It hardly seems real that in a little over one year from now, Sue and I will be boarding a plane to begin our Camino Santiago. Such a thing would not be possible without the outpouring of support received from so many of you. And how I thank you for that on-going support – not simply material support, for which I am deeply grateful, but for the tremendous friendship, love, encouragement, prayer and more that comes to me every day from so many. There truly are no words.
If I know you, I have your email. To those of you generous ones who I do not know… please leave a comment here, or simply send me your email at festinalente07 at gmail. To all of you who who donated, if I don’t have your snail mail address, and if you are willing, please also send my way so that I can (eventually) send a handwritten thank you. You may not feel that it is necessary, but I would like to do so!
So, nu? That’s a nice Yiddish phrase that, if you check this link (page down to N) you can read the defintion. I’m using it because I love Yiddish and it fits. Lots of things going on here, and if you care to know what they are, please read on. Ultimately, this probably-way-too-long-and-boring post is kind of a ramble through the tangles of my mind and my life in recent days and weeks.
First of all, once again I offer THANKS and GRATITUDE in abundance to all those who through prayer and/or donation have set me forth towards my Camino Santiago in September of 2016. A little over a year – gulp! I started my GoFundMe on July 25, thinking it would take me months to meet my goal. Imagine my surprise and gratitude upon meeting it after 3 weeks. To say that I am knocked down, overwhelmed, and full of gratitude would just scratch the surface. (If you are reading this and saying, “what camino what?” pleasesee here.) Now I must be ready! This is just one element of how and why community matters – what can become real that is lodged only in our heart and not spoken aloud in the world? Thank you all again and again.
Today is the feast day of St. Ignatius of Loyola, founder of the Society of Jesus, also known as the Jesuits. There are so many fine Ignatian websites and resources, that if you are not familiar with St. Ignatius or the Jesuits, you can easily learn more. That Pope Francis is himself a Jesuit, has created a lot more awareness of the order in general.
Ignatius has been close to me for so long, longer than I imagined. He was trailing me, an agent of God, but for many years I was oblivious . Now I smile as I think of the many times our paths have crossed over the years. I think of God weaving the fabric of life, strands coming together to create patterns and pieces that will later become a clearer image.
Today I was given the gift of a little revelation along my Lenten path. The Holy Spirit illuminated a shadow on my heart, the light of which caused me to not take a familiar and well-worn, but circular path to nowhere, but to take the turn, however slight, in another direction.
This makes me wonder what would happen if I slowed down more, asked more questions, sought more silence, listened more attentively, and then acted in accordance with all that. This tells me that I need not wonder, but to slow down, ask more questions, seek more silence, listen more attentively, and then act in accordance with what is revealed to me by the Spirit.
How old am I? Slowly learning, learning slowly, but still on the path. Thanks for being here with me. Thanks be to God. May we carry one another in prayer on this journey, at Lent and always.
Thanks be to God, and to the many people who supported me in so many ways, I graduated! My husband and stepdaughter put up with the most challenges, such as extended absences due to class, study, or just my preoccupation with staring at the computer while trying to write a paper.
There were my professors, all of whom offered great and generous gifts of both challenge and knowledge. The staff also gave without reservation – both the Albany staff, and the Rochester staff. My classmates and peers cannot be left out here, either.
And then there are the many, many, many people who generously prayed, talked, suggested, cajoled and so much more. Thank you one and all.