Saturday, September 29, 2012

I Have A Dream

You might have read the title and thought this post would be about Martin Luther King, Jr.  However, these words were spoken to us by Bruno Cadore, OP the Master of the Order of Preachers last Saturday.  We traveled to the Motherhouse of the Dominican Sisters of Springfield upon the invitation of the Springfield Leadership Team.  The cloistered nuns were gathered for a conference and Brian Pierce, OP (Southern Province and liaison to the Dominican Nuns), as well as Bruno were attending the meeting.

Following Morning Prayer and Mass with the group, we had a chance to visit with Bruno, who asked how vocation promotion was going.  We explained that although we do some things collaboratively, each Congregation has their own vocation promoter, so there is not any consistency across the board.

Bruno then began his, "I have a dream" speech, sharing his hopes that one day nuns, sisters and friars will all work on vocations together for each other.  What if the friars who served in campus ministry encouraged women to join the various apostolic or cloistered communities?  What if the nuns, who often learn of interest of vocations through the internet could help send men and women to appropriate places for discernment?  What if sisters encouraged young men and women to consider all forms of Dominican religious life?

Bruno Cadore has a dream -- and so do we -- how do we make it a reality?

Jenn Schaaf

CDN Group with Brian Pierce, OP and Bruno Cadore, OP

Saturday, September 15, 2012

Birthday and Balloons

Last night we celebrated Joye's birthday by attending the Balloon Glow in nearby Forest Park.  Here are a few pictures from the event:


Thursday, September 13, 2012

Novitiate Follow-Up

Last Saturday, Sr. Christine De Anna, one of the novices at the CDN last year, made her first profession with the Dominican Sisters of Sparkill.

Sr. Joye Gros shared her reflections on the readings:

To read more about Sr. Chris's profession, visit this link:

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Short Story & Update

Our schedule at the CDN is beginning to have a rhythm with ministry mondays, Aquinas classes on Preaching and the Vows on tuesday, joining with other orders for ICN speakers on wednesday, History of Religious Life and Dominican Life on thursday, with days of reflection bridging the weekends often filled with events. We were especially fortunate this friday to be graced with Don Goergen, OP leading the friday of reflection examining prayer and contemplation.

Despite the packed and exciting schedule, we have also been finding ways to join together as a community for some fun. The following short story relates a harrowing escape of friday evening as narrated in 1930s pulp fiction style. This is what happens when a novelist is asked to post on the blog.

- Sr. Alexa

The Narrow Escape

This would be trouble—I knew it from the first moment we hit the pavement. An unearthly wind blew its solemn melodies down the grey shadowed street sending leaves trundling like helpless fairies into a flooded creek. Our intrepid trio rounded a looming edifice to face black clouds darker than a dungeon in the dead of night after its inhabitant had spilled ink on the ebony stone floor. The dames put on a brave face, but we knew it was only a bus ride and taxi away from real trouble. We pushed through the bristling blasts of wind and dust racing the oncoming monster of a storm. What foolish thought had sent us out? Distant snarling threatened us standing helpless in the deserted street surrounded only by candy wrappers blown by and that guy in a suit with a nefarious air. We were in a heap of trouble as sure as a tree casts shadows on a saturday afternoon. 

Wheels screeched the pavement as I felt the first drop on my hand, blown from miles away by the forceful gale. "Ya need a lift?" A strong New York lullaby rent through the stormy air by now thicker than molasses in January. She'd come through alright, as she always did. Giving her fedora a roguish tilt, she opened the doors. My boot had barely crossed the threshold when the rain came louder than the engine as we floored it for safety. Relentless water flung itself at our metal auto faster than greyhounds run to Fourth of July BBQs. Skidding to a stop, we poised for the sprint to our door. As I stood dripping on the grey-studded mat, I knew we'd had a narrow escape. Those St. Louis skies were not to be trusted. They were trouble alright, and we'd been caught square by them.

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Our First Road Trip

This past weekend, we took a road trip to the roots of U.S. Dominican life in Kentucky.  Here are a few photos from our trip:

At the "Overlook Restaurant" on the Ohio River in Indiana

A cow came to visit us while on a hay ride through the Dominican
Sisters' farm in St. Catharine, Kentucky

Sr. Rosemary Rule brought us to St. Rose Priory, the place where
Angela Sansbury and her companions were inspired to begin
the first Dominican Congregation of women in the U.S.

At Maker's Mark, Alexa points to the vat of
yeasty Bourbon brew.

Renee sips the final product at the end of the tour

We visited Gesthemani and prayed Vespers with the monks

On the way back to St. Louis, we stopped at Marengo Caves.

The beauty of the formations in the cave were reflected in natural pools.