Along with a copy of The Five Gospels by the Jesus Seminar, and my seminary text by Kurt Aland, Synopsis of the Four Gospels that has the Greek on the left page and the English on the right page, and a stapler, a thumb drive, an extra MacBook my old one that I try not to use any more, and the “ear buds” that tap into the edge of the computer so I can listen to music without driving Linda out of the room, on the smooth and made up bed in our extra bedroom there’s a leaflet about a one-day event in Pensacola next month, sponsored by Baptist Hospital Department of Pastoral Services, “Clergy Health Fair.” Having read it and somewhat found myself, I may go. Or not, I usually don’t do these things. But it says, and I agree, that clergy as a group are “consistently twice as sick as our lay counterparts,” and that “this sickness includes obesity, diabetes, psychosomatic illnesses, depressive disorders and even suicide.” Last evening I was contemplating returning to one of the Jesuit personally guided silent retreats such as those I did several summers ago, I think it was 2012. I’m sensing that it’s time, time again to go for all that it offered and maybe stay a bit longer this time and receive more of what is offered than I bothered receiving last time. I’m thinking to clear the calendar and go. And the pastoral and priestly pressures of the Holy Week schedule seem to underscore that it’s time.
I cheated last time, didn’t I: used my cellphone, wrote and posted my blogpost every morning, even in the places where electronic devices were for good reason forbidden. In Mobile I got the internet password I wasn’t supposed to have by tricking a departing student. In Louisiana, my spiritual director gave it to me innocently, but I had already figured out a way around it. At the retreat center in Georgia, I simply used the Verizon 4G network that was available out there in the boondocks. We’ll see, I’m still thinking on it.
We’re hosting dear old friends, neighbors, for lunch in our new home, and I’m leaving now to go get them at their home down the shoreline.