I had heard of the Fairfield Carmelites over the past year or two. I was even vaguely familiar with their situation – having received a “visitation”, and in the midst of a large building project.
What I did not anticipate was that they would become a part of my life the way that they have. In truth, I believe I am already a part of their life as they spend their days praying for the Church and the world. I’d like to believe I fall into at least one of those categories.
I finally got to visit their grounds and hear Mass in their chapel. Stunning, sobering, stranquil (sorry ,I couldn’t find another “s” word so I made one up)… I vowed I must return and I must spread word of them however I can so that others might give their prayers and their financial support. These women are probably the closest thing you will encounter to angelic beings on this earth and, from the looks of things, their new monastery might be a tiny piece of heaven. Check out this video that was just shared with me.
Please, at the very least, offer a rosary for the sisters and their intentions. It is the least any of us can do considering their life of prayer offered for us. If you can give, there is information at the end of the video about that. Last week I bought a hoodie but I think that sale has concluded.
May God bless these women and their work!
St. Teresa of Avila and St. John of the Cross, pray for us!
Last week I had the amazing opportunity to visit the Fairfield (PA) Carmel for a daily mass. It was nothing short of heaven on earth. I am used to visiting a Carmel closer to home and expected to see the customary cloister grill along the back or side wall of the sanctuary. However, at Fairfield the nuns are using a temporary space in a barn while their new home is constructed. As such, the cloister sits above the chapel and a large square in the ceiling is the wrought iron grate. Hearing their beautiful voices wafting down over the Holy Sacrifice as they chanted gave me a glimpse of what the angels must sound like as they perceive Our Lord in the Sacrifice. I will return (perhaps tomorrow)
Today my son and I joined up with the final leg of the Pilgrimage for Restoration. We met other Sunday-only pilgrims at the visitor center parking lot at the Shrine of the North American Martyrs in Auriesville, NY, where we were bussed out to the meeting point. Not only did I run into many friends – this trad world is indeed a small world – I had a wonderful encounter with a woman on the shuttle. She’s from Philadelphia. I told her I was married there. She knows people who went to my wife’s Alma Mater. I mentioned my recent trip to the Carmel. She knows the caretaker.
Then I brought up the fact that a “friend” of mine who happens to run the St. Luke’s Gallery (and absolutely click that link) had mentioned the same caretaker to me last week. Here’s that story…
The curator of St. Luke’s Gallery had reached out to yours truly a while ago about a post I had written. Although we have not met in person we struck up a friendship via email. Last week I asked him about the Mass times at the Carmel. He responded, “The nuns don’t observe daylight savings time so the mass is an hour later than what you’d heard.” And that, my friends, is the most alpha nun statement of all time.
“We simply don’t do daylight savings time.”
But within minutes, my new friend had whipped out her phone and dialed my other new friend at the Gallery. She handed me the phone and said, “It’s him. Say hi!” And so I sheepishly said, “Hello? It’s Harvey. Happy Sunday!” And we shared a good laugh. I love this guy’s work, by the way, if I hadn’t mentioned that. All of this by way of mentioning a few things.
1) Trad-land is a wonderful place filled with amazing and faithful (and lively) people. 600 of us gathered to walk across the Catskill Mountains to pray for restoration. The solemn high Mass at the conclusion was stunning.
2) The Fairfield Carmel needs your financial help to build their new home. Click this link to buy a hoodie and help them out. I hear it’s only on until the 27th of September.
3) Carmelite nuns are boss.
4) Do not ever be discouraged. If you had seen what I saw this afternoon… Looking out over the Mohawk Valley, I saw brigade after brigade of families – dads and sons, moms and older siblings pushing strollers, even more senior members of our tribe – joyfully walking, praying, singing. Even if we are only a remnant, what a remnant! And…
5) If one more person today had asked me, “So, you’re from Texas? Do you go to Taylor Marshall’s parish?!” I was about tor reply, “Perhaps… or perhaps he goes to my parish.”
Now go click those links and help out some fellow trads.
Folks, I got off all that social media nonsense a while ago. Sorry but I'm not on Twitbook, Facepalm, YouHu, WingWang or any of the others. Maybe an event will happen to make me change my mind like Peter and Paul coming down with flaming swords and commanding it be so. Until then, read the blog and if you feel a comment is in order or you feel like sharing a tip or suggestion for a topic, email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Harvey is a funny, witty and interesting read. Want to know what's going on in the world of Harvey? Then make a point to subscribe to his blog! You just never know when those pesky Weebles will show up. Hmmm, speaking of Weebles - haven't heard from them in a while (wink). Seriously, you just never know what to expect and whatever you find, it never disappoints! -- Debbi Robertson @ Photos and Facets