Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Two surprises...

First: I completed a "reader's theater" performance of Shakespeare's Richard II this past weekend. One of the monks (Fr. Gavin Barnes, OSB) directed eight of us seminarians in a performance where we dramatically read the play, instead of acting it out fully. This format seems to be perfect for the seminary setting because it allows us to engage the material and perform it ably without demanding a lot of time or adding a lot of stress to our schedules (we only rehearsed six times for two hours each before performing it). Also, the format is an introvert's dream. He can be "on stage" (it really wasn't a stage) in front of a lot of people and never know they were there because his face is always buried in the book with his lines in it :)

I was a little surprised to be cast as Richard, but I trusted what Fr. Gavin thought of my ability and tried to do my best. I really gave it my all and many people commented about how surprised they were by how good I was. At first no one believed that I had not had any prior theatrical performance experience. I guess I surprised myself at my hidden talent :) I had a lot of fun doing the show and I hope to do other performances in the future. (here's a picture of the cast)

Second: A couple of weeks ago, I ran the Trinity Free Clinic 5K at my home parish in Carmel. It really wasn't a planned thing, but I happened to be home at the parish that weekend and so I decided to run it. I had never run a 5K race before and was happy to finish. I finished 110th of 307 and my time was 27:23.8. After I finished the race, Carl, a fellow seminarian at Saint Meinrad from the diocese of Pueblo, Colorado, said "ok, now you've finished your first race, it's time to sign up for the mini" (meaning the Indianapolis Mini-marathon that happens in May each year). My initial reaction was to say "No way!" but then Carl reminded me of the "Race for Vocations," a project started a couple of years ago by a priest of the Archdiocese of Indianapolis. The Race for Vocations is basically a team of runners who sign up to run the mini and offer up all of their training as a sacrifice of prayer for an increase of vocations to the priesthood and religious life. The runners get sponsors to pray with them through their training as a way of promoting vocations awareness in their communities. Finally, the runners wear "Race for Vocations" shirts in the mini to promote vocations awareness in the midst of such a huge public event.

Showing that I could pretty easily pick up and run a 5K with little preparation made me pretty sure that with training I could run the mini next year. Then I realized that the only reason that I wouldn't run the mini would be that I just didn't want to do it (or, possibly, that I was afraid that I couldn't do it). It didn't take much for me to be convinced that this should be something that I should try at least once in my life, and with the Race for Vocations I would have a positive motivation to train. I prayed about it for about a week and couldn't shake the idea, so yesterday I registered for the mini and as a member of the Race for Vocations team (...what have I done?!?!).

I forget how it works exactly, but if you are willing to "sponsor" me in this endeavor (which means you would pray with me for vocations as I train), please let me know. Or, if you just want to pray for me as I train, that would help, too :)

Really, though, I find myself surprising myself a lot lately... in good ways. I guess that means that formation must be working! Blessed Pier Giorgio Frassati, pray for (me) us!

P.S. I think this would be an appropriate endeavor to adopt Bl. Pier Giorgio's motto for: Verso l'alto!


  1. Hello Dominic,

    Danielle mentioned that she spoke to you after Mass a few weeks ago. Sorry that I missed you. I guess you were in town for the race. Glad to know that you're doing well and continue to heal. Thank you for all of your prayers for us over the past year. Know that you are in our prayers too.

    God Bless,
    Michael L

  2. Congratulations on such a great victory! Much luck to you on your goal of running the mini.
    Peace to you.