Joys of the Season!

Feast of the Immaculate Conception celebrated today.

Second week of Advent.

If this were January, I wouldn't mind the severe cold so much. Last week we had a foot of fluffy white snow. The best thing about that is that the earth has a good blanket to protect alfalfa and other crops. Yesterday we had just a dusting of new snow—but enough to make slippery roads and sidewalks. It was minus 11 here this morning.

Because December 8th fell on a Sunday, the Feast of the Immaculate Conception was transferred to today. Our official title is Franciscan Sisters of the Immaculate Conception. So today is special to us. We started the day with Morning Prayer together in Chapel, then a waffle breakfast with several choices for toppings. Mass is at 11 a.m. and after Evening Prayer we will have a festive dinner. Sr. Joel has a lovely Mary shrine in the sanctuary in Chapel.

There were deer tracks right outside our main door this morning. We've seen the deer in the apple orchard and in summer in the garden, but this is the first time I've seen tracks right outside our door.

Last week Terry B. made a batch of 51 small fruit cakes. He has one more batch to go. They are the best ever! Those of us who wish some for gifts, have just to sign-up for them. I ordered a couple.

Last Thursday the Ministerial Group were invited to a noon luncheon. We had about 30 guests. The food was good. The prayer was prayerful and the visiting was great.

St. Nicholas was around on Thursday bringing treats to everyone.

Last Friday, the Feast of St. Nicholas, I turned on one of those little flickering battery lights by my St. Nicholas. I thought those little lights would burn about 5 to 10 hours. Well, this little light is still going strong and this is the 4th day! I can hardly believe it.

In spring and summer we have mother ducks sitting on eggs. Now we have a large snow duck on the wall of Clare Residence. It happened when Keith was blowing snow on the sidewalks. I’ll bet one couldn't do that if one tried and here it is, just part of a day’s work. And with these cold temperatures, that duck will stay a while.

On Saturday, Sister Joan Tuberty lead a retreat day, for about 30 Sisters, Associates and others. The focus of the retreat day was Mary, Mother of Jesus. Pictured is the icon Sr. Joan drew.

Remember to keep Christ in Christmas. Keep warm and safe. Remember those who don’t have sufficient housing, food and clothing.

Peace and blessings,
Sister Mary Lou

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