Friday, May 11, 2007


So my good buddy Stephen, aka Rev. Fife, spent a week being very emergent at monk-ee at a monastery in Cajun Territory. His last words as he recapped the experience was a CHALLENGE... TO ME!!

Well obviously, being one who is up for a challenge I sought out to do just that. The following story is TRUE:

I arrived early in the morning... dew was still on the ground, there was even still a chill in the air, even though the sun had been out for at least two hours. As I pulled into the entrance of the Monastery I saw the gate that said "God Alone" just like I had so many times before. I felt a little uneasy about this visit BUT a challenge is a challenge and I did not know any other way to answer THE CALL.

There was some stirring in the community at this point, monks heading off to do their daily work. As I walked around the campus a few greeted me with smiles, but none stopping to talk- it was off to various jobs. And I had mine to do anyway.
It would not be easy to infiltrate into the hermit's hermitage. In speaking with a couple of the brothers in the past I knew that his cottage was off limits. He had been back there for years, keeping his vow of silence and praying for the world. Like the monastic hermits before him- he stood in a tradition of prayer and solitude that only few people would choose to live.
Upon my last trip to the Abbey at Gethsemani I had picked up a map of the grounds and knew exactly where I needed to go. It would not be easy though- around a lake, behind a walled and secure area and not to mention "monks gone wild" if they were to see me. But I had plotted the entire mission out. I was not leaving until I had outdone Stephen Fife. Oh he is so smug with his Brian McLaren book while being in the presence of monks in compline. "I will show him", I thought to myself.
But the first part of my adventure that morning was to conjure some good mojo. I walked one of the trails into a quiet area where there where only a few statues and some trees. There off to the side was my friend... my patron saint... my brother- St Francis. There I said morning prayer- Francis and Phransus- it was perfect almost like when all the robot cats would come together to create Voltron.

Then it was time. I put on my black monastic habit with ninja facial wrap and nonchucks and headed down a winding path. After several hours I finially made it to a small cottage. It was beautiful how I crept around the cottage- there was no way anyone could hear or see me- I was a model of STEALTH.

I peeked into the window and there was what appeared to be an old man. His beard was grey and long, his hair unkept. He was washing dishes and appeared to be in his own little world. I hid in a bush and part 1 of my plan began. I had some stones in my pocket that I had picked up along the way and I began throwing them at the door. The door slung open and the hermit peered out... NOTHING... He went back in.

Oh I laughed to myself, this is just too easy. Again I did the same thing. And again the hermit peered out... NOTHING... He went back in.

The third time I moved closer to the cottage, then threw the rocks just as before. This time when the door swung open and the hermit peered out I snuck in behind him into the house (i moved like the speed of light). I positioned myself under his bed. I waited there all day. He went on with his "hermit tasks", mostly prayer and then cleaning, and prayer and writing.

It was time. I came out from under the bed. The old hermit was now carving a large walking stick. On the end he was carving what looked like St. Benedict. I was a little fearful that he might know how to use this as a weapon, but I had made it this far and there was no way Stephen was going to outdo me as the king of monk-o-mergentism.

I jumped on top of his bed and yelled!! The hermit froze and then jumped head to the ceiling and yelled out a profanity that I cannot repeat here!!
He came down from the ceiling... I laughed... he just kept screaming swear words at me....

I got silent.... he continued... and continued.... and continued.... until.... he... finally... got.... quiet.... he looked at me.... I looked at him....
I made my way to the door and left him with this advice.... "SHHHH... IT HAPPENS".





revabi said...

You guys are something. This is just too funny.

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