December 22, 2008

The last week of Advent. How fast it has gone. “Wait for the Lord, whose day is near.” These are the words to a Taize refrain we sang at Mass this morning. The Lord is already here, but comes to us anew again each Christmas. My prayer is that we can see and recognize how and when the Lord enters our lives each day. God often comes to us through others who are part of our day, if only we have eyes to see God’s intervention in our lives.

Our first news is that Sr. Ramona Johnson very quietly went to heaven Saturday evening, December 20th. What a wonderful example to all of us of patient acceptance of her suffering of Lou Gehrig’s Disease these past 5+ years…to have such a keen mind and have such a hard time communicating her thoughts and desires. May she live in the joy of the Lord.
And now she can celebrate Christmas in heaven!

Another of our Sisters, Sister Susan Schik, is very near to death. She is my classmate. We are in the Reception Class of ’53 I and many Sisters have spent many hours sitting with her these past days. Sister Baptista, her sister, also appreciates having Sisters coming to be with Sister Susan. It is a consolation to know that someone is with the dying person.

Last Thursday we got a new postage machine in the convent mailroom. So far it is not much of a friend of mine…until I get used to it, and learn better how to use it. This afternoon we were putting postage on boxes of Altar Breads. It took two of us a while to figure out how to weigh and postage the boxes. But eventually we got the hang of it. (That little paper pad of our own written directions will be a constant companion for me for a while. Reading the directions from the User’s Guide seemed quite complicated.)

Last Saturday we had about seven inches of new snow. And more is promised for tonight and tomorrow. When it gets too deep for me to feel safe driving the car, I just stay home. I don’t like to get stuck as I’m not much good at shoveling or pushing!

One thing with all this cold weather, the ice is deep so the fisher people can safely play their trade. I know of several people who have been out trying their luck

A couple weeks ago, they had a blessing for our new house in Mexico. Sr. Janice told me the house was duly blessed with about 300 people in attendance for the event and the goodies afterward.

Christmas Eve we will be singing carols for half an hour before the 7:30 p.m. Christmas Mass. All are invited for refreshments afterwards in St. Francis Hall.

Our Mass on Christmas day is at 8:30 a.m. Again, all are invited to attend.

Sunday, December 28th, is the Feast of the Holy Family. My prayer is for all families that there be peace and harmony. I pray for all families that struggle because of addiction, mental illness, chronic sickness or ongoing trials of any kind, that they will be fortified and blessed with God’s special love and favor.

I wish you a Merry Christmas. May the Lord give you special blessings of peace and joy as we celebrate the Birth of Jesus. It was St. Francis who wanted to see with his own eyes what the birth of Jesus would have looked like. So he gathered shepherds and animals in a cave and read the Gospel of Luke and then preached to the people of the wonder of the event of the Birth of the Son of God in such humble circumstances.

Pax et Bonum
Sister Mary Lou

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