Saturday, January 21, 2012

Getting It Right

At our weekly Bible study group this week, our leader was absent because she had to attend a PTA meeting for her child. We had as a substitute an expert, Jack, who had taught the course before (in fact, his wife wrote the course) but lives at a great distance. Apparently, our leader will be absent next week as well. As we were finishing up the session, Jack looked at me and said, "You're an experienced leader at work; you could lead this group next week because it really is too far for me to come again."

Oh, my! I am still learning. After all, I converted to Catholicism rather recently. This will be the blind leading the blind, I am afraid, but Jack was confident and handed me his notes for next week (those will help). Well, I do know a lot about shared governance, servant leadership, mentoring, coaching, and facilitated teaching, so I guess/assume/hope that I will be able to count on the aggregate knowledge of those present to create a mathemagenic session next week. (I am also counting on Sr. M, who was absent this week, to be present next week and help. She is a faithful presence at our Bible Study meetings and our prayer group meetings, and I have learned much from her.)

After the Bible Study meeting, one of the members of the group who also attends the weekly prayer group meeting, which I lead (long story of how the most unlikely person -- me -- got involved in doing that), started asking me a number of questions about contemplative prayer. She had been reading my book, A Believer-in-Waiting's First Encounters with God, and what she read made her yearn for deeper contemplation. While I have had wonderful experiences with contemplative prayer, there is only one person -- a priest -- within driving distance who teaches the Jesus prayer or any other kind contemplation. So, what I know has mostly from from God. Following some urging from my friend, I agreed that we could use our next movie night -- once a month we watch a movie as part of our prayer group activities -- to watch a video on contemplative prayer. I don't know what I will be able to say myself on the topic. I can do little more than share experience, and that makes me a little concerned/nervous.

So, when I arrived home, I sent up a prayer: "I need a lot of guidance here, Lord. You've put some precious people in my hands."

Immediately came a correction: "In My hands."

Of course, I am at best only the conduit. How easy it is to forget! I am sure now that both sessions will go precisely the way God wants.

Sunday, January 1, 2012

Happy New Year! Welcome, 2012!

Wishing one and all a blessed 2012, which has dawned bright and sunny here in San Ignatio. Along with it has arrived my first decision of the new year: whether or not to take revenge on Donnie.

As usual, Donnie and I had made plans to welcome in the new year with a mini-party. Some champagne. A few snacks. And Doah.

As usual, I feel asleep and became nigh onto comatose around 10:30. Doah lasted another hour, then toddled off to bed, emerging, according to Donnie, around 12:30 in the morning, like a groundhog on Feb. 2, saw his shadow, and scurried back to the bedroom.

As for me, I never did wake up. Donnie, ever the photographer -- and, in this case, as is typical of our New Year's eve celebrations, the lone celebrant -- took a picture of me zonked out on the couch and pasted it on Facebook. Of course, that brought it a lot of comments!

Now, he is sleeping in after all his heavy partying, and I am wide awake, greeting the sunny day and new year. Doah is dancing about, demanding breakfast, and I am ever so tempted to take a picture of Donnie, zonked out in bed, and paste it on Facebook!

Happy days and interesting decisions, my friends, I wish you in 2012!

(note: image from -- it stunned me; hope you like it)