Friday, January 11, 2008

Vocation Retreat at the Russian River - Female

This year, for the first time, the District is sponsoring a vocation discernment retreat for high school senior girls. As I type, I am at the Russian River lodge that the District uses for events such as this. The thirteen seniors and one junior who are here are currently on a break. In a couple of minutes we'll resume the discussion of how they see their futures, their balancing of faith, service, and community, and the kinds of vocations that are possible for them.

Later this evening, Br. James Joost and myself will speak about our vocation discernment experience, and the evening will close with a showing of the story of Dorothy Day -> Entertaining Angels. The point of the retreat is provide a context for their consideration of "vocation" in their lives, including possible religious vocations.

I've just arrived here at the RR because I was asked to give a short presentation this morning at De La Salle High School in Concord on the History / Mission / Spirituality of the Brothers. They gave me 15 minutes, which I lengthened to 20-25 minutes. This was a retreat day for the combined faculties of Carondelet High School and DLS. They had not done something like this before, and it seemed to move along very smoothly. There was a Sr. Joanne who spoke about the CSJ charism, and then I spoke briefly about our own, giving out several handouts with further information. While it was a challenge to condense everything down to just a few minutes, it was also a good thing... Public speaking trainers often ask their trainees to prepare a 10-minutes talk and then at the last minute tell them to reduce it to 30 seconds. It's a great way to be "on" and to think on your feet.

Lastly, tomorrow we will have the funeral of Br. Columban, the 93-year-old organist, former Director, former Principal, and very respected "institution" in the District. We're expecting two bishops and over 200 people for his funeral. It's a big thing. Columban was a terrific person in lots of ways. More later.