laundry work

It is “catch-up week” at the monastery; a time to address unfinished projects, do major cleaning and clear out unnecessary stuff.

Each day after Eucharist, sisters “dress down” in work clothes and begin to tackle what has been left undone for too long.  Vacuums, dusters and sisters, run at full tilt.

refectory work

As you can imagine, it is a noisy week.  There are workers who come in to inspect, repair and advise. Our to-do lists are very ambitious and sometimes the desire to complete a project can overwhelm a sister’s inner peace. Yet St. Clare of Assisi reminds us to work in such a way that we do not extinguish the spirit of prayer (CA:ED, 119).  Everything that needs to get done will get done. The rest can wait until another day or another “catch-up week.”

Our Abbess’ prayer for us is, “Lord, may we work in such a way that You can catch-up with us.”

Lent is a forty day “catch-up week.” We have an opportunity to roll up our spiritual sleeves and tackle what we have put off facing within ourselves.  It is a time to dress down from the habits that keep us from doing the real work of spirit: to face within ourselves what we have avoided for too long; to clear out the nonessentials that clutter our souls; to clean up our lives by letting God catch-up with us.