Thursday, November 29, 2012

Sister in "hot water"

Sister in "hot water"  not your normal evening in the monastery! You never know when you will need to take apart a shower handle to turn the water off while it is running.

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

The light of world

Pre Christmas, We decorated the Robertshaw B&B a little early so more people are able to enjoy it. The use of lights at Christmas time is a symbol of Christ  as the new light of the world.

Monday, November 26, 2012

0 My Bride, My Beloved:


0 My Bride, My Beloved:

I have betrothed thee unto Myself. Yea, I have given thee a special token of our relationship and our future union, for I have sealed thee with My precious Holy Spirit; and ye shall be - Mine, saith the Lord, in that day when I make up My jewels, and ye shall be as a diadem upon My brow, yea, My crowning glory.

For I shall reign over kings and nations and peoples, yea, I shall be ruler over all the earth; but ye shall have a special place of honor, for thou art My prize possession. As it is written, having shared My agony, ye shall that day share My glory; having born for Me the cross, ye shall then share with Me the throne. (Know ye not ye shall even judge angels?)

Rejoice now, that ye have been chosen out and counted worthy to suffer for My sake. We share one common destiny, and we walk one single path. At this present time, it may hold sorrow and iso­lation; but cheer thine heart with the raptures that lie ahead. Some live now in the revelries and riches of this present world who shall that day be mourners and paupers. Will ye exchange places? Would ye desert Me now and be rejected then? Would ye ignore Me now, and be in that day rejected by Me?

Nay, ye would not! Rather, ye will do as Paul: ye will glory in the midst of suffering and affliction, because ye know these things shall in that day be counter-balanced by an exceedingly greater portion of joy. (weight of glory)
                                                                                      Frances J. Roberts, Come Away My Beloved

Sunday, November 25, 2012

Christ the King

The Solemnity of Christ the King

How have we let Christ be the King in our lives?

Responsorial Psalm Ps 93:1, 1-2, 5

R. (1a) The LORD is king; he is robed in majesty.
The LORD is king, in splendor robed;
robed is the LORD and girt about with strength.
R. The LORD is king; he is robed in majesty.
And he has made the world firm,
not to be moved.
Your throne stands firm from of old;
from everlasting you are, O LORD.
R. The LORD is king; he is robed in majesty.
Your decrees are worthy of trust indeed;
holiness befits your house,
O LORD, for length of days.
R. The LORD is king; he is robed in majesty.

Saturday, November 24, 2012


Virtues are formed by prayer.
Prayer preserves temperance.
Prayer suppresses anger.
Prayer prevents emotions of pride and envy.
Prayer draws into the soul the Holy Spirit,
and raises man to Heaven.

~ St. Ephraem

Thanksgiving Week, Prayers

Last Supper Table, Corpus Christi 2012
Giving thanks for your friends, family
and those who you don't even know, who hold you up in prayer.
We pray for all your intentions every day.
Come Give Thanks.......

Friday, November 23, 2012

What the Benedictine Nuns are thankful for...

Our Monastic life, this is the profession candle of one of our founding sisters,  
Sr. Gaudentia, and her wreath they are both given to the sister at Solemn Vows.

This represents the ministry of hospitality that we offer to all who come.

 The Liturgy of the Hours that we pray in common six time a day. We offer up the official prayer of the Church. This is the center of our life.

The Eucharist, what else could we be most thankful for.... The Body and Blood of our Lord and Saviour
The Holy Gospel, the words of God spoken to us for us to center our life on God.

St. Benedict, who we follow in his footsteps that he laid down for us in his Holy Rule.

The Cross, what we must pickup and follow Christ who laid down his life for us on.

This display is on the steps in front of the Tabernacle. These are the building blocks that we Benedictine Nuns use to strengthen our relationship and union with God.

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Thanksgiving day in the monastery

We start off the day giving thanks to God for all that He has done for us.

Then there is the challenge of the turkey! We were given a wonderful donation of a 30 lb bird! We are going to see who will win the challenge of the bird. More to come....

Thanksgiving day in the monastery part 2...

4:00 am... Nun 1 Turkey 0
no... This is not my normal time to get up....  so maybe it should be Nun 0 Turkey 1...
but the bird is taking a warm nap :-)

Presentation of Mary

Let us give thanks to God for the gift of Mary as our mother.
As Mary was brought to the Temple we are called to do the same. We follow the wonderful and perfect example of Mary. She offered her whole life to God and we are to follow in her footsteps.
What is our offering that we present to God on the altar of are heart each day?

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Thanksgiving Week

Thanks be to God for all that He has done for us.
He must have fun making all the beautiful trees for us to enjoy.
How often have we thanked God for the beauty of each day?

Monday, November 19, 2012

Thanksgiving Day Week

Thanksgiving Day week
What are we truly thankful for in our lives.....
How have you expressed your gratitude to God?

Sunday, November 18, 2012

You will show me the path to life...

"Learn a lesson from the fig tree.
When its branch becomes tender and sprouts leaves,
you know that summer is near."

33rd Sunday of Ordinary Time

Responsorial Psalm Ps 16:5, 8, 9-10, 11

R. (1) You are my inheritance, O Lord!
O LORD, my allotted portion and my cup,
you it is who hold fast my lot.
I set the LORD ever before me;
with him at my right hand I shall not be disturbed.
R. You are my inheritance, O Lord!
Therefore my heart is glad and my soul rejoices,
my body, too, abides in confidence;
because you will not abandon my soul to the netherworld,
nor will you suffer your faithful one to undergo corruption.
R. You are my inheritance, O Lord!
You will show me the path to life,
fullness of joys in your presence,
the delights at your right hand forever.
R. You are my inheritance, O Lord!
Thoughts to ponder...
Have I truly set the Lord ever before me?
Have I trusted in the Lord so that I might not be disturbed?
Have I followed the path that He has set before me?
How do these questions affect my vocational discernment?

Saturday, November 17, 2012

St Elizabeth of Hungary

[Saint Elizabeth of Hungary]

May we see Christ in all we do.

Collect for her feast day
O God, by whose gift Saint Elizabeth of Hungary
recognized and revered Christ in the poor,
grant, through her intercession,
that we may serve with unfailing charity
the needy and those afflicted.
Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
one God, for ever and ever. +Amen.

Friday, November 16, 2012

St. Gertrude the Great

Eternal Father, I offer Thee the most Precious Blood of Thy Divine Son, Jesus Christ, in union with the Masses said throughout the world today, for all the Holy Souls in Purgatory, for sinners everywhere, for sinners in the Universal Church, for those in my own home and within my family. Amen.
~St. Gertrude
"God and the salvation of souls - this was the one object of her life, the one end of every action. From her humility, she had fully persuaded herself that the marvelous graces bestowed on her were given her for others. This holy delusion served two important ends - it saved her from every temptation to spiritual complacence, and it induced her to impart freely to others a knowledge if the revelations and other favors bestowed in her. She was simply according to her own idea, a channel of divine grace to others; and believing this to be her end, she neither spared time nor labor for its accomplishment. Often her rest was shortened and her food forgotten when souls demanded tome or anxious thought. "Not satisfied with even this, she often deprived herself of the sweetness of contemplation when it was necessary to succor the tempted, to console the afflicted, or, what she desired above all else, to enkindle and increase the fire of divine love in any soul. For as iron, when placed in the fire, becomes itself like fire, thus this virgin, burning with love, seemed to be all love, such zeal had she for the salvation of all." "
The life and Revelations of St. Gertrude

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Beauty of Prayer

God himself will teach you the art of prayer.
We need no words to teach us how to see, for seeing is a natural faculty.
Neither can we learn from others the beauty of prayer;
 its interior ways are made known to us by God alone,
 who gives to each the necessary knowledge and
bestows the gift of prayer on those who pray.
~St. John Climacus, Ladder of Divine Ascent

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

God's love planted in each of us...

If the love of God has planted deep roots in a person, then he is able to love even those who do not deserve it, as God does us. Fathers and mothers do not love their children only when they deserve love; they always love them, though of course, they make them understand when they are wrong. We learn from God to seek only what is good and never what is evil. We learn to look at each other not only with our eyes, but with the eyes of God, which is the gaze of Jesus Christ. A gaze that begins in the heart and does not stop at the surface, that goes beyond appearances and manages to capture the deepest aspirations of the other: waiting to be heard, for caring attention, in a word: love. But the opposite is also true: that by opening myself to another, just as he or she is, by reaching out, by making myself available, I am also opening myself to know God, to feel that he is there and is good. Love of God and love of neighbour are inseparable and are mutually related. Jesus did not invent one or the other but revealed that they are essentially a single commandment and did so not only through the Word, but especially with his testimony: the person of Jesus and his whole Mystery embody the unity of love of God and neighbour, like the two arms of the Cross, vertical and horizontal. In the Eucharist he gives us this two-fold love, giving himself, because, nourished by this Bread, we love one another as he has loved us.

~ Pope Benedict XVI
Angelus, November 4, 2012

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

On Jesus Alone...

We must pray without tiring,
for the salvation of mankind
does not depend on material success;
nor on sciences that cloud the intellect.
Neither does it depend on arms and human industries,
but on Jesus alone.

~ St. Frances Xavier Cabrini

Saturday, November 10, 2012

Let, then, the life of Mary be as it were virginity itself, set forth in a likeness, from which, as from a mirror, the appearance of chastity and the form of virtue is reflected. From this you may take your pattern of life, showing, as an example, the clear rules of virtue: what you have to correct, to effect, and to hold fast. The first thing which kindles ardour in learning is the greatness of the teacher. What is greater than the Mother of God?

~ Saint Ambrose

Friday, November 9, 2012

I beseech You, most sweet Lord Jesus

I beseech You,
most sweet Lord Jesus,
let Your Passion be to me strength,
to guard me,
protect me,
and defend me;
Your wounds my meat and drink,
to feed me,
inebriate me,
and delight me;
the sprinkling of Your Blood on me
the cleansing away of all faults;
and Your Death my everlasting glory. 
In these be my food,
my rejoicing,
my health,
the sweetness of my heart. 
Who lives and reigns for ever and ever.

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Behold, O good and most sweet Jesus

Behold, o good and most sweet Jesus,
I fall upon my knees before You,
and with most fervent desire
beg and beseech You
that You would impress upon my heart
a lively sense of faith,
hope and charity,
true repentance for my sins,
and a firm resolve to make amends. 
And with deep affection and grief,
I reflect upon Your five wounds,
having before my eyes
that which Your prophet David
spoke about You, O good Jesus
They have pierced my hands and feet,
they have counted all my bones.

Wednesday, November 7, 2012


We are all created in God's image,
but how we reflect God to the world
is according to our unique combination of gifts.

by Sr. Marie Paul Curley, FSP
in See Yourself Through God's Eyes:
52 Meditations to Grow in Self-Esteem

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Hospitality to God

In looking through some of the things I have written over the years to "think out" different things that I was experiencing/thinking or for personal study, I discovered the following reflection.  With this text, written over a half dozen years ago, I share with you some of my own experience of journeying to the Lord.  I pray it will be of a help to you.

            “I’m home.”  These words are uttered by many who pass through the doors of our retreat house and they make a very definite statement.  For those of us who provide a sacred space where people come aside to seek Christ, it is a very humbling reality that we, by our lives, help create a space where people feel at home.  The question then becomes, “What do they personally mean by, ‘I’m home’?”

            Are they perhaps expressing a personal reality of what they experience interiorly in coming aside to spend time with God?  Are they themselves making room in their lives in a radical way to allow God to enter and touch their hearts with His grace, His presence?  Why do they choose to come to a monastic retreat house?  What makes it such a special meeting place with God?

            Having met my monastic community first as a retreatant, I have experienced this reality of being able to say, “I’m home.”  My life was very full with work, family, friends, and activities.  Yet, it was important to me to come aside twice a year for a weekend away from the hustle and bustle of my everyday life. 

            The easiest way to explain it is simply to say that I needed time and a sacred space in which to allow my relationship with God to grow and mature.  Did I realize that I was spending time at a monastery?  No.  Did I realize that the community was welcoming me in as Christ?  Again, no.  However, being a recipient of the community’s hospitality enabled me to experience in an awesome way Christ’s presence.

            What was it I experienced from the Sisters when I came?  Quite simply, warm hospitality.  This hospitality sprung from the community’s welcoming each person as Christ.  One of the Sisters would greet me when I arrived.  There were Sisters in the kitchen and dining room providing a warm, welcoming space where I felt like an honored guest.  But there was still more.  It was something mysterious that made the buildings and grounds holy. 

After a few retreats the mystery was not solved but better understood.  I just was not coming to a retreat house, I was coming to the home of these monastic women to seek God in a deeper way.  I was making space in my heart for God to enter and live -- in short, I was making a home for God in my life.

            Coming to know the monastic community and starting to share in the lives of these women in a different way as a volunteer -- and later vocation guest leading to becoming one of these monastic women -- I discovered a radical way of living.

            This radical way of living is what we Benedictines are called to live by our daily lives.  By making a “home” for Christ in our hearts, we create an atmosphere that others will find welcoming.  What I experience in welcoming Christ into my life, I in turn pass on to those whom I meet:  community members, guests, family and friends, retreatants and even the stranger.  My life becomes a lived witness to Christ and I make Him present to a world searching for something to fill the void.

            The answer to the question of what is meant by “I’m home” has a different meaning for each individual who utters these words. Perhaps one the best images I know of welcoming Christ is Sallman’s Christ at Heart’s Door.  Christ is at the door of each our hearts; coming aside to a sacred space we learn how to open the door and invite Him in. 

Monday, November 5, 2012

One Little Boy's Explanation of God

This story written by an 8-year-old named Danny Dutton, who lives in Chula Vista, CA was forwarded to us.  We thought it well done and thought you would enjoy it, too.  He wrote it for his third grade homework assignment, to 'explain God.' 


'One of God's main jobs is making people. He makes them to replace the ones that die, so there will be enough people to take care of things on earth.  He doesn't make grownups, just babies.  I think because they are smaller and easier to make.  That way he doesn't have to take up his valuable time teaching them to talk and walk.  He can just leave that to mothers and fathers.'
'God's second most important job is listening to prayers. An awful lot of this goes on, since some people, like preachers and things, pray at times beside bedtime.  God doesn't have time to listen to the radio or TV because of this.  Because he hears everything, there must be a terrible lot of noise his ears, unless he has thought of a way to turn it off.'
'God sees everything and hears everything and is everywhere which keeps Him pretty busy.  So you shouldn't go wasting his time by going over your mom and dad's head asking for something they said you couldn't have.'
'Atheists are people who don't believe in God. I don't think there are any in Chula Vista...  At least there aren't any who come to our church.'
'Jesus is God's Son. He used to do all the hard work, like walking on water and performing miracles and trying to teach the people who didn't want to learn about God.  They finally got tired of him preaching to them and they crucified him.  But he was good and kind, like his father, and he told his father that they didn't know what they were doing and to forgive them and God said O.K.'
'His dad (God) appreciated everything that he had done and all his hard work on earth so he told him he didn't have to go out on the road anymore.  He could stay in heaven.  So he did.  And now he helps his dad out by listening to prayers and seeing things which are important for God to take care of and which ones he can take care of himself without having to bother God.  Like a secretary, only more important.'
'You can pray anytime you want and they are sure to help you because they got it worked out so one of them is on duty all the time.'
'You should always go to church on Sunday because it makes God happy, and if there's anybody you want to make happy, it's God!  Don't skip church to do something you think will be more fun like going to the beach.  This is wrong.  And besides the sun doesn't come out at the beach until noon anyway.'

'If you don't believe in God, besides being an atheist, you will be very lonely, because your parents can't go everywhere with you, like to camp, but God can.  It is good to know He's around you when you're scared, in the dark or when you can't swim and you get thrown into real deep water by big kids.'

'But... you shouldn't just always think of what God can do for you.  I figure God put me here and he can take me back anytime he pleases.  And... that's why I believe in God.'

Sunday, November 4, 2012

On Loving God...

Hear, O Israel!
The Lord our God is Lord alone!

You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart,
with all your soul,
with all your mind,
and with all your strength.
(from The Book of Deuteronomy and the Gospel of Luke)

These words from today's first reading and the Gospel are a powerful statement of how our relationship with God should be:  a totality of self.  Not half-hearted.  Not when it's convenient.  Not when I feel like it.  Not when I need something.

Our God is infinitely patient, infinitely generous and extremely merciful.  But, it is up to us to be in relationship with Him.  He won't force us, but He always has His door open waiting for us to turn to Him.

Today take a few moments to ponder how these words of scripture apply to your life, your prayer.  Do you try to be present to Him always?  Do you apply your whole self to your prayer?  Do you allow God total access to your heart?  Your thoughts?  Your actions?

Saturday, November 3, 2012

Faith the size of a mustard seed...

And the apostles said to the Lord, “Increase our faith.”
“If you have faith the size of a mustard seed,
you would say to [this] mulberry tree,
‘Be uprooted and planted in the sea,’
and it would obey you.
(Luke 17:5-6)

Just a few weeks ago we began the Year of Faith proclaimed by our Holy Father, Pope Benedict XVI.  Some scratch their head and say, "That's nice.", but don't do anything to make this year different and special.  

We are blessed to have some many varied ways of learning more about our faith and to grow in an ever deepening relationship with God -- if we choose to.  God is always there, waiting patiently for us to turn to Him.  That's His gift of free will to us.  We need to choose Him. 

The Nicene Creed that we profess each Sunday at Mass is a terrific prayer to meditate upon.  These are the truths that our faith is based upon.  Reading the Catechism of the Catholic Church is also a great way to expand your knowledge about the truths our faith is based on.  Whatever you choose to do, remember If you have faith the size of a mustard seed, you would say to [this] mulberry tree, ‘Be uprooted and planted in the sea,’ and it would obey you. 

Friday, November 2, 2012

A Prayer for All Souls

O God, who willed that your Only Begotten Son,
having conquered death,
should pass over into the realm of heaven,
grant, we pray, to your departed servants
that, with the mortality of this life overcome,
they may gaze eternally on you,
the Creator and Redeemer.
Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with you in the unity ofthe Holy Spirit,
one God, for ever and ever.

Source:  The Roman Missal, Third Mass Option for All Souls Day

Thursday, November 1, 2012

All Saints Hymn

Rejoice with all the saints this day,
Who ran by faith the narrow way.
The great and low together stand
With glory crowned at God's right hand.

How blest are they the Spirit's poor,
Their king is Jesus Christ the Lord,
And all who mourned have found new birth;
The patient meek await the earth.

How blest are those who fought the fight,
God's justice fills their thirst for right.
The pure of heart God's face behold;
The merciful have overflowed.

How blest are those who wrought the peace
As heirs they share the Victor's feast;
And prophets by injustice slain
Have claimed the Kingdom's righteous reign.

Come martyrs red and virgins white,
All teachers wise and students bright,
All wives and husbands, monks and nuns,
With bishops, priests, and deacons, come.

Come holy men and women all
With heart and voice sing praise and call
To Christ who rose triumphantly
That we amy join your company.

Most blest the Father, and the Son.
Most blest the Spirit, Three in One.
Your Kindom come, your will be done.
Your praise forever more be sung.  Amen.

~ Harry Hagan, OSB
in Praying with the Benedictines,
A Window on the Cloister