Saturday, February 21, 2009

A Trip To The Seminary

Today my wife and I drove to Indianapolis to visit my son and attend "Parent's Day". Nick is in his second year of attending the seminary and he will graduate from college this coming summer. One of the changes for the seminarians this year was moving into a monastery that formerly housed a community of Carmelite nuns. These type of nuns traditionally live very austere lives. Generations of Carmelite nuns are now spinning in their graves because of this change. The monastery is very simple and austere and it reflects the lifestyle of its previous occupants. It has a medieval, castle like ambiance. Nick's room is eight feet by eight feet and has an arched wooden door that leads out into what was formerly the nun's cloister. The entire monastery seems designed for nuns no taller than four feet high. Yes, my son and the other 16 seminarians are studying to be priests. They are generally a great group of young men. However, the reality is that they are a group of very normal, college age, guys. They are not Carmelite nuns. Today started off with a mass celebrated by the Archbishop of Indianapolis and a group of priests. Also in attendance were most of the parents of the seminarians. My son, Nick, gave a talk to the group. He did a great job and I was very proud of him and the things he said. It was the first time I had ever seen Nick do public speaking. During the mass I found myself thinking of my Dad. One week ago, at the very same time, we were having Dad's funeral mass. Afterwards, we had a brunch and tour of the monastery. It was a very enjoyable day until it was time to drive home. At some point in the morning it started to snow. By the time we left I had to clean off the car. The entire way home was in near whiteout conditions with limited visibility. The drive home was work. Turn the windshield wipers on. Turn the windshield wipers off. Run them full blast. Adjust them to the delay mode. Get blown off the highway and blinded by eighteen wheelers flying past you. By the time I got home I was weary and stressed. Still, it was all worth it and I had a great day.

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