|St. Anthony Friary, St. Petersburg|
So what have I been doing for the rest of my time? As much as I love my ministry and enjoy traveling about I would burn out if I didn't have quality time with my Franciscan community here in St. Petersburg. Although my prayer life continues when I am out on the road it is especially good to be here at home and to pray Morning and Evening Prayer and celebrate the Eucharist each day with my brother friars. Just being in the regular rhythm of that provides me with an anchor, a steady reminder of what my life, our life is really all about. Our community here consists mostly of men who are "retired," though there are several of us who are not. I put "retired" in quotes because one never really retires from being a friar or a priest, but as we get older we are relieved of the burden of administrative responsibilities and we work only as age and health allow. We have a 94 year old friar here, Fr. Emeric, who still goes out to say Mass in local parishes and who is chaplain for a local Knights of Columbus council.
Next week I hit the road again with a full schedule for Lent. You can see my schedule on the right side of this blog. I have been asked if I'm going to do videos for the Sundays of Lent like I did last year. Because I'll be using time to work on my book I won't be able to do that but I will be posting here on several different topics starting with a Franciscan reflection on Ash Wednesday which will be up in a few days, so stay tuned dear friends.