Fr. Joseph Stanichar, pastor of St. John Chrysostom in Seattle was a gracious host. He traveled to the monastery and drove us to his parish. We shared heartfelt conversations with Father Joseph and his parishioner, Elizabeth, who fed us well, then we all went to the beach to watch the sun set behind the Olympic Mountains and topped off the day with ice cream before heading back.
Sr. Julie and I were also given the opportunity to suit up in bee keeper’s gear and were intrigued by the meticulous and dedicated work of the bees as we watched Mother Irene gently tend to them to start a new hive. Although she was extremely careful, she still was stung. We hope to raise bees at our monastery in the future, but we’ll probably have to stock up on Benadryl.
Blossom, the monastic dog, created some excitement one afternoon when she chased six raccoons up a tree. She had fun barking and jumping at the tree and intimidated the cute raccoons as they cuddled together on a large branch, but they obviously saw no humor in it.
We are grateful to Holy Theophany Monastery and to Fr. Joseph and Elizabeth for their love, prayer and support. We still have a few more places to visit before we discern where God wants us to be for formation, but we continue to trust in the unfailing love and infinite wisdom of our Bridegroom and gaze higher knowing our help will come from Him.