Thursday, June 24, 2010

Writing from Africa

June 24, 2010

Peace and Good,

I am writing this blog in an internet site in Tamale, Ghana, West Africa. I am here to give a retreat to a group of seminarians (about 50 of them) in the major seminary studying for several dioceses in Northern Ghana and also Burkino Faso, to the north of Ghana.

It is aways a privilege for me to be able to share my insights with priests and seminarians. When I do it in foreign countries, I sometimes worry that they will not understand what I am trying to say because of our different cultures. That does not seem to be happening here. The young men are enthused about their faith and most generous in their service.

I have always loved the people of Ghana. I find them to be the most gentle and courteous people I have ever met. Whether that lasts when the US plays Ghana this Saturday night in the World Cup we'll have to see.

It is hot, hot, hot! I am taking all the precautions against heat stroke and malaria which is endemic in this area. Keep me in your prayers.

I have finished a couple of books in this time. The first is entitled At Agincourt by G.A. Henty. He wrote a series of stories around the turn of the century. They are based in historic situations. I was surprised how good a read it was. Agincourt was a great victory of the English over the French in the 15th century (the days of Henry V). Most of the story is an adventure story that leads up to the battle.

The second book is Through Russia by Maksim Gorky. Gorky was a Russian author who wrote at the end of the 19h century into the 20th century. In his latter days, he became a stooge of the Soviet government. This was written much earlier, and it presents a number of scenes from Russian life at the beginning of the 20th century. It is incredibly good. You feel like you're entering their lives and struggles. This is the first thing I have ever read by Gorky, but I will certainly read more.

My schedule for the next months is:

June 19 - 30, 2010: St. Victor's Major Seminary, Tamale, Ghana - seminarian retreat

July 4 - 10, 2010: St. Francis Convent, Mishawaka, IN - Retreat for Sisters

July 11 - 18, 2010: Quellen Spiritual Center, Mendham, NJ - Retreat for Sisters

July 19 - 23, 2010: St. Francis of Assisi Friary, Mishawaka, IN - Novice Retreat

July 24 - 31, 2010: Chatauqua Community, Chatauqua, NY - Priest in Residence

August 5 - 15, 2010: Our Lady of Consolation Shrine, Carey, OH - Parish Novena

August 16 - 20, 2010: Maronite Seminary, Washington, D.C. - Seminarian Retreat

August 21 - 27, 2010: Ocean City, MD - vacation

August 28 - September 3, 2010: St. Francis of Assisi Friary, Mishawaka, IN - Novitiate Conferences

Take care and

fr. Jude


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