Monday, November 05, 2007

of arrivals and a pilgrimage

The wait is over and long gone!

The chicks arrived Friday morning, not as early as I'd hoped, but they arrived none-the-less. Only 2 were well passed on when we opened the box and we've lost 2 more since. The hatchery always sends a couple extra so we are still at 48. Last year I don't think I took a picture of the tiny box they arrived in so I decided to take a picture this year. The box is bigger this year but still it's amazing to think that there are50 chicks in this box.
I still feel so new at this and wonder if I'm doing things right and pray that they survive my uneducated attempts at caring for them. There seems to always be something new that comes up and makes me wonder what to do. "I don't remember THAT before! Is that normal?"

Most Holy St. Brigid, please pray until God for our farm.

I just had to add these pictures of Mina and Killick. She is growing SO FAST! She is 13 weeks tomorrow. She is no longer smaller than his head.

Friday at 10:50 I set sail on Ferry from Kingston to Edmonds. We picked up Liz and 8 of us headed to St. John the Forerunner Monastery to meet up with 15+ more ladies from St. Paul Orthodox Church. We arrived just at the start of Vespers Friday evening.
It was a very wonderful, peaceful, lovely time. Gerontissa (Abbess of the monastery) spoke to us on Saturday morning. I felt as if she was speaking directly to me. I'm sure many of the ladies felt the same way.
Someone who couldn't go with us, asked if I'd blog about what Gerontissa had to say. This is basically what I took away from it.
She began by saying we, more than they, know how our world is becoming more and more of a distraction. Our world is trying harder and harder to pull us further away from God. Our only defense is prayer. PRAY to keep our children close to God. It is the FIRST thing we should do...not as a last resort.
1. Turn to God
2. Show our children BY EXAMPLE! (Oh, Lord have mercy on me.)
3. Speak to our children with discernment.

Increase your prayer and spiritual life so we have strength and ability to help our children.
The more you pray the more your desire for prayer will grow.
Easiest method of prayer is the Jesus Prayer.
The evil one will do ANYTHING to distract us from prayer. He makes us feel tired, makes us discontented ("I just need to get out of here."). Be watchful.
The more unguarded you are the more you "dark" you will feel.
If you want to progress in prayer you must be more diligent to avoid the distractions of the world.

She had a Q&A time and someone asked her why they pray at night and whether or not this was something a lay person should do.
Darkness, quiet, peacefulness makes it easier to pray at night. We all have duties during the day even the sisters that pull us away from prayer. It's easier at night. It is not just for monastics. Whenever Jesus went to pray it was always at night. He was not leading His example for monastics. There were no monastics.

I wish I would have taken better notes. It was a very wonderful time listening to her. She was encouraging and full of love and empathy of us who must live in the world. For those of us who are bombarded on a daily basis by distractions of the world.

I also must add to this that not only did I have a very real learning experience with Gerontissa but I had a very much needed laugh therapy as well with my sisters in Christ. There were several of us that stayed up and chatted on Saturday evening (thankfully we were blessed with an extra hour as clocks bounced back an hour that night). We laughed and chatted, chatted and laughed. Joking, teasing, sharing, bonding. I want to thank all of you who had a part in really making that evening very special for me (IF you read this anyway).
It was truly a joy to be with all of you...I do miss seeing you on a regular basis and hope we can do it again some day soon.

Here are a couple pictures from that weekend. The first is a walk through the woods as we made our way to the cemetery at the monastery where we prayed the Akathist hymn for the departed at Fr. Thomas' grave. It was truly beautiful.
The other was just looking out into the woods and sunshine. I just liked it.


Mimi said...

It sounds wonderful! I'm sorry you lost a couple of chicks, but glad things are going well with the bulk of them!

Michelle Melania said...

It sounds like an exciting time for you all. I hope the rest of the chicks do well.

Bluecanopy said...

i'm really glad you shared about what you learned. needed that.