Monday, July 13, 2009

Summer Adventure - St. Paul Summer Program!

Really! It really was an adventure for Cy and I. ^_^ Mahalo nui loa (Thank you very much) for all your prayers!!!

We traveled across the United States, from the Pacific Ocean to the next! It was the farthest we've been from home, but not once I felt homesick. (well, I did feel sick when we got there, but not homesick) Yep! So from Hawaii, aaall the way to Boston to the Daughters of St. Paul Motherhouse!

Oh gosh, I don't even know where to start! I have to say that it was the best and most memorable Summer Vacation ever. =D I think I took almost 500 something pictures last week - July 4th to July 12 actually. And I took some videos.
Hm, I guess the beginning would be the best place to start, huh? :-P :-)
So we woke up extremely early on July 4th to catch our 7:15 flight to LA where we would have our 7hr layover. We didn't really miss out on the fireworks - some locals in Hawaii do fireworks even if it's not fourth of July... So yeah. 7 hours of waiting... It wasn't that bad, it was actually a lot better than I thought it would be. I brought several card games and books to read but I didn't even use the cards or finish reading the books. So we hung out there for a while, and ate dinner and stuff... What was really nice is that the American Airline people allowed Cy and I to board the plane before the other groups (except first class of course) so that they made sure that they wouldn't leave us behind. So we were on our way to Boston! =D

I tried sleeping on the plane... and only managed three hours in the end or so. I was too excited and nervous to sleep anymore so we stayed away until we landed. Poor Cy didn't sleep...

We ended up arriving some several minutes earlier than schedule. That was nice too. Fortunately, we didn't have to wait too long before a couple of the Sisters picked us up! (hurray!) That was so sweet of them! :-)

Hm, well at first I was sure that I wasn't sleepy. But the time we arrived there (Boston time) was 7: something.... which meant it was 1 or 2 something in Hawaii time. So after arriving, eating a quick breakfast and seeing some familiar Sisters (who were in Hawaii some time ago) we kind of just collapsed in our beds.... and slept until 12 that day (still Boston time).

Then the two Sisters who picked us up earlier that day gave us a little tour of the Motherhouse. It was huge!!!! I'm thinking it must be twice or three times as big as a regular Costco store. We probably only saw 1/3 or even 1/4 of it. There were so many hallways that lead this way and that! To me it was like a really cool maze! I must've gotten lost like...3 times I think. :-) But it was sooo fun!!! We got to see the main parts of the house, and where we would have our meetings and where we needed to go - the Chapel (which is really beautiful!), the dining area, the assembly hall where we would have our classes, and our rooms of course.

I have to fastforward some parts otherwise this would probably be such a long post that you'd probably get bored with....:-P

Anyway... The next day (Monday afternoon when all participants arrived) we got started. What better way to start the program than in the Chapel with an hour of adoration? :-) That was really nice.

During the week...
The program was lead by Sr. Margaret Michael (the vocations director) and Sr. Tracey. They both did such an awesome job! I really enjoyed hearing both of their vocations stories. Everyday we had Mass in the morning, an hour of adoration (aka Visit with Jesus :-) ), and Lectio Divina every night before bed. After breakfast we all helped out in the kitchen! We had a couple of game nights where we would play card/board games and other games! There was Confessions on Thursday too. We also had really fun morning stretches almost everyday, but I think we all had a nice workout climbing up and down the stairs (our rooms were on the third floor). I have to admit that it was pretty fun going up and down the stairs. Looking down the stairway didn't feel that great though....

One of participants of the program said that another Sister said that when she was younger she used to drop things down there to watch it fall...

We had really great classes which were fun and sometimes funny! Sr. Margaret Michael gave an introduction to Pauline Religious Life.

Then Sr. Diane gave a little tour in the historical room (I forget what's it's really called) and told us how the Pauline Mission began in the USA. Then another Sister gave a tour of the Publishing House (which was really amazing!) And Sr. Carmen Christi gave a class on Mother Thecla, the Co-Foundress of the Daughters of St. Paul. I liked how she described her as 'in tune' with the Spirit. :-) We also had an awesome writing track led by Sr. Maria Grace. That was the best writing class I've ever had! 0_0 =D Part of our writing track was to watch 'Little Women' and we went to the house where the author grew up (she had a little sister who was an artist who drew on the walls of the house (no seriously, she did) , so it was kind of a combination of writing and art). We also had an Art track which I was looking forward to. ^_^ That was really fun. We went to an Art Museum too! We studied a painting of the Annunciation, and our assignment was to picture ourselves as a vessel for God like Mary... then sculpt it. =D I was aiming for a pot or bowl or something, but it ended up being a basket in the end.

Then we had a Media Night led by Sr. Christina! That was fun. (Yeah, I know I keep saying 'that was fun', but it really was!!! The entire program was my favorite!!!!)

On Friday, we had a little silent retreat. I really liked that. It felt good to be around silence and have time to be on our 'date with Jesus' :-) And it wasn't that difficult either. It was actually refreshing. (I've been on a silent retreat before too) It was only half a day too.
Later on after lunch we had our little outing as a group. That was the same day we went to the Alcott Museum (the author of Little Women s house)!

(The school that was on the side....)

(And the house!)
Unfortunately, like the Art Museum, taking pictures inside was not allowed. Oh well... It was really cool, but I don't think I can post all about it here...

After that we went to Bedham (at least, that's what I think it's called) for icecream! A kiddie cone is huge!!

Then we visited the Pauline Bookcenter in Dedham! I forgot my camera in the car so I didn't get to take any pictures inside... so you'll have to visit the Pauline Bookcenter where you are to see what it looks like! :-)

Then we had our last gathering night together. The junior professed Sisters arrived the day before so they were able to join us! We even got to meet the postulants! It was really really really fun!!!!! Everyone laughed soo hard that their faces turned red and started crying! We had awards too - some really hilarious ones (because there were so many jokes made along program) and some really nice ones. (Pencil sharpeners are extremely dangerous!!!! lol ) And the Sisters made a nice slide show of the entire week. Some of us cried because for most of them that night was the last night they would spend together. Then we all shared about the sculpture of our vessels and I played a song on the piano. ^_^ Now every time I play that song I'll think of that fantastic and memorable week! Then we had a final group picture taking and we all had a group hug!!

Most of the participants left the next day (Saturday). It was really sad to say goodbye, but at least we gave each other our email addresses so that we could keep in touch. (there were 8 girls all in all)

And last pic... Sr. Tracey did the lettering for the banner! Isn't her art amazing?! =D Oh yes, and we wanted to emphasize the impells part.

We all (the participants) had such a great time and learned so much! (Besides the important facts on 'rolls being brownies, and brownies being rolls', and to never ever bring along a metal pencil sharpener on the airplane... :-P ;-) ....) We all had such a memorable summer and a lot of us wished it wouldn't end! The Sisters were really like family to us.... We were had so much fun seeing what their life was like, and learning more about their amazing mission of spreading the Word of God through the media, and we were able to experience a little bit of it! :-D

Ugh... my brain's not working properly so I'm going to have to leave it at that right now...

P.S. We also had a tour of the downtown Boston area on Saturday since Cy and I left on Sunday. If I ever get the time and if I'm feeling up to it I'll try to post some pictures of that too, and more.... It's probably not a good idea to post something when you've arrived home 12 midnight...

Anyway, hoped you guys enjoyed this post. It's night time in Boston right now so I'm getting kind of sleepy.....


Easter A. said...


My baby's back!!!

Mr. Jack said...

Thanks so much for this post. I was wondering how the week went for you and your sister. Now I know that the sisters had a great visit with the Sisters!

I hope you'll write more about Boston in a future post.

Charity Therese said...

Lol, you're welcome! :-)
I think I will post more about it later...