"Young Religious ought to enter blogs and correct the opinions of the youth, showing them the true Jesus" - Cardinal Camillo Ruini, Vicar for Rome

Thursday, December 31, 2009

Christmas at Our Lady of Solitude

A belated Merry Christmas to you all!  Tonight is New Year's Eve and we are preparing to bring the New Year in at the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass on the Vigil of the Solemnity of Mary, the Mother of God.  We had a beautiful and holy Christmas - enjoying this time of grace, peace, and JOY.  Below is a slide show of photos and a video.  The video is from Midnight Mass - it sometimes loads in slow, so be patient and be sure to persevere through the entire slideshow.  There are 20 photos! 

More construction updates are forthcoming.  Be sure to check back soon...

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Monday, December 21, 2009

And so it continues...

Can you believe it!  YES!  Just as Haydon promised, the Chapel is coming 'out of the ground' by Christmas.  There it is, right before our very eyes.  What you see to the left is the west wall of the Chapel.  It's wonderful to begin to get a visual of how tall it will be - the very tip top of the cross that sits atop the dome will be right at about 70 ft.



Words can't begin to describe our joy!  What will it be like when this beautiful Temple of God is completed?  Our joy will know no bounds. For all of you accompanying us on this 'building pilgrimage of sorts - whether monetarily or spiritually, we know you share our joy.  And this sharing of our joy makes it increase all the more.  This Church will be a place where Christ dwells - waiting for visitors to come to spend time with Him in Adoration.  It will be a true oasis in the desert.  And seeing it take shape brings such HOPE and ANTICIPATION to the heart.  


As Christmas nears - now only days away - please know that all of our benefactors, family, and friends are remembered in our prayers.  And in a special way, in this Year for Priests, our priests hold pride of place in our prayers and intercession.  May the Babe of Bethlehem bless you all...from the arms of His Mother. 



P.S.  A great big CONGRATS to our new novice, Sr. John-Mark Maria of St. Peter the Apostle, who was invested in the Holy Habit on Dec. 12th.  More photos and info is on our home page: www.desertnuns.com

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Nun Run Newz and Building Updates and Advent Hopes

NUN RUN NEWZ - March 20, 2010

OK...everybody get EXCITED!!!!  The nun run is quickly approaching.  Wanna run?  Sign up soon.  The sooner you sign up the sooner you can get your fundraising page - to help raise money for Our Lady of Solitude Building Fund.  You can ask people to sponsor miles or just donate toward your run/walk.  BE CREATIVE.  Don't be shy!  Many people ask us: How can we help?  There are lots of ways. Just get in touch and we can bombard you with good ideas on how you can be involved!  Check out Sr. Augustine's Nun Run Blog for more details

BUILDING UPDATES
They say that a picture speaks a thousand words!  So let me share with you a few photos.  I think the excitement will be tangible as you get a peek at all the good that is going on in beautiful Tonopah, AZ!

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Just in case this collage - which by clicking on it will get larger - didn't speak a thousand words, let me fill you in on some of the Building Update details.  As I sit here clicking away at the computer, 3 of the Sisters are at a construction meeting.  Soon enough, this will be old news and I will have to update this blog again.  Such is the way of it with construction!  OK on to the newz: As you can see from the photos there is LOTS going on.  The footers for the Chapel are in - and what great footers they are :)  As you can see there are mounds of dirt - as the chapel pad is prepared.  Lots of dirt has been moving around the site!  Our 2 Haydon connections: Joe and Steve have been wonderful - keeping us up to date on all the goings on!  By Christmas, more than likely, the Chapel structure will start coming 'out of the ground' so to speak!

ADVENT HOPES
It's a funny thing...this building project!  I find myself getting excited over the most random things.  For instance, I see this hunk of curved steel and my heart thrills: This is going to be in the House of God!  Or I see all that dirt moving, the beautiful land being cleared and made ready - and I think: Rejoice chosen land, upon you will sit a Throne for the King.  Of all the possible places in this world, the Lord chose this out of the way place in the heart of the Arizona desert to establish His Eucharistic Reign.  It's awesome to think of - to become 'synced' (to use ipod lingo) with the Providential Plans of Our Father!  It's the Advent of Our Lady of Solitude Monastery Chapel.  This longing to see what has been promised (in the plans) come to fruition is reaching it's peak as it is made manifest in reality.  This Advent season takes on a whole new meaning for me.  It is a time of longing, hoping, anticipating the fruition of what has been promised: A Savior.  This Advent my heart is longing, hoping, anticipating the fruition of what has been promised: A place for the Savior to lay His Head...a new Home for our God.  Come, Lord, do not delay...


Friday, November 6, 2009

Chili Cook-Off with some of our new neighbors

You never know what each new day will bring. At the end of October, we entered our first chili cook-off - at the invitation of Fr. Billy Kosco - at St. Henry's Catholic Church. Upon moving to Tonopah, we will fall within the parish boundaries of St. Henry's! So we took this opportunity to get to know our new neighbors.

How wonderful it was to meet all of these fantastic people. We were welcomed with open-arms and feel confident that we will find lots of friends out in the West Valley.

Perhaps you are wondering: Well, what about the cook-off? Well, let us fill you in on some of the details. Our chili's name was LIKE NUN OTHER. It was a mild Buffalo Wing Chicken Chili. At the graciousness of the judges, we won the following awards: Best Name, Most Unusual Chili, and People's Choice!

It was a night of great fun and fellowship. We look forward now more than ever to our move to Tonopah. We look forward to getting to know all the West Valley families and anticipate great friendships.

As for the building update: It's coming :O) Please be patient. Since our kick-off construction meeting, things have been so busy. But be of good heart - we've got lots of pictures and lots to share. Hopefully we'll get a chance to do that soon. Till then, know our prayers are with you!

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Transitus of St. Francis

Hello to everyone! Sorry for the long delay in updating the blog. But hopefully it will be worth your wait. Some wonderful things have been happening here - and Sr. Marie St. Paul is going to fill you in on that in a few days (i'll give you a hint: lots of building news)! But for now, we hope you enjoy this slideshow from pics from the Transitus of St. Francis.



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Sunday, August 30, 2009

August activities


Usually the month of August is a time for Phoenicians to escape the heat, but we were blessed with an influx of visitors. Fr. Kline and his good friend, Fr. Dandurand from the Diocese of Toledo, Ohio, came for a week retreat at the beginning of the month. Br. Francis, CFR enjoyed the sites, sounds, and critters of the desert, his first time to the southwest. Fr. Miguel, MFVA, came and gave one of our seminarians John Parks (soon to be ordained to the diaconate on October 31st) a directed retreat. The latter three were able to join us, Bishop Olmsted, Sister Shaun and Sister Sheila (IHM sisters and dear friends to Bishop Olmsted and now us) for Our Holy Mother Clare's Mass and festivities, a joyous day indeed.

We were also privileged to attend the Our Lady of Guadalupe Festival held by the Knights of Columbus that concluded their yearly conference. 20,000 people joined some great speakers in a very special day devoted to Our Lady, the Star of the New Evangelization. The following day, we were able to entrust to Our Lady of Guadalupe all of our special intentions and those who have asked our prayers before the only relic of the Tilma of Our Lady of Guadalupe. It was awesome! (Almost as good as traveling to Mexico City.)

We are still awaiting word on the permits to begin construction of the Chapel. In the meantime, Kathryn Sharpe will be joining our little band of sisters on September 14th, the Feast of the Holy Cross. Please keep her and her family in your prayers. Work is proceeding for the two modular houses that will be built on the site. We are excited at the prospect of moving down to the new property and being able to accept even more vocations! God bless you.

Monday, July 27, 2009

Fr. Mariusz

Happy Feast of Our Lady of the Angels! This past week we were blessed to have a visit from Fr. Mariusz, Fr. Leo, and Fr. Gabriel, Franciscan Friars of the Renewal -- the men in gray. Fr. Mariusz is celebrating his fortieth anniversary of Ordination to the Priesthood this year (in conjunction with the Year for Priests), so we threw him a little party to honor his priestly service. Sr. Fidelis outdid herself once again with another awesome cake, pictured above. We all think she should go into business! We plied Fr. Mariusz with questions so he shared with us some of his best priestly memories. He served as a diocesan priest for the Diocese of Newark for 25 years and then after much prayer and discernment, entered the CFRs 15 years ago. With this background, Father's wisdom is great indeed and happily, we have been the beneficiaries of his priestly support and friendship. After forty years, Father told us emphatically he LOVES being a priest! Thank You, Jesus!

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Happy Father's Day to all our Dads and spiritual Fathers! To welcome in the Year of the Priest, we are going to share stories and books on amazing priests who have touched our lives in some manner. Father Willie Doyle was an Irish Jesuit who became an Army Chaplain in World War I. He died at the age of 44 on the plains of Ypres, Belgium, August 16, 1917, braving heavy gunfire to give his dying men the last rites.
Prior to his chaplaincy, he was a member of the Jesuit mission staff, giving retreats to feed his love for souls. His intense devotion to the Sacred Heart of Jesus fueled his own interior life and bore fruit in the lives of those he preached to. His retreats were always backed up by nocturnal Adoration and varied penitential practices. "Love of God is holiness and the cost of love is pain." A few of his devotional exercises were quite unique. So madly in love with Our Lord was he that when he was alone in Chapel he used to "uncover my breast and ask Him again to pour His grace and love into my heart. I often press my throbbing heart to the door of the Tabernacle to let Him hear its beats of love." He also would climb up to embrace a life-size Crucifix and cover Our Lord's Wounded Face with kisses. He was renowned for the number of aspirations he would say every day, keeping in mind the Presence of God at every moment.

In addition to his great sense of humor and bright personality, he was also known for being impulsive and decisive, tending to bossiness! "To begin with, he was simple and natural; people felt at home with him at once. He was very human and made large allowance for frailties. He was sympathetic and kind; a good listener, never showing impatience or weariness, no matter how drawn-out or tangled the tale." (Merry in God, Roman Catholic Books)
There's a marked difference between his picture as a young Jesuit seminarian and the picture above, taken shortly before he was killed on the battlefield. The sufferings he willingly undertook for the Love of Christ transformed him and prepared him for his eternity with his Beloved Lord.
Read more about Fr. Willie Doyle in Merry in God, A Life of Father William Doyle, S.J. and Father William Doyle S.J. by Professor Alfred O'Rahilly.






Wednesday, June 10, 2009

A Photo Collage Update

Below is a photo collage that we know you will enjoy:
from top right: Kathryn Sharpe...who God-willing will be entering our Community in September!; Seminarian John Parks with Sr. Marie St. Paul; Sr. Esther Marie with a big piece of Sr. Michele's Birthday Cake! Yay...Happy Birthday Sr. Michele - May 30; Sr. Augustine Marie with the newly ordained Fr. Bolding and his mom Pat; Fr. Bolding celebrating a Mass of Thanksgiving at OLS with Deacon Matt Henry; Fr. Bolding and Sr. Andre; Sr. Michele with her long time friends from OH - Dana and Bonnie; Sr. Augustine, Sr. Esther Marie, and Sr. Fidelis enjoying a few moments with Bishop Olmsted at the E. Valley Serra Club Golf Tournament!

 
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Friday, May 22, 2009

Signed, Sealed, Delivered!

May 13th, Feast of Our Lady of Fatima, was a very special day for us!  It was the day that we signed the contract with the construction company...and took that next step toward turning this dream into a reality!  

Our beloved Bishop, Most Reverend Thomas J. Olmsted, was visiting with us on that day, so we took advantage of his presence and asked him to pray with us as we prepared to take this sign the contract and begin construction. (see below)

Then Sr. Marie Andre put the pen to the paper and signed the contract...and now we are awaiting the permits.  As soon as they come through, it's full steam ahead with the construction of the Chapel!  

We are still fundraising for the 2 homes.  One will be used for a temporary dwelling for the nuns (it will allow us to accept 3 more vocations) and one will be used as a retreat house for priests.  Interested in helping?  Please email us at desertnuns@msn.com

We all are rejoicing and thanking the Lord for all He has accomplished here!  We thank Him for the graces He has so generously given us, so that we have the courage to follow His lead.  

It is always an adventure to follow Christ!  He leads us down paths that we would never dare to walk alone!  That is how it has been with this Foundation from the very beginning.  He is accomplishing great and wonderful things...and He is using us - His little and weak instruments- to do so! 

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Year of the Priest


(Sr. St. Paul and Sr. Fidelis with the new Bishop of Gallup, NM - our good friend Bishop-elect James Wall.  We ask that keep him in your prayers as his episcopal ordination is on April 23, 2009)

Recently Pope Benedict XVI announced the Year of the Priest - to begin on the Solemnity of the Sacred Heart, June 19, 2009.  This news came as a great surprise to us - and A GREAT JOY!!!  The theme of the Year is "Faithfulness of Christ - Faithfulness of Priests".  

As Poor Clares of Perpetual Adoration, this Year has special significance for us - as an prominent part of our charism to pray for Priests.  In December 2007, a beautiful document was released on Spiritual Maternity - intercession for  Priests.  Here is a link to the document: http://www.clerus.org/clerus/dati/2008-01/25-13/Adoration.pdf  

 If you have not read it yet, please do so.  It's awesome and would be a wonderful resource to connect with to prepare for this upcoming Year.  In any case, we are praying and discerning how we can best live this YEAR of intercession and thanksgiving for Priests.  If you have any thoughts or ideas (especially for those priests  out there who read this blog...) about what we can do, what initiatives of prayer might be introduced and so on, we would love to hear from you.  Please keep this in prayer - and if you get an inspiration...let us know!  In the mean time, we will continue to pray for our Priests and to prepare to intensify this intercession in the upcoming Year.

(Our faithful friend, Fr. Fred Adamson)
 
THANK YOU, POPE BENEDICT XVI...for this YEAR OF THE PRIEST.
Saint John Marie Vianney - please intercede for all priests - 
especially those who have most need of your prayers and those priests who have administered the Sacraments to us or assisted us in any way.


(Enjoying some time with Fr. John Caulfield from Washington DC 
and Fr. Matthew Lowry from Phoenix)
 
O Jesus, our great High Priest, Hear my humble prayers on behalf of your priest, Father [N].  Give him a deep faith, a bright and firm hope, and a burning love which will ever increase in the course of his priestly life.

In his loneliness, comfort him. In his sorrows, strengthen him.  In his frustrations, point out to him that it is through suffering that the soul is purified, and show him that he is needed by the Church, he is needed by souls, he is needed for the work of redemption.

O loving Mother Mary, Mother of Priests, take to your heart your son who is close to you because of his priestly ordination, and because of the power which he has received to carry on the work of Christ in a world which needs him so much.

Be his comfort, be his joy, be his strength, and especially help him to live and to defend the ideals of consecrated celibacy. Amen.

John Joseph, Cardinal Carberry (+1998)
Archbishop of St. Louis 1968-1979


Thursday, April 16, 2009

Easter Triduum at Our Lady of Solitude Monastery 2009

Below is a little video we put together to share with you our Easter at OLS. We were blessed to have a Maryknoll Missioner here with us - Fr. Kevin Hanlon  It was a truly blessed and holy time!  We hope you enjoy the video!  Will blog again soon!

   

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Well, well, WELL...It's been a long time!

Greetings fellow pilgrims as we travel together our Lenten pilgrimage. We are heading into the 4th week of Lent, which starts off with Laetare Sunday. Laetare!,or  Rejoice!, the Church puts on our lips at this halfway mark. It is a call to us full of depth and promise...and not just because we're closer to eating that chocolate or drinking that beer that we gave up for lent. But Rejoice!, because Christ loves us, and has offered Himself for us and we are about to be caught-up in that reality again these last couple weeks of lent, and especially Holy Week. Rejoice!, because we have been bought and ransomed at a infinite price, the precious Blood of Christ. 

WELL, WELL, WELL...Kudos and profound thanks to Richard Le Blanc, his family and all at Yellow Jacket Drilling Services who have generously donated their services to dig our well. They 'hit' water at about 650 ft, but are digging to about 750 ft for good measure! It was so fantastic to see water pouring from our property, an apt image for the 'living water' that Christ will give to refresh all who come to the chapel. With the permission of Bishop Olmsted we, with a couple of our friends were privileged to attend an 'open-air' mass for the first time at our property. Our loyal friend Fr James Parker, of the Rockford, IL diocese was the celebrant as we joined our hearts together at mass invoking the intercession of the strong protector of the Holy Family and master carpenter, yes, our beloved St Joseph. We are awaiting the permits from the county, and then look out...it's full steam ahead in building the chapel with Haydon Building Corp leading the way.
 Be assured of our prayers for you all, especially those who are experiencing hardship because of the state of our economy. These are the times that try us and   we need to look to find our peace and security in the One who does not change, Jesus Our Lord. We are all in this boat together, being tossed about by the same winds, but Jesus is in the boat with us and He will see us safely to shore.  

Saturday, January 24, 2009

Sharing Some Christmas and New Years Memories

Hello to All.  Sorry that we've been 'out of touch' with you!  It's no excuse, but things have been so busy!   Below is a little slideshow that we hope you enjoy.  It includes some photos of the priceless moments of this Christmas and the kick-off of 2009!  

God is good.  He has provided us with more joy and excitement than we know what to do with. Our greatest joy thus far this year has been the acceptance of our new Postulant, Sr. Michele Schafer.  She is a wonderful addition to our little 'band of sisters'.  You can see photos on our website: www.desertnuns.com 

We are standing on the brink of some pretty big steps with the whole construction project!  It's pretty awesome - but the details will have to wait until Sr. Mary Blogger can fill you in.  I'm just her pinch-hitter so to speak!  She'll be back in touch soon.  Till then, please keep our construction project/fundraising in your prayers!  We thank you and assure you of our prayers as well!  - The PCPAs