This week in Madonna House was made up of a backdrop of ordinary life with some un-ordinary events looming in the foreground.
The directors’ meetings are ongoing (they wrap up later this week), and so we all continue to enjoy having the directors of our various mission houses around. While this is not a format in which I can discuss the meetings themselves (I am an attendee at them), they are proving to be a rich time of sharing our life and the work of the Holy Spirit among us in the year 2016. God is good.
Last Thursday quite a few of us (I didn’t get a count, but it must have been over twenty) went to the March for Life in Ottawa to bear witness to the evil of abortion. As those who have been on this March, or the much larger one in the States, know very well, it was a long and very full day, but very blessed. Several of us went to the Rose Dinner in the evening where we had the opportunity to listen to Obianuju Ekeocha, about whom you can read at the link. She was fantastic, and gave a strong encouragement to Canada to reclaim its moral voice in the world by defending the human rights of its weakest and most vulnerable members.
Besides that, the other outstanding event was the feast of Pentecost, which we celebrated with the Divine Liturgy of the Christian East, followed by a festive brunch. We received our ‘Pentecost gifts’ at that meal—this is a very old custom at MH where each person receives a gift and a fruit of the Holy Spirit on a nicely decorated piece of paper. I received wisdom and peace this year, for example.
In the afternoon we had a picnic which we try to do each year when the directors are all here, usually around our May 17 foundation day.
It was a bit amusing this year—several people had prayed for a day without black flies, the early spring scourge of all outdoor activities. Well, their prayers were answered all right—we had snow instead! But if you think that prevented us from having a great picnic, then I guess you just don’t know MH that well.
Sports were played. People sat around the camp fire. For the less hardy, there were card games and other recreational activities in the house. Some MH people looooooove to dance (I, uh…, am not among them) and so there was a bit of dancing going on somewhere or other (yeah, I am definitely not a dancer).
The picnic (which included a hamburger and hot dog supper, and home made ice cream for dessert) went on well into the evening with music and fun—it was basically just a great day to be together.
All of this went on against a backdrop of ordinary life—the gardens are busy, snow or no snow. The men are hard at work on the various building projects that dominate their lives right now. The women keep everyone fed and watered and clean and tidy. And we all lift up our hearts in prayer and intercession for all of you and for our troubled world in all the works of our hands.