Good Zeal

A visit

Tonight, I wished that this was not a post but a visit, and that you could have been here with us on this relaxed summer evening full of long shadows and lingering light.

Here is what it was like…

Vespers sung with the attentive ease of a couple long wed. An unhurried trip downstairs for dinner. Quiet talk over a Southern supper of catfish, okra, corn bread, and fruit. A relaxed reach to help another Sister. A second slice of watermelon. Conversation about technology, word and gesture. Easy laughter floating from other tables. A couple of absent Sisters out attending a wake.

Those who needed help received it. Those who didn’t need it offered it. One Sister helped another with her plate. Someone took another’s turn at dishes. A Sister pitched in to cover one who was away.

After dinner, Compline. Familiar texts. Familiar responses. Quiet, unhurried prayer in the comfortable, comforting presence of God and each other. And then, as always, Salve Regina.

After Compline, a walk upstairs in careful lockstep with an elder Sister. A quick fix to her A/C unit. Then a brief walk outside. The summer sounds of tree frogs and crickets. The scent of magnolia. Arriving retreatants. Sister Bernadette strolling by. Then inside to type. Retreatants still arriving. Sister Magdalena stops by and we chat. I go to welcome the retreat group.

You aren’t here. You are reading this post. But consider it not a post but a visit, and imagine yourself here on a relaxed summer evening full of long shadows and lingering light and the infinitely tender goodness of God.

All is well, and all shall be well and all manner of thing shall be well.

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