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Hello! + Praying for you
It's been a busy summer so far!
It has been a while since I’ve shared an update — so first off, hello again!
The last few months have been busy in community and formation. More recently, I had the chance to go back on my home visit to Vancouver to be with family. It was a very grace-filled time, and the Lord could not have picked a better time for me to go back in terms of weather. But most importantly, there were a lot of cross-overs with important community events happening among friends and the Archdiocese more widely, so it was a privileged time to be back. I am grateful to my family who welcomed me back as well as so many of you who I got to see again in person. I am also grateful for many of the experiences I got to have with my loved ones, including catching up with my family, many incredible meals, encounters with nature, re-connecting with friends, and a lot of competitive card games.
After my time in Vancouver, I fly to Boston where the Daughters of St. Paul Motherhouse is. I’ll be spending about a month here to make my annual retreat (which starts tonight!) as well as apostolic experience before heading back to St. Louis.
So while this update and reflection is brief, I did want to let you all know that while I have been praying for you all, I will be holding many of your intentions in a particular way during my upcoming retreat. I’ll be making a 5-day silent retreat (as postulants, we work our way up to the 8-day retreat that the novices and professed sisters make!) that begins tonight and goes through to Saturday.
“When the crowd had been put outside” (Mt. 9:25)
In today’s gospel, which has a beautiful recounting of a healing miracle within a healing miracle, one thing that stood out to me was the way that Jesus cast out the crowds and mourners at the house of the official whose daughter had recently died. There is something very intimate about this healing, which has effects that become immediately public. But the very act of casting people out was striking: in the midst of people questioning Jesus’ identity and authority, it could have been a useful thing for there to be eyewitness acount of such a miracle happening. As it is, Jesus wasn’t too concerned about being understood or validated; rather, His sole desire was to heal and truly know this girl, regardless of her physical condition in the moment.
Similarly, retreats, espcially silent ones, are meant to be like that: There is no major ceremony or pageantry. Instead, it’s bare, stripped down, and silent. The first readings for both years 1 and 2 in the lectionary cycle illustrate this even further: This year (year 1), we hear in Genesis of Jacob encountering God in a dream, which leads him to erect a holy site for worship. Next year (year 2), we receive the beautiful passage from the prophet Hosea: “Therefore, I will now allure her, and bring her into the wilderness, and speak tenderly to her” (Hosea 2:14).
Even if you don’t get the chance to make a silent retreat, I hope that this summer you do find ways to recollect yourself and slow down in the midst of God: Let yourself encounter Him in the quiet, and more importantly, let God encounter you.
Please know of my prayers for you as I make this retreat, and I ask for you to pray for me, too.
In Jesus Master,