So now for Thursday - Sunday.
Thursday is our Ministry Day. We all split up for an experience at different ministry sites that have been made available to us. We prayer in the morning and then go on our own. Bridget helps out at Mary's Kitchen. Andrea is an assistant in the 2nd grade room at St. Joseph School. Karen and Lynn speak with kids in Juvenile Hall. Julie and Thuy are at the L'Arche community. Lastly, Melissa and myself are at Thomas House. I'll do a post one day just about Thomas House but all the ministry sites were explained in a previous post titled "Transitioning and Re-orientating Myself". Many of our ministries occur after lunch, like for Melissa and I, we get to Thomas House around 2pm and leave around 8. That leaves a good amount of the day before hand to catch up on things. I usually spend that time writing my weekly reflection paper (all of ours are due on Sunday)talking about what we took away from the class that week. I also catch up on reading material, emails and letters, go to Mass, lunch and then it's about time to go. In the past when novices got back from their ministries on Thursday nights, they would get together for prayer that evening and sharing Theological Reflections. This year has been a bit different since many of us get back late and wouldn't have sufficient time to reflect and get the written portion done. So we do this sharing on Friday night after dinner.
For those of you that are wondering what Theological Reflection is, this is the breakdown we use:
1. Story: Share a story of an experience that took place during your ministry experience that day
2. Charism/Scripture Relation: Connect your story to a Scripture passage or a quote that expresses the CSSJ charism - such as something that you may have learned in class
3. Image/Symbol: a representation of this event that may come during prayer
4. Call: What is God calling me to personally? How can I apply this lesson in my own life/prayer life?
Friday is our prayer day. It's a day of silence until the evening meal that we share together. We are free to spend our day with God wherever we find the Spirit's direction. Today I spent my morning reading and journaling, reflecting on some of the events of the week. I went to Mass at 11 and ate lunch outside. I had planned to go to the beach to be with the waves but decided to stick close to home, I sat outside for quite a while, went to the pool, looked over the daily readings again and continued reading a good that I started awhile ago "The Feminine Face of God" to name a few things. We ate together at about 5:30 and shared our Theological Reflections. Usually the night is free on Friday but tonight John Dear, the Jesuit peace activist was at the Center for Spiritual Development and a group of us went to hear him speak. Sometimes speeches like that make you feel so small!
Saturday is a self-care day. This is when I choose to do my charge, my laundry, and any shopping that I have to do. Usually, Andrea and I go to Mass at 5 at St. Norbert's which is 15 minutes away. I thought it a good idea to get an outside experience of church community while in the novitiate which is at times closed in. Helps me remember that there are other believers out there and maintain that connection.
Sunday is usually a free day until dinner. We share dinner together and afterward have Sharing the State of the Heart together weekly.
So I hope this gives you a glimpse into the novitiate weekly life. You can count on us doing these things week in and week out. Usually my posts from now on will pick out a certain happening from class or ministry or else pick something that's happened out of the ordinary to keep you up to date.
Thanks to all of you who read this. I know that some post comments, others don't but I thank you for your interest and most of all your thoughts and prayers!!