Catholic Church

This statue of Benedict of Nursia atop a church poses the revered Saint with his arms outstretched toward the sunset and the glory of creation.

As we reflect upon the past decade and the new year that just started, it’s a good time to take a look at what changes occurred in our lives, what we would do differently if we had a chance, and what we look forward to in the coming year.

We are often told to develop a healthy perspective, to try to have a well-balanced life. It’s not easy, but it’s a good goal to strive for.

For me, I made a big move from living with a small group of sisters to living in the monastery where we have about 100 sisters. It was quite an adjustment, but some of us formed a transition group and discussed what was hard and how we learned to cope with long halls and stairs, how to find different places and things we needed, and how to relate to different age groups.

It’s amazing to look back at what seemed difficult, but after a year or two we adjusted. And there are perks — we don’t have to cook, after a certain age we don’t have to do dishes, and we get to live with a lot of well-educated, interesting women.

I might have chosen a lower floor (I’m on the fourth floor) so I wouldn’t have so far to go, but I like my living group so it’s something I can live with. I have a large bright room with a bathroom close by so that’s another plus.

As I learn to live with diminishment, and some aches and pains, I am trying to keep a healthy perspective. Keeping a positive outlook is not easy in these turbulent times, but prayer and sharing with other sisters helps. I don’t want my world to become so small that I lose sight of the larger picture, the picture that includes the suffering people of the world, the lonely, the refugees, and the homeless.

Balance is a good word for all of us, whatever age we are. Physically, mentally, emotionally, spiritually balanced people are usually happy people. They have learned to love life and live it to the fullest.

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