Whew, glad this is a holiday!
The silence over the weekend, which is when I normally do most of my posting, is for several reasons. It was an absolutely crazy weekend!
Friday, new brochures for the High School Discernment Day came in and needed to be dropped off at the seminary. The evening hours were spent tieing up loose ends for the rest of the weekend.
Saturday, Daily Mass at the Cathedral at 11:30, followed by confessions from noon to 1:30. Thanks to Fr. Snodgrass, who covered the last 45 minutes for me so that I could get a bite to eat. By around 2:00, I trudged my way over in the snow to the Hyatt Regency for the Marriage Renewal Day, sponsored by Regnum Christi. I was to give a talk entitled: "Family, the Seedbed of Vocations," which I had shamelessly ripped off from this past years Diocesan Vocation Director Conference in Minneapolis. Initial reports were well received, stay tuned the talk will likely be posted by the end of the day tomorrow. Shortly after the talk was finished, I headed out to Higher Ground for VisiRetreat, a high school retreat attended this year by 72 students, and led by 20 some college alums of the retreat. The Mass for the retreat is one of my favorites all year. Can you believe it, 80 some teenagers SINGING and RESPONDING!!!! The room shakes! After Mass was a talk by Kurt Oblinger, a student at University of Dayton, on his recovery from a heart transplant, very powerful! (We wished another heart transplant survivor would be there, but Sean has not yet returned to the Nati.) I made it home at about midnight, and had to sit down to relax before bed.
Sunday, up at around 5:30 to leave at 6:30 for Russell's Point, Ohio, and St. Mary's of the Woods Parish, (or Indian Lake for the un-initiated.) Seminarian Matt Lee went along for the ride as we had a Vocations presentation to the Altar Boys (not servers, as there are only boys there, and Karen treats it as a priesthood recruitment tool.) We made it there for the 9:00 AM presentation, which Matt handled for the most part, as it is his home parish. We skipped out of the 10:30 parish Mass and went to breakfast instead. After killing time by driving around the lake (which looked positively like the Tundra!), we made our way to the Marianist House on Governor's Island for a pre-Confirmation retreat. Twenty high schoolers are making their preparation for this final Sacrament of Initiation in a few months. They were extremely attentive and supportive to what I was saying, and we closed off the day with the Celebration of Mass in the little Marianist Chapel. Instead of driving home, we crashed at my parent's place in Botkins.
Monday, slept in a bit this morning before making our way to meet with some of my classmates for lunch in West Chester. I had the 4:30 confessions and 5:15 Mass today, with about 40 people in attendance at the Cathedral (pretty good, for us!) Afterwards, the other two Fathers and I tried out the new Sully's Tavern where Redfish used to be downtown, the Fish and Chips were very edible.
So, now, I am sitting at my computer, trying to come up with something for tomorrow and the beginning of Lent on Wednesday. All the while, I'm thinking about the pillow that will soon be near.