Search This Blog

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Called to journey with one another

In today's Gospel, Jesus passed through towns and villages, teaching as he went and making his way to Jerusalem. He walked; roads were only dusty, rutted paths. He and his followers had to contend with the climate, fatigue, dust, but Jesus was a man with a mission. He taught the truth and not just what people wanted to hear.

We are called to journey with each other. A sentence from the recent General Chapter of the Society of the Sacred Heart keeps coming to mind: "To understand others and to journey with them we must enter into their reality and let ourselves be changed by their lives." How am I letting others change me?

Trip continued and perhaps finished today:
I think I have now been writing about my three-week trip daily for two weeks and it is time to sum it up with just a few of the highlights. The trip to the Lake District was, of course, beautiful and my mind is still filled with pictures of the English countryside. In London, I will try to limit myself to what I consider three outstanding graces, each still influencing me as I write:
1. The tremendous welcome I received from the Community of New House where I stayed; each made me feel at home in so many ways. I was overwhelmed by their thoughtfulness and kindness. I also enjoyed the community prayer each evening in their Chapel and I am just so grateful to each who showed me the love of the Heart of Christ.
2. The time I had for prayer in the Sacred Heart Chapel that contains the tombs of Father Varin, Reverend Mother Digby, and Reverend Mother Stuart--all important figures in the history of the Society of the Sacred Heart. It is a holy place and survived the bombing that destroyed most of Roehampton where we had a teacher training college; now Roehampton University occupies the site with five colleges and some of our Sisters, including the Provincial, live students in Barat House; I was invited to tea there and able to meet some of the students. But to go back to the Chapel and the grace I felt every time I walked over to pray there; I had Mass one day and stayed to read some of Mother Stuart's poems in a little red book that Jane gave me in Scotland. I really felt the presence of Mother Stuart and her blessing.
3. An unexpected grace: I was able to assist at a private Mass in the Chapel of St. Edward the Confessor in Westminster Abbey. The pictures above show the Abbey and the tomb of St. Edward who died just a week after finishing Westminster Abbey; his tomb is still there in the small Chapel not usually open to anyone because of the 13th century Italian floor (it was covered with a rug) - the Mass was for those who had tickets - only a small group, but Monica managed to get two tickets. We had the entire Abbey to ourselves when we came out of the Mass and that was thrilling; all the lights were on but it was silent!
My entire trip was special. I also saw, on my last afternoon, over 50 deer in a nearby park grazing in at least six different spots! I returned grateful for all and especially grateful for all the marvelous people I met both in Scotland and England and for my vocation to an international Society for one is at home in any Sacred Heart community!

No comments: