School. It was a delightful time for me. Of course I read a mouse book— "Country Mouse, City Mouse." I brought a bunch of mice from my mouse collection. While I read the story, the teacher set out the mice on the classroom table. After the story, the children went row-by-row to look at the treasures. I will go back to visit again later this year to read another story.

Yesterday was Valentine’s Day. For our family this has always been a special day because it was Mom and Dad’s wedding anniversary. They were married 67 years when Mom died in 2000. I was asked to give a short history of Valentine’s Day to a local Homemakers group and to the Little Falls Lion’s Club. This was a fun assignment. The celebration is based on a lot of myth and legend. Though there are many Saint Valentine’s, not a lot of facts exist about them. In 1969 the feast was dropped from the Catholic Church calendar. But the celebration continues in many parts of the world. Not everyone believes we should celebrate this day. My belief is that if people spread more messages of love and caring and support, we would have a better world. And the Lord knows that we need a better world.

Today our Mass at the Motherhouse is for peace in the country of Kenya. There have been so many deaths, so much property destruction and so many displaced persons in that country since the elections on December 27, 2007. The two sisters from Kenya living with us are concerned about the safety of their families, friends and Community members. Let us storm heaven with petitions for peace not only in Kenya, but all the other parts of world where fighting and war are part of daily life.
Sheila Perrault, our neighbor, has written a book--Brown Eyes—Adopted and Loved. Tomorrow (Feb. 16) she will have a book signing event at Bookin’ It. I finished reading the little book last evening. It was interesting. Part of the story tells of her stay at the St. Cloud Orphanage before her adoption. Our Franciscans Sisters staffed the St. Cloud Orphanage for many years. A few years ago, Sheila had a joyful reunion with some of the Sisters who worked there when she and her brother lived there.

Tomorrow, we have elections for new leaders for our Brainerd Fioretti Fraternity of the Secular Franciscan Order (SFO). Holy Spirit, guide us. I have been a Spiritual Assistant for this group for the past ten years. It has been good.

Pax et Bonum
Sister Mary Lou

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