Today, our diocesan staff made their annual retreat at St. Walburga Abbey and Retreat Center in Virginia Dale, Colorado. It was a beautiful day, filled with many blessings, not the least of which was the beautiful scenery enjoyed on the way to and from St. Walburga, including these beautiful mule deer seen to the left. We saw several group of mule deer on the way home, and plenty of antelope. Soon, the deer, antelope, elk and moose will be having their young, along with all the other wildlife of the area. I think I will never tire of the beauty of this region of the country! Even though the locals keep speaking about the wind of Wyoming, I’m more impressed with the amount of clear blue skies and sunshine we receive. The foot of snow we received last Saturday is now nearly gone, and we are expecting warm temperatures throughout the week.
Almost all our staff made the trip to Colorado for the day, save two dedicated souls who stayed behind to make sure payroll got out this week. Thanks Jim and Larry! The rest of the pastoral team was in high spirits, and ready for a visit to the Benedictine sisters of St. Walburga. This community of Benedictine sisters was founded from Bavaria, Germany in Boulder, Colorado in 1935. Because their community was growing, they needed to find new space, so in 1997 they moved to their present location in Virgina Dale, Colorado. It is a lovely setting. We were warmly greeted in traditional Benedictine hospitality and enjoyed the atmosphere, the wonderful meal provided by the sisters, a couple talks from Sr. Hildegard Dubnick, OSB on Welcoming Christ & Hospitality in the Benedictine Tradition. There were a couple of opportunities in the day for quiet. Some chose to spend time in prayer in the chapel, while others made use of the beautiful day and walked around the grounds. Some may have even shopped in the local gift shop! Everyone simply enjoyed the opportunity to rest, pray, reflect, and enjoy each others company. Our day ended with Mass and we were on our way home.
I feel truly blessed to have such a great staff working on behalf of the People of God of the Diocese of Cheyenne. They are people of faith, and they work hard and well together. For the most part, their efforts go unnoticed by the vast majority of the people they serve, but I know that we would be in a world of “hurt” if not for them. As always, the Word of God provided for the Mass of the day reminded us that we are simple servants. We are here to serve the people of the parishes, and serve as a link to the broader Church. “You have one master, the Christ. The greatest among you must be your servant. Whoever exalts himself will be humbled; but whoever humbles himself will be exalted.” (Mt 23:10-12) The Diocese of Cheyenne is well-served by a wonderful group of people, and I am proud to serve along side each of them!0