A Rag-Bag Post
30/September/2008 Filed in: Jottings
We have a strict rule in community, that this web site and blog receive attention only when other duties have been attended to. No wonder, then, that there have been a few blank days and the weekly podcast is likely to appear mid-week. What have we been up to? There have been two books to see through the press; some audio books to record and send out; shopping, gardening, cooking, cleaning and minor household repairs to deal with (isn't it always the way that minor repairs, once tackled, have a habit of becoming major undertakings?); visitors to welcome; accounts to be written up; committee meetings to attend; letters and emails to reply to; and the daily round of prayer and observance to maintain. It doesn't sound like much, put like that, does it? But that is what monastic life is like most of the time: ordinary and humdrum in much of its detail. There are occasional surprises. Yesterday we received an invitation to take part in one of Gordon Ramsey's "Cookalong" T.V. programmes. For one moment I had a vision of G.R. and camera crew trying to squeeze into our not-very-big kitchen and the great man being put out of countenance by our indifference to his famously expletive-ridden language. Good T.V. perhaps, but not necessarily good monasticism. Today we remember St Jerome, a curmudgeon with a soft spot for nuns (good), a tremendous love of holy scripture (better) and, despite all the truculence and violence of his opinions, an immense love of God and neighbour (best of all). His memoria reminds me that we still have not decided when we are going to adapt the revised Latin psalter in choir, a decision we have been contemplating for at least five years. All we have to do is find time for a chapter meeting . . .