2018 Gathering – June 8 – 10 – New Melleray

Prayer Partners:

It has been our custom to pair those attending with those not attending as “prayer partners” – each praying for the other in a special way during the weekend gathering. This is a rather random pairing – – – those attending are listed first in each line.

Linda Harrington – Billy Bidwell & Colleen LeBlanc
Janice Krakora-Looby – Sorel Coward & Meritt Petrone
Martha Krieg – Margo Crandall & Peter Stuart
Karen Rushen O’Brien – Jo Eggen Smith & Carolyn Synovitz (Karen did not make it to New Melleray because of flight delays caused by bad weather in Chicago)
Collette Snydacker – Francisco Barbin & Katrien Holvoet
Kate Zilla – Emilia Fanyi Ngen & Lorna Tatomir
Peter Zimmer – Meg Hogan and Alex Woods

The Teaching

The teaching for this year’s gathering is “Liturgy,” based on Unit 9 of Michael Casey’s Exordium. (The entire Exordium course is available under the Resources tab above. Sr. Kathleen O’Neil will lead the morning discussion; participants should read Unit 9 ahead of time; this link will take you to Unit 9: Liturgy

The recording of Sr. Kathleen’s presentation, discussion questions and lectio suggestions can be found on the discussion page for June 9th’s presentation: Liturgy – 2018

Liturgy of the Hours

Those attending the gathering are encouraged to attend as many of the Hours as they can – even Vigils! Each person who attends receives a liturgy book containing the hymns, antiphons and psalms for the Liturgy of the Hours. If you wish to pray along, here are links to each day’s pages.

The schedule at New Melleray is:
Vigils – 3:30 am
Lauds – 6:30 am (on weekdays, Mass follows Lauds)
Terce – 9:15 am (on Sundays and Solemnities, Mass replaces Terce)
Sext – 11:45 am
None – 1:45 pm
Vespers – 5:30 pm
Compline – 7:30 pm

Schedule for the Weekend

Conversi Gathering Schedule

Friday evening discussion topics

Our discussion after supper ranged far beyond these questions, but the first of these is where we started. Peter spoke about how Br Placid taught him about liturgy in the garden and in the church – life was liturgy and liturgy was life for Br. Placid. We also spoke about the importance of place for liturgy and ritual – where one performs those rituals is as important as what one does in those rituals – and the importance of OLM and New Melleray for us as places where we learn to live liturgy.

  • Human beings are ‘meaning-making’ creatures – we give things/actions meaning beyond their appearance, and we convey that meaning through ritual. How important is ritual to your prayer life? What rituals do you use?
  • Liturgy is a particular sort of ritual in that the larger meaning of liturgy has to do with who we are before God – are you aware of the liturgies in your day-to-day routines. How do they awaken your sense of self-before-God? Or do they?
  • A large part of every monk’s day is spent in choir – RB says nothing should take precedence over “the work of God”, meaning the singing of praises to God. How does this monastic ideal play out in your own life? How have you adapted the rituals/liturgies of the office to your own situation? How have you shifted the details of your situation to accommodate the command to let nothing take precedence over Opus Dei, the work of God?

Saturday discussions

See the discussion page Liturgy – 2018 for the morning discussions. In the afternoon, Conversi traveled over to Our Lady of the Mississippi, where Sr. Kathleen and Sr. Gail joined us for further discussion of the importance of liturgy, especially as a necessary (and natural?) response to the One who created us.

Commitment Ceremony

A combination of circumstances meant that we had to move our Commitment Ceremony from its usual time on Saturday evening to the morning. We held it in the presence of the AIC during the time usually reserved for lectio divina. Janice Krakora-Looby renewed her Junior Commitment, Kate Zilla renewed her Senior Commitment and Collette Snydacker moved to Emerita status. Photos can be found in the gallery below.

Commitment program 2018

As of June 11, 2018, Peter Alan Stuart and Sorel Coward have made their first Senior Commitments in their own parishes.