I wanted to get a quick update out while I still can 🙂
I have just returned to St. Norbert Abbey after a 5 day silent retreat at Monte Alverno Retreat center in Appleton. It was a wonderful time of silence, sleep, prayer and some spiritual direction from the Capuchin Friars who run the retreat house. My director was trained in the Ignatian Retreat ‘style’ and so I found myself on a mini-Ignatian retreat. Scripture has never sounded so good!
I found myself going into the retreat feeling rather intimidated by the silence and not really knowing how I would be able to last being silent for so long, but it seemed as soon as I started the retreat silence came easily. I preferred silence, actually! As I told my retreat director when we were reviewing the retreat together yesterday, “I didn’t think I would be such a good contemplative.”
Now, back to St. Norbert Abbey to do some laundry and have a quiet day before my vestition tomorrow. Then on Saturday morning I make the move down to Chicago. This first year of Novitiate, the canonical year, is a time of quiet and introspection. It’s about getting to know yourself, the Order, and God and seeing how you all fit into the picture. The first three months, especially, are challenging. Called ‘the Hermitage” period, I will have limited access to public outlets of information. So my writings may be few and far between, but I will write whenever possible.
So, until then, please pray for me and my classmate Jacob that we may find Novitiate to be rewarding and prayerful.
Sts. Norbert and Augustine, pray for us.
(Almost Frater) Brad