Saturday, May 28, 2011
It was good to be with her! A little less wonderful, however, was discovering that the checked bag that Pat and I shared didn't quite make it to our final destination. This was the bag that contained my hair mousse! What is a girl to do? We were assured that the likelihood of the bag arriving on the next incoming flight due in later that afternoon was high, and so we made our way to Teresa's home on the range in Ethete.
Much to our delight we received word at 5 pm that night that our bag had indeed finally made it to Wyoming! Bad news? We couldn't pick it up because the airport was "closing for dinner." This is the reality of small town America--a reality of which east coasters are unaware. This meant I was going to go a day without hair mousse.
The simplicity of going a day without my self-proclaimed "necessities" became a freeing experience for the week. On our flight later in the week Pat and I had a very intriguing conversation concerning the vow of poverty, lived as simplicity, which has opened my heart to new possibilities of letting go. While I don't have any desire to give up my hair mousse I do think there are times I could obsess a little less!
These few days in Wyoming have opened my heart to the beauty of creation not often witnessed by the masses. The first full day on the reservation Teresa took me to a home Mass. During the consecration I could not help but be slightly distracted by the clanging of glass in the kitchen where someone engaged in final preparation of the dinner to follow. My distraction, however, quickly melted into reflection. Suddenly the melody of rattling dishes replaced the bells of the altar server and the realization of the reality of the Body of Christ became clear. We the people have become the consecrated Body of Christ, and as I sat pondering this I suddenly felt like Thomas Merton on the street corner of Fourth and Walnut, I "suddenly realized that I loved all the people and that none of them were, or, could be totally alien to me."
We have moved on from buffalo and prairies where cattle were herded to the fast-paced freeways of the city where people are herded. My time in Wyoming will not soon leave me, I just got off the phone with Teresa who called to share that she was going through a little withdraw. I too feel that loss. But the beauty of community is that no matter how many miles span the land between us we are bound by our sisterhood! And it is this thought that keeps a smile on my heart.
Saturday, May 21, 2011
If you are reading this then I suppose you too have been "left behind." It's a little funny to me when I think of those who believed whole-heartedly that today was going to mark the commencement of the end of the world with the rapture. These are people who literally interpret sacred Scriptures, everywhere except two verses that is. The one that says we will know not the day or hour when the Son of Man will return, and the one where Jesus said, "this is my body, this is my blood do this in remembrance of me."
Beginning with the 12 apostles every generation to walk this Earth believed that Jesus would return in their life time. Personally, I think we've got billions of years still ahead. It can't be that easy . . . we've got a lot to learn about peace on Earth. Ending the world now would be like eating half baked chicken . . . ewww. It's just not time!
Nonetheless all of this "end of the world" hoopla has got me thinking. I've been reflecting on that age old question, "am I ready?" I believe that my answer would be most definitely! Am I perfect? No. But God does not ask for perfection, God simply asks us to try. I should not be living my life by the predictions of the end, I should be living it so whenever that day comes I am embraced by God because I have always lived in a way pleasing to God.
Many people lived their life today in anticipation for the rapture. Shortly after the supposed time of the rapture had past I leaned over to Sr. Janet (with whom I was attending Mass) and with my eyes focused on the consecrated host raised above the altar said, "I guess we were left behind." And that was just fine with me, I was already with Jesus. I was reflecting upon this thought today and wondered how many people would be disappointed to be "left." I did not live my day that way. I spent my day celebrating life and sisterhood. Sr. Nora Nash celebrated her Golden Jubilee today, 50 years as a professed Sister of Saint Francis of Philadelphia. Celebrating her beautiful and amazing life ranked much higher on my priority list than biting my nails over the end. And for this I believe Jesus smiled today!
During the homily today it was shared that when we hear God's words, "remain in my love," it implies that we are "already in God's love." It's not about predicting the end, it's about living in the present in such a way that the end does not really matter. We never know what tomorrow will bring and so we do our best with today! After all Jesus himself told us not to worry about tomorrow, it will take care of itself!