It is 6:00 am and the monastery is stretching its arms and shaking off sleep. Some of us have been awake since 4:00 am. The rest of us have been arising one by one, each of us with an alarm clock set to our own particular early morning rhythm.
Like people everywhere, each Sister has her own unique pattern of waking up to open her prayer book and Bible, pour coffee, and tend to early morning chores. Right now, Sr. Mary Adrian has completed her ‘table-waiting,’ readying jams, bread, fruit, butter, juices, etc. for our breakfast after Lauds. Sr. Bernadette has picked up the morning papers and distributed them to their various spots within the monastery. Sr. Emilie is up in the sacristy preparing for the liturgies of the day. Several Sisters are already in their choir stalls, engaged in silent prayer or spiritual reading. Wherever we happen to be within the monastery, we are up, and ready for the day.
Outside, Kitty B is making her early morning rounds, awaiting Sr. Magdalena who will feed her after Lauds. The air is quiet. The pond is still. The sky is filled with beneficence. Flower baskets sway gently along the dining room porch. Exhausted trees rest after dancing freneticly through last night’s powerful storms. And I am on my way to chapel, to gather with my Sisters as part of the Body of Christ, to chant the ancient Psalms, and to remember in prayer all who, on this Monday morning, are suffering, weeping, thirsting… To pray for those throughout the world who are without bread, without jam, without home or family, who are exhausted from trying to survive through the powerful storms of life.