Sunday, September 5, 2010

Corpus Christi: A Playful Place to Pray

The air was crisp this morning as if nature was beckoning the autumn winds to arrive early. The streets were abandoned as I walked my way to Mass. Ordinarily "crisp air" and "abandoned streets" would not be fitting adjectives to describe the streets of Media on a Sunday morning in early September, but today was different. Today I was moving into community with the Sisters of Saint Francis of Philadelphia and having spent Saturday night with a friend, and having had plans in place to meet my father at 8:30 am to begin my move, I had forgotten about Mass and so had no choice but to attend the Mass I did not even know existed until this morning, the 7 am Mass!

The Spirit never ceases to astound me. As I sat in the pew at Nativity BVM I found new strength in the paintings of the Blessed Mother that graced the front wall of the church. On the right stood a three year old Mary with her parents, on the left stood a teenage Mary with angels. It suddenly struck me that from the moment of her conception she was being prepared by God to say yes. How loving is our God that so much time would be spent preparing us for the moment when we are given the chance to say yes! The most beautiful part to me is that despite the immense amount of love that God places in preparing us, we are still given free choice. We are still capable of saying no.

As for me, I have discovered the yes that rests somewhere deep in my heart. And today I start that journey.

It is not the typical journey one might imagine when a woman shares that she is "entering the convent." There is no habit, there is no grandiose farewell to my parents, there is no leaving my job behind. I moved with the help of my father and sister into a convent in Wilmington, Delaware where I will be living with three wonderful women. Did I mention they are about 3 or 4 decades older than I am? I suppose this is the reality of religious life in the 21st Century, but somewhere deep in me, beside that yes I believe is the faith that my yes will free others to follow. Maybe that makes me self righteous, but I have faith that my yes means something beyond myself, and maybe I cannot explain it or even understand it, but I believe it!

Side-note, I just discovered that because the Internet is supported by the school here I cannot access prohibited sites such as facebook. The 21st century girl inside just had a panic attack . . . I am told we can remedy that dilemma. God does provide!

A few notes on my new home and community. I am living with Sisters Joan, Kathy, Maureen and occasionally Dolores. The home is lovely! As I was unpacking my life I received a phone call from both Joan and Kathy who are away at the moment. I have felt most welcomed, who wouldn't with flowers, and notes, and even a small (and might I add useful) gift from Sr. Elise.

What I believe I will most enjoy about this community is the playfulness that accompanies the spirituality of these prayerful women. Jesus was a funny dude, I think in our culture and society combined with the distance in time we are from the years he walked this earth we miss the playfulness of Jesus. Not this community, they get it and for this I am thrilled to be beginning this adventure with them by my side.


  1. Hey Sara,
    Welcome to local community life!!! I was thinking about you so much lately and was wondering when your moving date would be and lo and behold, there you are in an email to me and a few hundred other friends and family!!!
    Count on my prayers everyday! We will have to get together soon!! Love, Julie
    PS Did I tell you that I am proud of you for making the plunge into the great unknown!!!

  2. Julie,

    Thanks so much!!! Aren't you happy I remembered to include you in the mass email this time!!! :)It is all very exciting! I'm happy to be beginning this journey!!!

  3. Welcome, Sara, and many blessings! I'll give your blog a "referral" on mine.

    And welcome to Wilmington also! A big piece of my heart is there.

  4. Sr. Ann Marie,

    Thank you so much!!! It is good to be here!!! And awesome on the "referral!" I hope that others enjoy it!!

  5. Well, Sara-without-an-h, this is my first plunge into blog and I'm not totally comfortable with your whole world reading my message! But here goes. Will I pray for you every day? I already do. As the oldest (not necessarily wisest) sister in your AC, here's my confession: the mirror and calendar tell me I'm old; but my mind and spirit haven't gotten the message yet!! I welcome you with open arms--and heart.

  6. Sr. Marie,

    I'm so glad you were able to read it!!! If you ever want to not post publically you can always email me!

    Thanks for your open arms "and heart" welcome! I appreciate it so much. You have all made me feel most welcome and for that I'm so happy!