Sunday, August 09, 2009

Get up and eat, else the journey will be too long for you!
1 Kings 19:7b

Where to begin?! The last time I posted I had just returned from my annual retreat... By the way, thanks to all those who recommended different combination sunscreen/bug repellents! I'll have to check those out...

Now, I have just returned to Dayton. Well, a few days ago. Marianist LIFE South 2009 ended on Tuesday August 4. We had another fantastic year with wonderful students from Central Catholic High School (San Antonio), St. Matthew Parish (San Antonio), Antonian High School (San Antonio), St. Joseph High School (Victoria, TX), Christopher Columbus High School (Miami), Chaminade-Madonna High School (Hollywood, FL), and Nerinx Hall High School (St. Louis). We had a smaller group this year (61 students), but that's not necessarily a bad thing... especially the day that we had a tremendous rain storm and had to keep everyone in the cafe for a few hours...

On Wednesday Aug 5 the team met all day to do our evaluations of the summer program. Those meetings went very well. We got good feedback from the moderators and students and found many ways in which we can improve for next summer.

Next summer is my last year to work with LIFE as a part of the team. I've been involved with LIFE since 2001. It's hard to believe my time is so quickly coming to a close! We've named my successor as coordinator, however I don't want to post that name here because only the team knows at the moment. I'm excited about the future of LIFE, but I'm sure it'll be difficult to walk away.

On Thursday afternoon I left San Antonio and returned to Dayton. Friday I was back at work and currently I'm enjoying a weekend of not doing much of anything. :) It's nice to have those every once in a while, yes? That brings me to my reflection on the above quote...

The summer before I entered novitiate (2006) I made a week-long retreat with the 2 Marianist brothers who were also entering novitiate in the fall. On the Sunday of our retreat, the first reading was 1 Kings 19:4-8. The quote that stood out to me that entire week of retreat was the quote above, "Get up and eat, else the journey will be too long for you!"

Today, the 19th Sunday in Ordinary Time, the 1st reading is once again 1 Kings 19:4-8. And I think this quote is highly appropriate for where I am these days. ... I'm about to embark on what will be another very busy academic year. Chances are I won't be taking a class this semester (because nothing I need is being offered), but it'll still be packed with UD obligations, travel, retreats, programs, formation gatherings, committee meetings, Marianist celebrations, community "stuff" etc. It will be important for me to stop every once in a while... take a day of reflection once a month or so... just breathe... or else the journey will be too long!

"Get up and eat"... the Psalm for today is Ps. 34 where we proclaim that one should "Taste and see the goodness of the Lord"... and in the Gospel Jesus reminds us that he is the "bread of life." And so... eat - taste - see... indeed, savor... Jesus who gives life. I need not get wrapped up in worry (for who by worrying can add a single day to one's life-span?) or in the busyness of life. Take a breath and pray. Else the journey will be too long!

Many blessings to all who read this!
Sr. N