Thursday, December 25, 2008

Solemnity of the Birth of the Lord

Christmas in the Monastery

It is the great blessing of contemplative monastic life to have, through the privilege of time along with the talent and personal devotion of many, to fully celebrate the great feasts of our tradition. Through the faithfulness and generosity of our Redemptorist brothers who are just a few hundred yards away from our monastery at Mt. St. Alphonsus Pastoral and Retreat Center, we revel in all of the rituals of the feast, Liturgy of the Eucharist and homilies that never fail to inspire and enrich.

Yesterday we had morning Mass of December 24 and the Mass at Midnight, moving it to 8pm in favor of our older sisters. That Mass began with the Vigil of Reading for Christmas and ended with a procession to the creche. This morning we will have the Mass of Christmas Day at 11am. All of these Masses celebrated by different priests and concelebrants. What a blessing!

We shared a bounty of Christmas goodies with the Marist Brothers and other friends who joined us for evening Mass. All went very well considering that the day began with no water coming from our taps and water flowing into our kitchen from backed up ice on the roof! But we soldiered on and everything was beautiful. Both problems have been dealt with, at least for the moment.

After Mass today, we will have a great feast lovingly prepared by many hands. Some Redemptorist priests will join us as well as some of our lay associates. The phone keeps ringing and the door bell keeps sounding - well wishers and gifts galore. God is so very good.

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