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Fr Augustine Wetta

Come-and-see during Coronavirus

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Fr Augustine Wetta

I'm sorry to say I just today discovered this forum...which seems to me very orthodox, level-headed, and pious.

 I'm just wondering how other orders/monasteries/convents are handling the vocation situation right now.  Are they taking vocation guests?  (Full disclosure: I'm the new Vocation Director at Saint Louis Abbey...whatever that means). We had a sort-of "come and see" weekend planned for the fourth week of April, but it didn't seem wise to go ahead with it--though the guys themselves didn't seem put off.  I thought at first we could just "quarantine" them at our retreat house for a week, but that seemed risky.

I hope it is no breach of etiquette to start a topic when I've never participated in one myself. May I blame it on being a monk?  I've been living a cloistered life--literally.  Many thanks for this forum.  Also many other thanks to "Luigi," whoever you are.

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Fr. Antony Maria OSB

Welcome to a fellow Benedictine!

I know that our Guest Master has cancelled all guests until the pandemic passes. This is for the sake of the health and safety of the community, as well as for the people who would travel to spend time with us. We will often times have a come-and-see during the Triduum, but that has also been cancelled. I would imagine most communities are doing similar things during this time, but I don't know for sure.

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Kateri89

The community I’m in contact with is trying to schedule for July when hopefully this all has passed or at least calmed down.

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Lilllabettt

I wouldn't have anyone travel just now. Air and even interstate roads can be closed with such short notice. As we get into the thick of things entire cities may be quarantined.  Things should be calmer by June.

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TalithaKoum

I had a Come and See scheduled for May with the RSMs of Alma, but the VD and I decided to cancel for now and hopefully reschedule for the Fall!

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Luigi

Welcome aboard, Fr. Augustine! I had the pleasure of making a retreat at they abbey about a month ago. I got in just under the wire - I arrived in the morning, and by the evening the archbishop had ordered all public liturgies cancelled. But the monks didn't kick me out - thank God!

BTW, no breach of etiquette to join for the purpose of posting - I think that's what most pholks do. 

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Fr Augustine Wetta

Thank you for all the advice.  Best to be safe.  If a vocation can't weather a couple of weeks delay, then there was probably something missing to begin with.  Besides that, Saint Benedict did say that we shouldn't make it too easy for the new guys...  Thank you for the warm welcome and the advice.  I'm delighted to have found this great community.

By the way...I'm particularly impressed by the "Debate Table," which appears startlingly civil!

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Nunsuch

@Fr Augustine Wetta, welcome. I am very glad--and relieved--you decided this. I'm a college professor. We are conducting classes online for the rest of the semester, and both "Maymester" and summer session are also online. All international travel has been cancelled, too (not that many countries are welcoming visitors or conferences). So it may be well over "a couple of weeks." We are even being asked to consider how we might teach our fall semester classes online. 

I would hope that your potential candiates would not only understand but appreciate your caution.

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Luigi
10 hours ago, Fr Augustine Wetta said:

By the way...I'm particularly impressed by the "Debate Table," which appears startlingly civil!

It was not ever thus... but I'm glad we're making a good first impression.

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Fr Augustine Wetta

I agree with you, Nunsuch.  It's one thing to risk your own health, and quite another to risk your neighbor's. 

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Lea

Considering discernment, Covid-19 isn't that bad for me, because the sisters of the congregation I'm interested in are blogging a lot more than usual, which is good :) But I'm sorry for those who had planned visits or even entering as I know there are some around here in the Phorum. 

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Fr Augustine Wetta

We've decided on a "virtual discernment retreat"--and so far, there's been a lot of enthusiasm for it.  So spread the word.  If you're 20-35 and thinking about the monastic life (and who isn't these days?  I mean, we're all sort of cloistered, aren't we?) send me an email: wettajcaugustine/at/gmail.com.  If that doesn't work out, try hitting me up through my "author web site": https://www.augustinewetta.com.   Here's what he have planned:

“virtual vocations retreat” April 19-21:

We will do it over Zoom.  And it might look something like this:

FRIDAY, APRIL 17

AFTERNOON

VIRTUAL TOUR OF THE MONASTERY WITH FATHER AUGUSTINE

NIGHT

AFTER COMPLINE: CASSIAN—INTRO TO PRAYER (A PRACTICAL GUIDE)

SATURDAY, APRIL 18

 MORNING

10.00 FATHER ATHANASIUS—EXERCISE AND ASCETICISM

2:00 FATHER DOMINIC—OUR PROCESS OF FORMATION

AFTERNOON

4:00 AUGUSTINE—DECISION-MAKING (WITH THE DESERT FATHERS)

SUNDAY, APRIL 19 

MORNING

10:00 ABBOT THOMAS—MONASTIC SPIRITUALITY (HISTORICAL/PHILOSOPHICAL)

AFTERNOON

2:00 ABBOT GREGORY—THE RULE

 

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BarbaraTherese
On 4/3/2020 at 7:46 AM, Fr Augustine Wetta said:

I'm sorry to say I just today discovered this forum...which seems to me very orthodox, level-headed, and pious.

 I'm just wondering how other orders/monasteries/convents are handling the vocation situation right now.  Are they taking vocation guests?  (Full disclosure: I'm the new Vocation Director at Saint Louis Abbey...whatever that means). We had a sort-of "come and see" weekend planned for the fourth week of April, but it didn't seem wise to go ahead with it--though the guys themselves didn't seem put off.  I thought at first we could just "quarantine" them at our retreat house for a week, but that seemed risky.

I hope it is no breach of etiquette to start a topic when I've never participated in one myself. May I blame it on being a monk?  I've been living a cloistered life--literally.  Many thanks for this forum.  Also many other thanks to "Luigi," whoever you are.

Welcome, Father Augustine :)   Thomas Merton wrote in Contemplation in a World of Action, I think it was that contemplatives should share the fruits of their contemplation in the parlour.

Father, on Facebook, your blog, Catholic Discussion Forums, the world is in your parlour, Catholics and the whole world need to hear you.  

Share the fruits of your contemplation with us, please Father - and in sharing with us, with the whole wide world.  Success or failure is not our business, ours is to throw our seeds with Joyful abandon unconcerned where our seed lands. Just like the sower in the Parable of The Sower.  Success or failure is always The Lord's Will and His Alone, because failure to Him is not failure at all.  In fact failure, which He Permits, is the prime cause of much success (our Doctrine of Divine Providence).  "What is impossible to man, is possible to God."

I am preaching to the converted again!:pm:

I welcome you, Father Augustine, into the Pham PHamily with much Joy and thanksgiving.  I am so glad it is all over for Jesus, His Sufferings here, I mean.

“The beginning of love is the will to let those we love be perfectly themselves, the resolution not to twist them to fit our own image. If in loving them we do not love what they are, but only their potential likeness to ourselves, then we do not love them: we only love the reflection of ourselves we find in them”
― Thomas Merton, No Man Is an Island"

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UndividedlyHis

Hello everyone! I am discerning with a cloistered contemplative monastery and I was scheduled to have a 3 month long live-in starting Easter Sunday, with a possibility of entering in winter :) That obviously had to be postponed indefinitely because of the coronavirus danger. I completely understand that and was happy to agree with this decision, as it is only for the health and safety of the sisters - and myself as well! It is not really safe to travel right now, and we should always have the safety of others in mind, because loving others is what Christ has called us to do. I agree that if a vocation can’t wait, there’s probably something wrong to begin with. God never allows anything that isn’t for our souls good - including things that seem terrible at the beginning. Things should be calmer in several months, and we can all use this time to grow closer to Him. That’s our main goal and focus . :) For now we are hoping to maybe start the aspirancy around Assumption, or perhaps in the Fall.

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