Sister Bernadette greeted me upon my arrival at the Spirit Center and made me feel so welcome. During the end of my time at the monastary, she and Sister Corrine spent about an hour with me, telling me about working in the Boise Catholic Diocese Christian Education Office in the years after Vatican II. It was fun to hear them tell stories about that exciting time.
Sister Lillian served as primary host for me and all of the other guests at the Spirit Center. She took me down to the Clearwater River one afternoon (below left). One evening, she took me and Sister Celine (lower right) to view Hells Canyon. Sister Celine was staying at the Center for an entire month, a gift from her monastic community in Norfolk, NE for her jubilee, and also a gift for me.
Sister Carlotta took me on a long hike up the hill, bushwhacking around the backside (where we tried to find old deer and cow trails), finally to the pond, and home.
I already blogged about encountering Laurie, another pastor on sabbatical this summer.
The Monastery of St Gertrude’s has an active artist in residence program. Early on in my time I went to the evening presentation of a Boise State University undergrad art student who had been artist in residence for two weeks. I liked her oil paintings but what I loved where her photos of the Milky Way, taken on the highway in front of the monastery late at night.
Artist Cindy Steiler came up for a silent retreat but will probably be back as an artist in residence. She was artist in residence at the James Castle House in Boise this summer. We had some great conversations about art, the Catholic Church, and places of healing of rest.
Shortly after I arrived, two artists, both writers and both staying for about a month, began their residencies. What a gift to be there with Dana Stevens from Brooklyn and Heather King from Los Angeles.
The land itself became a character at the monastery. I never got tired of these views.