Life with the Cloistered Domincan Nuns

Life with the Cloistered Domincan Nuns

Wednesday, September 27, 2017

Novice Mistress Meeting in the Bronx

This week our Novice Mistress, Sister Mary Rose, is attending the annual Novice Mistress Meeting held at Corpus Christi Monastery in the Bronx. They are having talks in the mornings given by Father Walter Wagner, OP, the current Pastor of St. Vincent Ferrer Church in Manhattan. Almost all the Novice Mistresses have been able to attend. We are only missing the ones from Trinidad and Lancaster PA. The meeting is going very well and our hosting community is very warm and welcoming.

From left to right: Sr. Joseph Maria (Summit NJ); Sr. Mary Jordan (Marbury AL); Sr. Joseph Marie (Menlo Park CA); Sr. Mary Angela (Los Angeles CA); Sr. Mary Rani (Farmington Hills MI); Sr. Mary Rose (Lufkin TX); Sr. Mary of the Sacred Heart (Bronx NY); Sr. Emmanuella, (Springfield IL); Sr. Isabelle (Squamish, BC, Canada); Sr. Maria Pia (Bronx NY); and Fr. Walter Wagner, OP (NYC)

Friday, September 15, 2017

Retreat in the Desert

The Nuns are making their annual retreat from September 13-20. Many people laugh when they hear the nuns are going on retreat. "Aren't you in a perpetual retreat?!"  Well, yes. But we do live in community, and sometimes we need more solitude than we normally have; as well as extra silence and time for prayer, reading, and simply resting.

We usually have a "preached" retreat in which someone preaches to the entire community twice a day on aspects of the spiritual life, plus the homily at Mass ties in with the theme of the retreat. Another kind of retreat might be a "directed" retreat, in which a person might meet daily, or every other day, with a Retreat Master and share privately what he or she has been praying about.

 In the photo above, Fr. Emmerich is explaining where he obtained his white rosary.

Our retreat Master this year is Father Emmerich Vogt,OP, from the Western Province headquartered in California. We had never met him before so when he arrived Tuesday afternoon we arranged to visit with him, before "going into the desert" Wednesday morning. Although Father Vogt is originally from Connecticut, he has lived most of his life in California. He has had various ministries: parish work, Provincial, chaplain for our nuns in Los Angeles, and now giving retreats and workshops throughout the country, and world.

The theme of our retreat is "Liturgical Asceticism".  We are enjoying the retreat and Father Emmerich's very thought provoking reflections. He is funny yet profound.

Friday, September 8, 2017

Chaplains - Old and New

Our new chaplain, Fr. John Lydon, OP, began his ministry with us on August 1. He comes from Philadelphia, but is quite acclimated to living in Louisiana and Texas. Most of his ministry has been in the area of Campus Ministry. It's easy to see that he must have done well. He is down to earth and loves people. We thoroughly enjoy his daily homilies and never know what to expect.

By co-incidence, just yesterday our previous Chaplain, Fr. Marcos Ramos, OP, successfully defended his doctoral dissertation in Toronto, Ontario, Canada.
Ad multos anos!!
That's more or less, Latin for "Congratulations".

Saturday, September 2, 2017

Hurricane Harvey

The recent hurricane to charge through Texas was not as windy as some, but it was very cruel none the less. We are praying for our many friends and benefactors along the coast who have been flooded by the overabundant water.

During the Hurricane itself we received many phones calls from friends and relatives to check on us to see if we were OK. Yes, we are fine and thank you for your love and concern. We only had a light rain for over a week that amounted to about 2 feet, but fortunately no flooding. Our pond did fill up as you can see.

During Hurricane Rita about 12 years ago, there was a great deal of wind and we lost over 40 trees. However, because there was not much wind we only lost one tree. It looks like it fell over due to water-logged soil.

Since Hurricane Harvey left the area, many evacuees have come up to Lufkin and other towns, from what in Texas is called the "Golden Triangle", that is, Beaumont, Port Arthur and Orange. It is called golden because of Spindletop that brought much wealth to the region. Spindletop was the first oil well along the Gulf Coast and issued Texas and the USA into the oil boom age. Now the area is populated with refineries.

Lufkin has almost 2,000 evacuees and some places have run out of food. So we sent down some food (they wanted cooked meals). In the photos below you can see our latest donations: healthy chicken soup and nourishing Texas white beans.

We pray for all who have been affected by Hurricane Harvey. May the Lord send you the Good Samaritans you need, and  the Lord embrace you with His compassion and courage.