Monday, October 27, 2008

Monday Mornings :(

I am not sure what God was thinking when He created Monday mornings. Worse yet I am not sure what He had in mind when he came up with the whole rainy Monday morning thing, unless of course he meant for us to sleep in (my belief). This morning I barely could wake myself in time for breakfast and morning prayer. (note: I wish I had gotten up earlier and went to Dunkin Donuts, to use the sweet birthday gift card sent to me from one of G-Town's greatest residents, and purchased large amounts of caffeine).

Every Monday morning at St. Mary's we have something called Sulpician meditation. Instead of saying the office (psalms-which we instead do on our own-just on Monday mornings), we gather in the chapel, and are led in a guided mediation. The meditation asks us to begin by shutting our eyes. Then we are led through a series of reflections on a short passage from the Gospel, lasting about twenty minutes. It is in fact wonderfully done and helpful when your mind and body are awake and not angry with you for vacating your bed. The challenge for me is the whole shutting your eyes part. Shutting them is the easy part, opening them again not so much.
I feel like that it is a dangerous proposition clearly devised by a morning person. On the one hand it is nice to shut one's eyes and reflect, however on the other I live in fear I will fall asleep and snore. I am told it has happened before, but I shudder to think the laughs my buddies would get from it. When I shut my eyes in the morning it is lights out. I wish I could stay awake like the rest, but I just can't especially on Mondays! In the end I have fought the temptation to fall asleep, this morning I did have to open my eyes for a moment and saw some head bobbing.

In the end I suppose God knows our hearts and our humanity, and I give it my best. However, I secretly wonder if I am the only one who begins my Monday morning Sulpician meditation by saying "please God don't let me fall asleep."

Over and out!-

-Mr. Nelson

p.s. prayers needed for paper marathon #2, details to follow.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Fun Video

On the left column you will find a sweet link to a brilliant video created by Dan Dunn and Alex Letvinchuk this past summer. We were in Philadelphia working with the Fransciscans for a service week when they took a morning detour with me when I had my Seminary interview. I left them on the front lawn for two hours and this is what they came up with. I hope you enjoy it. They are two clever, witty and brilliant gentlemen with amazing futures ahead of them. Hope you are having a great week.

-Mr. Nelson

p.s. Is it a bad sign when you have a take home mid term, you aren't allowed to talk with others about and you have no idea what any of the questions mean or asking?

Monday, October 20, 2008

B.B.E. (Best Birthday Ever!)

I have just arrived back in my room at the seminary and wanted to say that I had the best birthday this past week, thanks in part to all of you!

Thursday afternoon we had an Alumni Day Mass and celebration at the seminary. Many of the priests, bishops, etc... who graduated from this place came back to celebrate their reunions, etc... At 1:56pm the rector (the head priest) declared our vacation officially in session. By 1:59pm I had sprinted up four flights of stairs, thrown off my suit jacket, grabbed my suitcase and was running through the lobby with my suitcase over my head. It was a little awkward running with my suitcase past bishops, priests and all the assembled guests making their way out through the formal lobby, but I was going home!!!!!!!!!!!!! After nearly knocking a few people over I was outside and quickly ushered to a getaway car which was taking me to the airport for a 3:30pm flight. Arriving at the airport I quickly made my way in, with a fellow NH seminarian, once we were through security all was well. Until we tried to board a plane to New Mexico by mistake. Thank goodness we were flagged off the flight in time as there were screaming,spoiled brats in line for the flight. It might have been a seminary formation issue if I tried to through the monster children off the flight, mid way to New Mexico. They were screaming at the top of their lungs, "I want a cookie.... give me.. give me..give me... and on and on..."

Luckily it was not my flight and I was soon on my way to NH. After dinner with some friends on Thursday night I stayed with a good friend and made my way to Trinity for the morning. Mr. Mailloux let me do morning prayer which was great. Although I was only at Trinity for a few minutes in the morning it was the greatest birthday present I could ask for to be back home again and to see all my most brilliant students and former colleagues! I only had a few minutes and sadly did not get to see everyone I was hoping to (please forgive me Ms. Moquin, Mrs. Hollingsworth + Mrs. Henning I thought I would have time when I came back at the end of the day but it did not happen!)

After catching up with my colleagues after school I was off to celebrate a birthday tradition with some friends from my days at Saint Anselm. I spent most of Saturday catching up with friends and made my way to my family home in Brookfield late that night.

Monday was back to Manchester, a quick dinner with some great friends (thanks guys!). All this food is setting me backwards on my diet! Next I was off to the airport and back to Baltimore. I was greeted by a pile of care packages and cards a mile high. THANK YOU GUYS SO MUCH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! (Special shout outs to Wolfman and Company, Moody, Serrechia and the awesome THS Birthday Song performed by students at the Homecoming Dance?, Team Walter, Thompson, Moquin, Velez,Thees, Derr, Adams,Dunn, Kelly and the boatload of texts). Thank you to everyone who sent their greetings and wishes, it made this birthday a special one! I miss you all and cannot tell you how much your cards, packages, emails and prayers mean to me.

-Mr. Nelson

p.s. Why are there people swarming outside my room saying "cookies, cookies, cookies?"

Wednesday, October 15, 2008


That is right, we have a fall break from Thursday afternoon until next Monday night. I will be taking a Southwest flight to the great state of New Hampshire to enjoy it in style. I am very excited to be heading back for a few days and to take a break from school! I will be spending Friday at a clergy confrence on education and Catholic schools. If I can swing it I will try and stop by Trinity before I head home for a couple of days. On Monday I will be back in Manchester and then off to the airport. Hopefully I will catch up with some of you in the process. Let me know if you are around.

-Good Night and See or Blog with you all in a few days!

Monday, October 13, 2008

A Day Out

It is 12:16am and St. Mary's is as quiet as a nursing home after Wheel of Fortune and Jeporady. Everyone is fast asleep awaiting the dreaded Monday morning. Since I probably should be asleep too I will keep this post short. This week was a busy one. We had tons of readings, meetings and other such things going on. I recieved my first Philosophy paper back and was happy to see I passed with a B+. I will keep working for an A+.

I was overjoyed on Friday when the weekend finally arrived. I must be honest I actually took it easy this weekend and it was great. I caught up on my sleep and found time to hang out with friends. Friday night I went to a great San Salvadoran Restaurant with another Manchester Seminarian and later to the movies with a few of the guys. On Saturday I enjoyed a dinner prepared by two Seminarians from Columbia. It was some sort of rice/stew/vegatable combo and it was great (I love food)!

This morning a group of the new seminarians visited St. Charles. St. Charles was a high school seminary (a place where high school students went to discern if they where called to be priests). It closed in the 1980's and has since been developed as senior citizen housing. It is a really neat place as they have interegrated housing with the old seminary buildings. The center of the property is the beautiful chapel which is now a parish. It is kind of neat as the senior citizens have their own parish on the grounds. We went to Mass and toured the amazing grounds. All in all it was a great day.

Saturday, October 11, 2008

Update Coming

Sorry for the Delay Friends! Not to worry I have an update coming later this evening. Man has it been crazy busy. Hope you are enjoying the long weekend!

Saturday, October 4, 2008

Secret Posting!

Good morning and Happy Feast of St. Francis. Since Mr. Nelson has been promising you pictures of St. Mary's forever and hasn't really come through, I figured I would take matters into my own hands, paws actually. who knows when he will get around to it. You know how he is, always busy with work or professional modeling. Bellringer, his pet fish, was going to come to but I could not carry the fish bowl and the camera. Sorry buddy.

First stop the all important Dunkin Donuts Coffee (Go New England!)

Welcome to my Home, St. Mary's Seminary!

We train seminarians to be priests here and we also have a center for people from other faiths to study God. (I love these signs!)

Now our first stop is class. These hallways are huge, the floors are crazy. I can see myself.

My favorite class was Mr. Nelson's, but this one is not bad. (Not as much fun however!)

Oops, can't forget to address the New York Yankees Fan Club.

Check the mail. How sad his mailbox is empty. :( Good thing his BIRTHDAY IS OCTOBER 17th! Oh look his mailbox number is 43, that is Box 43, 5400 Roland Avenue, Baltimore, MD 21210.

Time for a quick lunch

Some fun

Dinner! The food is great and the servers and chefs are super nice!

Some golf on the grounds

Time to eat again, my favorite, besides prayer!

A quick drink

A work out

Time to study in the library, man my eyes are tired. Everything is blurry.

A little research for later

Our lounge is a great place for my favorite drink, Dr. Pepper. Only Diet Coke tonight :(

A quick game of pool. I always let the others win.

Another Diet Coke and some T.V.

Check my favorite blog The Adventures of Mr. Nelson & Bellringer

Night Prayer (I wanted to show you the chapel too, but no animals are allowed.)

ZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZ (dreaming.... of cookies being sent to my mailbox....chocolate chip ones... and swedish fish...)

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

A Day of Recollection

Today we had a day of Recollection. This was quite exciting on many levels. The first being we all could sleep in until 8:30am (prayer was at 9:00am). What is a day of recollection? A mini retreat of sorts. We began the day at 9:00am with morning prayer and followed it with a reflection offered by a wonderful guest speaker on the life of St. Francis. After the intial reflection we had time for quiet reflection, midday prayer, lunch in silence, more quiet time, confession, quiet time, an afternoon reflection, quiet time, mass, dinner and then back to the usual.

It was a nice break away from the rat race of life. I enjoyed sleeping in, hearing the reflections of others and quiet time (including, I must confess an amazing nap, okay an amazing two naps- but they were divine!). Every month or so we have some time set aside for a day of recollection/ mini retreat. It is a nice break from things and an opportunity to put everything inot perspective. I know I enjoyed being able to just sit in my room, not worry about work, and spend some time just thinking about things (where I am, why I am here, what God wants me to do, why it seems like I can never figure out what God wants, why I need to trust). It is crazy how busy we all get in life, even in a place where we are supposed to be seeking God. It seems so easy to not focus, to get wrapped up into other things and not take time out.That being said I was glad when the day ended and we could talk again.

On another note tomorrow morning I am the leader for morning prayer. AHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH. Even though it is no big deal I am nervous because everyone will notice if I mess up, not to mention the fact that it is the feast of the guardian angels, which means it will involve many different elements. AHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH! I will be sure to let you know how it goes. In the mean time, off to bed. :)

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Please note this blog will begin being regularly updated after August 21st (when I arrive in Baltimore).