First, let me say you have been in our thoughts and prayers throughout this tragedy of the coronavirus pandemic. We hope and pray you and your families are doing well in spite of all the limitations this pandemic has presented. We pray that somehow, blessings will be creeping in, for as St. Paul says, “For those who love God all things work to the good” (Rom 8: 28).
We miss you all terribly. It is hard to see empty pews in our Sacred Heart chapel, the dining room without plates filled with delicious food and the hum of animated conversations and, of course, the silence in our conference rooms, but most of all, your smiling faces.
Mother Boniface Spirituality Center is, as all spirituality centers are, deeply committed to accompanying people in their spiritual growth, their life in Christ. This can be challenging in a difficult time such as the one we are living through now. As we practice “shelter in place” and “social distancing” we at MBSC are experiencing new ways to be with people who have been a part of our various retreats and groups.
Sister Sara had scheduled a Lenten Bible Study on the Passion Psalms. Shortly thereafter, it was canceled because of the Coronavirus restrictions. Sister Sara created an online presentation of the program in the hope that some people would be interested in joining us virtually for the program. We were so impressed with the numbers of people we reached with the online program with more than 50 views in just over 48 hours and many more throughout the Lenten season. If you would like to view it now, please click on this link for the PASSION PSALMS. Sister Sara then produced wonderful five-week Easter Bible Study series focused on the theme of “Discipleship in the First Letter of St. Peter”. The entire five session series is still available using this link to the EASTER BIBLE STUDY.
Laura Endara Mantilla, our Hispanic Ministry staff person, has continued to meet with her Bible Study group. She is also meeting with the MOMS group, a group which has given mothers with small children an opportunity to meet, pray together and support one another. She is doing catechesis for young children, often using puppets as the MOMS are taking time for prayer and reflection. Laura has also offered mini retreats and has been able to meet with and pray with individuals, all of this on Zoom!
Sr. Gerry has also been able to continue to meet with people for spiritual direction on the telephone. This is helpful to many since not everyone is a “techy” or even has a computer.
Sr. Mary Kay continues to meet with the Ladies of Charity of Norristown and other groups she has been working with on Zoom offering weekly Lectio Divina on the upcoming Sunday readings as well as individual meetings.
By the way, we are also busy getting the Center in shape for your return, cleaning out our closets, checking all our equipment and our maintenance staff are sprucing it up with fresh paint. Check out the picture! Don’t worry, the beautiful plants are still thriving.
We MSBTs have great devotion to the Holy Spirit. During this time of the pandemic we are praying the Novena to the Holy Spirit daily for intentions related specifically to the Coronavirus. We invited you to pray along with us. You can see and hear this prayer by clicking on this link to the NOVENA. If you would like a hard copy of the Novena mailed out to you, please email your request, along with your mailing address, to Sr. Mary Kay at firstname.lastname@example.org.
If you have any ideas of how we can serve you during this time please let us know in the comments or at the above email address.
Meanwhile, let’s pray for one another and remind ourselves of the words in Isaiah, “I will not forget you, I have carved you on the palm of my hand” (49:16). Also, “It is the LORD who goes before you; he will be with you and will never fail you or forsake you. So do not fear or be dismayed.” (Dt. 31:8), and, of course, Jesus’ own promise, “I am with you always, until the end of the age” (Mt 28:20).
We are not alone. Our God is with us and we all count on one another’s prayers and support.
This too will pass. As for MBSC, we trust that one day in the not too distant future the pews in Sacred Heart Chapel will be filled, the aroma of delicious food and lively conversation will flow from our dining room, our conference rooms will again be filled with the wisdom of the presenters, as well as the participants, and retreat titles and room lists will again go up on our elevator wall!
God bless you all and may Mary our Mother accompany you in all you are about.