Del Señor Anniversary

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On February 1st, we celebrated Founding Day. Sixteen years ago I joined Sister Alegría to found Amigas del Señor Methodist-Quaker Monastery. That's twice as long as I've ever lived in any other place! As you know it's been quite a journey, and Sister Alegría and I feel blessed every day to live this life.

This year we were pleased to have Hermano Daniel with us for the celebration. On Monday, he and I visited our closest neighbors and invited the young family to come over too. Tuesday afternoon we all participated in a brief worship service on the porch. The young man was visibly proud when his wife Suyapa read aloud a Bible passage loud and clear. Good reading skills are not so common around here.

Everyone enjoyed eating the wacky cake I'd baked that morning. (We are pleased to have found some really good Honduran brands of cocoa powder.) The four year old boy ate half his piece with a fork standing over a bench (they took the rest home), and the 18 month old girl ate bites off of both parents' plates.

We thank God for this beautiful location where we have the privilege of living, and for this lifestyle that helps us put God at the center of our lives. It is a joy to say yes to the call every day, and see what God has in store for us each moment and year. The Spirit is moving, and we do our best to go where it leads.

For those curious about what our daily life looks like, Hermane Alma (Cai) wrote up a concise schedule which I include below.

from Sister Confianza, Amigas del Señor Monastery (2/3/2022)

 

Daily schedule as experienced by Hermane Alma/Cai


Amigas del Señor Monastery, Limón, Colón, Honduras

5:30am - 1st morning bell, half an hour for personal things like a walk before morning prayers

6am - Lauds (morning prayer), end of Great Silence

6:30am - breakfast (cold, no fire)

7am - start laundry

7:30am - Pendle Hill Quaker worship

8:15am - laundry and other morning household chores like sweeping, sometimes time for journaling when waiting in between laundry steps

9:30am - other larger tasks, like planting trees, wrapping pineapples so the birds don't get them, fixing the chicken house, getting milk and other supplies from the milk-person (lechero), picking berries, chopping kindling/ocote, mending pots, fetching kindling or wood shavings from the forest for fires and bathroom mulch, further cleaning tasks, etc.

11am - begin the fire for lunch, 1-2 people cooking, sometimes one person cooking and one person managing the fire, reading aloud, grinding corn, etc.

12:30pm - set table, eat lunch, clean table

1pm - occasionally shared reading or naps after lunch, more often time for spiritual deepening through journaling, extra singing, spiritual formation gatherings, extra Quaker worship, etc. Sometimes further physical/active tasks

2pm - bathing (whoever needs it)

2:30pm - Vespers (afternoon prayers), though this may get pushed back some depending on if we are doing more spiritual things before or after

3pm - flexible time depending on when Vespers was - generally group or individual spiritual time unless Vespers went until straight before making food for dinner

4pm - start fire for dinner, similar to lunch. Though there is no fridge, things like beans and rice can last multiple days if they are boiled twice a day, so even if we had food like tortillas from a previous meal that could be eaten cold, we made two fires almost every day

5:45pm - eat dinner and clean up

6:15pm - sometimes watch a sermon or lecture if we could download it earlier in the day when signal reached the phone and there was enough solar power, sometimes shared reading, sometimes journaling or reading time. Friday evenings we did a 'week in review' worship sharing about what we had each experienced that week

7:30pm - Compline (evening prayers)

8pm - Great Silence (nobody can speak until morning unless dire circumstances). I generally went to bed and did personal prayers, or occasionally went out and watched/danced under the moon/stars

Sundays were days of rest - we still cooked, but no grinding corn, doing laundry, or traveling. We would often join additional Quaker meetings for worship in the morning and listen to a sermon in the evening. Some weekdays we would go someplace, such as to a neighbor's house or into town. These days the schedule may be thrown off if we returned later than usual, and further walking or carrying things may incite naps.

 

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