A few days ago I heard that the Dominican Sisters of Mary would be featured on Oprah. I usually don’t watch Oprah but I made a point to catch this episode. It was close to my heart for a number of reasons. Mainly, because my mom spent all of her teenage years in a convent (Notre Dame in Toledo) and it was her dream to be a nun. She was a postulant, she even became a novice and was expected to make final vows with her class. God had other plans!:) She broke her back and was sent home for healing. She desperately missed the cloistered life and, and wrote her Mother Superior and begging to come back. When a doctor wouldn’t sign off on a medical release, she decided to take a trip to Florida to visit a relative. It was there that she might my snazzy dad and…the rest is history!:) I know she struggled with the decision for decades, but has since made peace with the choice and God’s path for her life. I thank you, my brothers, and our families thank you mom!:)
Anyway, I thought the ladies were portrayed beautifully, and rightly so! I think there are a lot of misconceptions about the religious life, especially for those who grew up with “mean nuns” who broke out the rulers and threatened hellfire over minor infractions.:) I think anyone, from any religion understands that as humans, there will be some that don’t always represent the faith tradition in an ideal way. I am certainly guilty of that myself!! Anyway, if you missed the episode, it is worth checking out. What I also enjoyed what the “after the show” video. They reflect on silence and the importance of meditation. It made me sad thinking of how much I fall in to the category of “go-go-go” and constantly being “plugged in”. I do try…but I know I could do better. Click here for the video.
On a different note, it made me think of a film I watched last summer. I was going to blog about it then, but changed my mind because it’s definitely not for everyone and might even seem weird to some. Without being exposed to the beauty and sanctity of cloistered life, it’s hard to explain. Anyway, this is a look inside an ancient monastery in the French Alps and their day-to-day routine and vow of complete silence. When they did open their mouths though, they let out the most incredible, awe-inspiring chants…it gave me goosebumps! The documentary was long (there is no dialogue after all) Lol. However it gave me a lot to think about, especially because I TALK for a living! Ha ha. Anyway, here is the trailer for what it’s worth. It’s called “Into Great Silence”.