Merry Christmas! Happy New Year!
To all our Special Friends and Loved Ones,
Whatever bad news continues to bombard us from our world and Church today, let us take consolation in the good news of the Gospel: “The angel said…Behold, I bring you good news of a great joy which will come to all the people; for to you is born this day…a Savior…and suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God and saying: Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace among men with whom he is pleased (Lk 2:9-10,13-14). Did you ever notice that the angel Gabriel’s prediction to Daniel that the end of the persecution would come after 70 weeks (490 days) is repeated at the time of Christ? The period from Gabriel’s announcement in the temple to Zachariah of the birth of John the Baptist, to the day when Mary brings Christ into the same temple at the Presentation 40 days after his nativity is exactly 70 weeks (6 + 9 months + 40 days = 490 days). That being so, then the rest of Gabriel’s prediction to Daniel, viz that the “decreed end is poured out upon the desolator” (Dan 9:27) is also being fulfilled by Christ: the evil which the Desolator (Satan) inflicts upon us has a decreed end. This is what Christmas brings us: good news that the evil we experience has a decreed end. So let us rejoice: Christ is coming and the days of evil have been numbered. Glory to God!
As for us, we have a few blessings to share with you since you received our (rather late) newsletter in October. For one, Rachel Hoffman entered the community as a postulant on November 1st. Welcome Rachel! Then the chapel wing —as of this writing—is 99% done. The water hasn’t yet been turned on, and there’s an issue with the drainage around the house that needs addressing. We hope these things will be resolved by Christmas. We also found that the expenses for the chapel wing exceeded what came in from fundraising by a good amount, so we pulled from our house operating budget to pay off the bills. We trust the Lord that money for food and for the heating this winter will be there when we need it. Any donations towards that would be greatly appreciated! God’s abundant peace and blessings upon you!
A week after Rachel’s arrival, a batch of 15 baby chicks arrived! They arrived in a cardboard box, about 8”x12” with holes in it so they could breathe. They have been a lot of fun ever since. As of this writing, they are three times the size they were upon arrival. Although we handle all of them (so they’ll be calm and peaceful around us), there are 4-5 which have become pets. They are the first to fly into our hands when we stretch them out in their pen. Sr. Scholastica has become the “mother hen” of the whole brood and they do get quite excited when they hear her voice in the morning.
The saga of the chickens gets even better. We inherited with the property an old coop that had definitely seen better days. We had been wondering for some time whether we should burn it down and start all over or clean it up and give it a couple of coats of paint. We were really in a quandary when a miracle happened. A couple who saw our recent newsletter asked if they could be of some help…mentioning that they were skilled at carpentry and could even build a chicken coop (totally unaware of our need!) Before long, they had completely renovated the old coop (see pictures on reverse). What a blessing! Thank you, Bob and Roberta Thomas!
We pray that all of you have a most wonderful celebration of the Lord’s birth this Christmas. Rejoice and be glad! May all the blessings of this holy season be yours now and throughout the New Year.
Love and prayers from all of us,
Queen of Peace Monastery