Posted by: Joe of St. Thérèse | September 17, 2010

My first month of Postulancy

I’ve never been one to really be “adventurous” and try new things. I’ve always been very conservative in my approach to life, staying within my known boundaries of what’s given, and only if need be step out of those. Quite frankly I was very comfortable in the life that I had before. I didn’t have the spotlight, I had my close circle in which I confided certain things to, but for the most part I was a nobody trapped in California enduring Liturgical Purgatory diocesan version. I worked behind the scenes on somethings, and did others in public, life although it had its fair share of crosses was good.
Those of you that know me outside of my blog and have met me in person pretty much know my answer to every single question is “if God wills it” I do not like to put things in my own hands because it’s not about my own will. I always thought at this time I’d be getting married starting on my family of 15 kids named after all the Saints in the Roman Canon in order. (Yes, I’ve been that much of a nerd, geek, whatever you like to call it). I’d would have been teaching mathematics and physics somewhere and been the teacher that pissed off the teachers’ union. But so I’ve heard there’s a saying that if you want God to laugh you should tell Him your plans.
Turns out half the plan got in, the other half, either is not part of His will or going to be revealed in time. What most people don’t understand about my being here is that it’s still apart of discernment. Discernment is a constant process and will always be in existence in life until the day you die. To what degree this discernment will take place will vary.
Religious life does not suddenly wipe away your weaknesses, your likes or dislikes. I still hate waking up before 10 am, I’m still ridiculously observant and detailed when it comes to my work, I still love math and physics, and I still love watching Mythbusters. One thing that you must do however is die to yourself for the sake of the community. This means not often getting the things that you like, or having to do things that you don’t necessarily want to do. Yes, someone’s got to clean the bathrooms (I have my own, thank God). There are proper forms for everything, including eating at a table (one of the things you learned but NEVER used)
The days are quite structured getting up at 6:30 a M-F, 7:30 S. Morning prayer and Mass follows. Then we have classes at the seminary. After classes are done we have time to study before evening prayer. Then we have dinner, and night prayer and then community time follows. For those of you that are not familiar with praying the Liturgy of the Hours, the Liturgy of the Hours is designed to sanctify the day, and have been prayed since the days of the Apostles’.
There is of course time for recreation, as the body needs refreshment as well. On occasion the friars and us go to the park and play Frisbee, we’ve gone to the art museum of Philadelphia, most of our time is dedicated to our studies. (And those of you that know me, know I’m super dedicated to my work, probably over- dedicated to such practices)
What keeps me going? It’s the grace of God in the Sacraments. We have the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass daily, access to Confession weekly and many devotions that keep us as a community going. Bringing Christ to the oppressed, persecuted and those that are enslaved. It is from our love of God that the love of neighbor flows. The love of God can not be separated from the love of neighbor, Pope Benedict has made numerous references to this.
Thank you for praying for me continuously and I am praying for you all as well. May God bless you abundantly.



  1. Good observations on religious life. Also it’s good to hear your schedule and how you’re doing!

  2. Your schedule doesn’t leave much time for blogging! Which is probably a good thing.

    God bless you as you continue to discover His will, Joe.

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