One of my weeks I take off during the summer is dedicated to continuing education. This year I did two things. First of all, I participated in a four-day spiritual retreat at the Monastery of the Holy Spirit out in Conyers. Many folks have no idea there is a Trappist monastery so close to Atlanta. If you have never been, I encourage you to go and spend the day. There is a great museum, an amazing gift shop, and you can attend one of the worship services in the Abbey that take place five times a day. You can even spend the night at the retreat house if you want a quiet time for reflection. My retreat was called "The Spirituality of Imperfection" -- which was perfect for me. Starting this Sunday, I will be sharing a series of messages I am calling "Perfect Imperfection." We will explore how to face perfectionistic tendencies gracefully.
The second goal of my continuing education time was to discover how to expand my digital presence. In today's world, I am aware of how many of us connect digitally. I asked my social-media savvy adult kids and my wife to advise me as to my options. I chose to start "tweeting." (Go to Twitter online if you don't know what is.) If you are on Twitter, you can follow me: "@GrayNors". I will be sending out regular messages such as recommended articles or books, inspiring quotes, or updates related to JCPC. I hope to get as many "followers" as I can. When we break ground this fall on the new multipurpose building, it will be a great way to keep folks up-to-date on the daily progress of the construction.
I am grateful to be able to go away for a time of spiritual renewal, knowing that we have such a fine staff here at JCPC. When I leave, I have no doubts that our staff will handle things well in my absence. Next time you see one of our staff members, I hope you will thank them for their faithful service.
Below is a prayer I saw displayed when we visited the Chapel of the Angels at the National Museum of the Mighty Eighth Air Force just outside of Savannah.
Prayer for Today
Almighty God, Who has blessed us with the will and energy to do our duty, we praise You for our comrades whose death kept freedom living. We praise You also for giving us the years we have lived since their departure. We pray that You will strengthen and sustain our devotion to truth and justice, so that we may be faithful benefactors of their sacrifice. Continue Your mercy to our comrades; keep them in Your care; and bring us at least into Your presence there to rejoice eternally. Amen.
-Very Reverend Robert C. Martin
Dean of the Cathedral, Retired