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Showing posts from March, 2012

pilgrimage | departure & providential signs

The prophet Gad said to David, "Do not stay in the stronghold; depart, and go into the land of Judah." So David departed and went into the forest of Hereth.
--1 Samuel 22:5 Sunday after Vespers, I changed out of my white novice's robes and into street clothes removing that which identified me as monk. Until that point, I had been a monk for nine months. The pilgrimage must start, so I don't take time to dwell, that will come later. I throw my habit into the community laundry bin and peeled the labels marked "Ædan" from the last places I could reach without being obvious. I grabbed my duffle bag and was out the door and on the road in about fifteen minutes. No one chased me or tried to stop me, whether anyone saw me or not or realized what I was up to, I do not know. Fr Stephen did act a little reserved after Vespers when I told him I liked how much smoke the incense put out at benediction, so maybe. There was also no puff of sulfurous smoke, nor beams of h…

pilgrimage | a song of ascent

I was glad when they said to me,
    "Let us go to the house of the LORD."
Our feet are standing
    Within your gates, O Jerusalem,
Jerusalem, that is built
    As a city that is compact together;
To which the tribes go up, even the tribes of the LORD-
    An ordinance for Israel-
    To give thanks to the name of the LORD.
For there thrones were set for judgment,
    The thrones of the house of David.
Pray for the peace of Jerusalem:
    "May they prosper who love you.
"May peace be within your walls,
    And prosperity within your palaces."
For the sake of my brothers and my friends,
    I will now say, "May peace be within you."
For the sake of the house of the LORD our God,
    I will seek your good.
    --Psalm 121So let us go to the City of Ashes. So close is she in mind that it feels as though I'm standing within her gates already, though I know she is far off in mountains unseen. I lift up my eyes to those mountains, for from there …

pilgrimage | waiting for Godot

Therefore, son of man, prepare for yourself baggage for exile and go into exile by day in their sight; even go into exile from your place to another place in their sight. Perhaps they will understand though they are a rebellious house.Bring your baggage out by day in their sight, as baggage for exile. Then you will go out at evening in their sight, as those going into exile.Dig a hole through the wall in their sight and go out through it. Load the baggage on your shoulder in their sight and carry it out in the dark. -- Ezekiel 12:3-6
 Everything is packed, and like Ezekiel, I've done my packing early. Such is the way of the Mayeuxs. We get ready to take a journey. We plan, we pack, and then we wait ... and wait. You can't leave early, the schedule is set, (in the case of air travel or bus, by someone else) and for this particular journey by foot there are timing concerns as well; it is simply best if I leave toward evening. 

But the human condition is to wait in hop…

pilgrimage | trusting providence

And He said to them, “Take nothing for your journey, neither a staff, nor a bag, nor bread, nor money; and do not even have two tunics apiece. --Lk 9:3
Last post I mentioned trusting in Providence on this pilgrimage, and if ever there were a passage to illustrate that, it would be Luke 9:3. So I'm following it, except for the two tunics; I am taking a change of clothes, but not from a perceived need for them. I had them when I came here, and I'm trying to leave as little behind while taking nothing in addition with me (staying behind is a Douay-Rheims Bible [I'm taking my NRSV], a pair of gloves which I can't find, and a set of books I donated the library within a couple months of arriving). Following the parallel Mark 6:9, which tells the disciples to wear sandals, I'll be doing so. I do have boots packed, which is probably for the best, because I'm not sure how much road-wear these sandals can take.


But, trusting in Providence. This is not a completely passive…

pilgrimage | making a journey

Forty-eight hours till I hit the road. Then begins the pilgrimage to Our Lady of Ashes. I will travel 786 miles, ideally in a month, traveling eight hours a day by foot. My prayer is that it will be not only a physical journey, but a spiritual one. Legends of meeting the devil at the crossroads keep running through my mind, angels and demons, American Gods, wandering saints, the Wandering Jew, errant paladins, and the Lord knows what else. I can only trust in Providence and grace and the kindness of strangers. Keep me in your prayers, and may the Lord be between you and me while we are apart.

Pax.