I will preface this reflection by stressing that I imply no disrespect to any members of other traditions I am not saying that, inside this “universal church” to which we belong, one particular Rule of life is superior to yet another.
With that becoming mentioned, I came to a higher appreciation of my personal spirituality this previous week, spending a couple of days at the beautiful University of Mary in Bismarck. I had not grasped ahead of the sturdy Benedictine presence on that campus, despite the fact that a couple of my aunts had graduated from there.
We had been invited to the campus to take element in the fourth annual “Vocations Jamboree,” an chance for which I was pretty grateful. We even got to keep in remarkable guest rooms on campus the virtue of hospitality was unquestionably evident there!
Wednesday morning, I discovered my way to a tiny chapel in which to have my morning stop by with my Beloved. I was so thankful one particular in no way knows if a chapel and/or time for prayer will be out there at unique events such as this.
Portion of my Lenten practice this year is attempting to make the Stations of the Cross every day. I truly cherish this unique kind of prayer which brings us additional deeply into meditation on our Lord’s sufferings. Hence it was that, following finishing my half hour of meditation on the scriptures, my eye searched the walls of the smaller oratory, seeking for plaques of the Stations. There have been none.
I assume of Dorothy, in The Wizard of Oz, who mentioned: “Toto, I’ve a feeling we’re not in Kansas any longer.” I was not in a Franciscan property any longer…
Other elements of the chapels there reinforced this realization for me, such as but not restricted to, the monastic style positioning of the pews. (Once more, I want to strain that I am not saying that one particular way is greater than yet another.)
Getting immersed in the Benedictine spirituality, which is somewhat foreign to me, brought me to the conclusion that I truly am a Franciscan.
Really, St. Francis’ 3 excellent devotions, to Christ in the Crib, on the Cross, and the Eucharist, have been crucial to my spirituality because childhood.
There are images of me as a toddler sitting ahead of the manger set (the steady was constructed by my dad and the ceramic statues painted by my mom), absorbed in the scene. In fifth grade, I was element of a living stations-variety efficiency, acting as a lady of Jerusalem. I also bear in mind fondly attending Friday evening Stations of the Cross at our parish church.
I bear in mind a evening in (5th grade??) CCD (Religious Ed.) class, when our teacher took us into the new Adoration chapel, and introduced us to how to stop by Jesus there. (This was to develop into the spot I 1st skilled my contact to religious life nearly ten years later.)
With all of this, it’s no wonder I ended up in a neighborhood following St. Francis’ way of living the gospel.
Nonetheless, it wasn’t till late in my procedure of “browsing for the right spot” that I became open to the possibility of a Franciscan neighborhood.
But, that’s yet another story altogether!