Peace to you and I trust you are all well as we move through the current health issue. It seems that we are coming out of it now, with more talk of things opening back up again. We have have opened up our Sunday mass to the public again, and it is nice to see the friendly faces - albeit with masks on. Hopefully soon we will not have to wear them! For this we pray.
I'm sure it must have been so difficult for you not being able to get to church. As oblates this would have moved you into a deeper prayer life, uniting yourselves with everyone around the world who prays the office. That is an important part of being an oblate - knowing that your oblate brothers and sisters around the world are praying with you, and for you, and you for them - as we do.
We have been moving through a lot of difficulties and challenges in our country, and indeed around the world. It is a time for us to turn more fully to God and keep our eyes fixed on Him - as Fr Sam would often remind me. It is indeed the Lord who sustains us - and even in all of the challenges we face - God is present and will bring something good out of it all.
At this point I'm not sure we will be hosting an oblate retreat this year - the numbers have continued to decline and it seems more and more that their is a lack of interest. Anyway, we will se what the Spirit says. I have been in communication with a man who wants to become an oblate and also help me with the program. He came here for a visit so we could meet one another, and then Covid began, and so we have put our discussions on hold for a while until life settles. But it is nice to have someone who has the energy and willingness (and skills) to help with the program and bring new life into it. At this point we plan on contacting one another again at the end of summer.
I will keep you updated. For now, know that you remain in our daily prayers, especially during these difficult times - may God bring us through the difficulties that we might move forward with our lives.
We continue to pray for you and thank those of you who do so much for us, in so many ways.
God bless you,
Fr. Aidan, OSB