Wednesday, September 28, 2016

A Visit to the Cemetery

Walking in the cemetery has often been a meditation for me.  Recalling the last days of the suffering in the lives of these Sisters while on earth as their Living Stations of the Cross, I now view my walk up and down the rows,  recalling them more like the Living Stations of the Saints.


In my last three visits to our cemetery, I saw a beautiful white squirrel jumping happily from one tombstone to another, looking a bit like playing hopscotch. It was simply being  happy jumping around as it was meant to do. Or was it simply looking for nuts that were buried around the edges of some of the tombstones?  Do these creatures sense their connection with this  holy ground?  Does the remaining ashes of these deceased Sisters enrich the soil making the grass more soft and pleasing to their tiny feet? When one looks at the surrounding green hedges, and all the beautiful trees of different kinds, different shapes, different textures, and different sizes surrounding the whole cemetery, one can’t help but wonder if part of their beauty comes from the Spirit of these Saints buried here since 1880”s.  Does this squirrel, also one of God’s creatures instinctly live out its “Godliness”  becoming a reflection of the beauty of God? And we as  human beings with the same Creator, are we attracted to all the beauty, including this white squirrels for the same reason? Even though the decayed  bodies are  still here, their ashes, or dust, are holy, making it holy ground.


Often before leaving the cemetery, and walking between the rows, knowing they are ashes but believing that  their Spirit is alive,  I read the names of these Sister-Saints out loud and ask for their intercession, that their Spirit be very much present guiding our community  in our discernment process in electing our next prioress.  Hoping to see my white furry friend again.


  Margaret Mandernach, OSB

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