Showing posts from August, 2011

Another Birthday!

Well, I should start by saying that it's not literally my birthday (that's in February, in case you needed to know).  But--yesterday was the anniversary of my entrance into the novitiate!  I'm officially a second-year novice! (The pics are what my novitiate community sent me--the Elmo card cracked me up!!) So, our formation program includes two years of the novitiate (sometimes called the noviceship, which I tend to make jokes about...falling overboard...needing a "captain"...).  The first year is bound by a number of rules, based on the law of the Catholic Church.  Basically, it's a time when the novice focuses on her relationship with God.  She does not do any sort of paid ministry (but she should do some voluntary ministry that does not carry too much responsibility, and that brings her in touch with God's people), and she spends more time in prayer than she otherwise has the freedom for.  Other things are included, like study of the religious order,

Community and Care

I finally saw the film Of Gods and Men this morning, and I think it will stick with me for a while.  If you haven't seen it, you should!  It is incredibly beautiful.  (And with that warning, I'm going to reveal a bit of the ending--though it's something I was glad I knew before I watched it.) The film tells the true story of a Trappist monastery in the 1990s in Algeria.  The small group of French Trappists, who had been in this little village for over a century, was targeted by a group of terrorists during the civil war, and eventually killed.  The story is not about their death, but about their life with God, their love, and their commitment to each other and the surrounding community. Several touching scenes show how the monks respect and care for each other, though I don't really want to give away too many details here for those who haven't seen it.  There is, however, a sense of the deep compassion they possess for one another, and the acknowledgement tha