Monday, May 30, 2011

Time to catch up...

Hey friends, it's time to catch up on all the stuff that's been going on with me in the last month!

Mission Mini Marathon: Accomplished!

With the grace of perseverence in my training, I was able to participate in and complete my first half-marathon on May 7th. I began the weekend in a somber way, with the funeral of my friend Edgar. Then I was honored to server at the Mass for Vocations at St. John's in downtown Indy. I carb-loaded at the Race for Vocations pasta dinner, stressed about where we would park Saturday morning, and went to bed way too late.

Nonetheless, I felt great Saturday morning and even though my plans for parking didn't work out and it took forever (it seemed) to get to a Port-a-John before the race started, I made it to my starting corral and was even able to start the race with a few fellow Race-for-Vocations runners. I ran a conservative race and finished in 2:11, about a 10 min/mile pace. As you can see by the post-race picture, I had something left in the tank. Next year (and I mean that!), I plan on running in well under two hours.

Mission: Semester Completion - Accomplished!

It was "no rest for the weary" as I was immediately back to the seminary after the Mini to finish up the final week of the semester. I had papers to write and finals to take, and then I had to move completely out of my room, all in seven days. My Trinity final provided the most daunting challenge as I endured a monumental spiritual battle the entire day. Satan felt it necessary to taunt me all day long, saying "You can't do this." when I knew I could. It took just about all that I had to get through it, but with God's grace I completed it and the rest of my work in time to get moved out.

Saying goodbye is difficult and I find that with the whirlwind of activity at the end of each semester that I never do it well. I just hope that all of the guys know that I will miss them and that I pray for them regularly.

Mission: Chillax - Accomplished!

After getting moved out of the seminary, I spent a few days in Carmel visiting friends and then made my way up to J-town to hang with my family for a week. I did get some definite relaxing in, but also spent a lot of time running around and taking care of maintainance things for my car.

Two of my friends from high school, Joe and Jake, and spent the better part of a day at the National Restaraunt Association trade show at the McCormick place in Chicago. Imagine walking around a convention center, and doing nothing but sampling different gormet foods all day and you get an idea of what it was like, and why it was worth the price of admission.

The best part, however, was spending time with my parents, sisters, and niece and nephew. The kiddos have grown not only to remember me, but to miss me when I'm gone and so it is always a special treat for them and for me when I can visit.

Mission: Ordination - Counting down...

After returning from J-town, I moved into my summer parish in Anderson, IN. I will be helping Fr. Bob at both St. Mary's and St. Ambrose parishes this summer. I spent a couple of days getting settled in, then promptly jetted off to Cincinnati to witness the final oath of my classmates, Aaron and Crispine, in the Glenmary Home Missioners. It was a beautiful ceremony and as a bonus, I got to see some of the folks from the seminary and give them a proper goodbye.

Now, the countdown is in full swing. I have five days until ordination day and I plan on taking a lot of time to pray and to reflect on this journey so that I am prepared to participate fully and consciously in the ordination. Thank you to all who have prayed so generously for me throughout these past five years. Please continue to pray for me and my brothers who will be ordained with me, Travis Stephens and Sam Futrals, as we make our final preparations to be ordained this coming Saturday (June 4th).

Look for a post soon after!

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