The weather and the landscape have finally turned autumnal these last couple of weeks. Nearly all the leaves have drifted to the ground. Grey and brown are now more prominent in our views.
This past week, Brothers Robert James, our Superior, and Luc came back from their three-week visit to our house in Santa Barbara. They helped gather and pack those belongings that are now being moved to West Park. They also helped prepare those items that are donated to various religious and not-for-profit organizations. They are now in quarantine for a couple of weeks. Br. Luc preached for the feast of Christ the King. You can hear him and/or read him on our Sermons Blog.
On Wednesday and Thursday, I spent most of my time providing spiritual direction to students and faculty at New York's General Theological Seminary (via Zoom). I am reassured that I can satisfactorily start new direction relationships on the Zoom platform. I'd still prefer to see people on campus but on-line spiritual direction will have to do for a while longer. Br. Robert Leo is seeing folks at Yale Divinity School in the same way.
I find myself checking out more ships that anchor by our monastery on the Hudson. There are a number of ship tracking websites. You can get free access to some information (the detailed stuff requires a paying subscription). Most of the ships that come by us are New York harbor barges pushed by their tugboat or bulker carrier ships that can come from anywhere on the planet. Leisure traffic on the river has essentially discontinued by now although the Rip Van Winkle tour boat sailing out of Kingston still comes around at weekends.
The Middle House roof renovation work is continuing to progress. The hope is that it can be completed before the winter weather is upon us. Expoloratory work continues with an aim to alleviate the water infiltrations in our belltower. One of three lines of investigation is how water that seeps into our church basement saturates the belltower wall with water by upwards capillarity. We are moving towards having fully-informed quotes on all three aspects of work (basement, tower inside, tower outside).
Now that the brothers do our own cleaning work, Saturdays see a lot of going and coming with pails, mops and brooms. We each have our assigned areas to clean. I've gotten more effective at my cleaning duties and actually enjoy the manual labor it provides me for a change.
Stay safe, stay healthy, wear a mask, save lives!