So Thankful and Blessed

 

This Thanksgiving weekend has been kind of busy–you\’ll see what happened in a later post! But we wanted to share some of our Thanksgiving preparations with you. We had a lot of fun setting up the community room for our traditional \”talking\” Thanksgiving meal. 

Setting out the tablecloths

Admiring our Thanksgiving-themed paper plates

Bengal Spice herbal tea–a gift from a Sister\’s family!
The finished room

Last minute cooking and prep

Off to set the table!

Singing our Thanksgiving grace

Another view of the grace

The inevitable clean up–it wasn\’t too bad
 
We are so thankful for the many blessings God has given us this past year, even in the midst of COVID-19 and other disasters. We had food to eat and good company, and we\’re well aware of the many people who had to sacrifice one or both of those things this year. We thank God for bringing us together as a monastic family, where we strive to love one another and build each other up in charity and peace. 
 
May this coming Advent be a time of joyful expectation as we await the coming of our Savior!

Celebrating Our 75th Jubilee!

 

Today marks the 75th anniversary of our monastery\’s establishment here in Lufkin! We had big plans for today: a Mass with numerous concelebrants, a reception, visits, souvenirs…but all that went by the wayside when COVID-19 came along. We hope to reschedule these events later, but for now our celebration has been scaled back a lot. Nevertheless, we are still celebrating! 

We published a long and informative article on the history of our monastery in the latest issue of our newsletter, \”Monastery Bells\”. If you don\’t receive the Bells, you can read it here.

 (By the way, if you\’re interested in receiving our newsletter in your snail mailbox, please go to the email address on our website and send us your name and address! It\’s free!) 

We also want to share just a few pictures that didn\’t appear in the Bells:

This is another view of the first incarnation of the Monastery of the Infant Jesus. Note the statue of the Infant Jesus in front! We still have this statue in our infirmary yard. In 1945, the Monastery was right on Lotus Lane, instead of up the hill as it is today.

 This photo was actually taken in the late 1940s, but it shows the growth the Monastery experienced in a short amount of time.

The sign on Lotus Lane directing visitors where to turn onto the access road to reach our Monastery today.

Part of the front of the Monastery today.

And finally–another version of our latest community picture!

We give joyful thanks to God for the past 75 years, and pray we will be here for many years to come!

 

Happy Feast Day To You!

 

We\’ve had a lot of feast days to celebrate recently–the Archangels, St. Therese, the Guardian Angels, and Our Lady of the Rosary. So, how do we celebrate? 

Some things are subject to change depending on circumstances. For example, we currently have a generous cook who makes whatever the feast day sister wants for dinner and supper on the big day (within reason, of course!). The novitiate sisters often have a little party when one of their own celebrates her feast day. And all the sisters receive cards, small gifts, prayers, and other tokens of affection from the other sisters.

And, we sing a song of the feast day sister\’s choice at recreation! This is actually a big deal because sisters often choose songs we don\’t sing at Mass–and therefore sing rarely. We all stand in a circle for the song. Before COVID-19, the feast day sister went around the circle to embrace each sister, but we put that on hold for the time being. Still, we are happy to be a part of the community and to have a group of sisters to support us in good times and bad.

 As another song we never sing at Mass goes, \”the best things in life are free\”!