I received an email from one of the sisters advising me to arrive before evening Mass at 5.50, meaning I need to catch the 15.38 from Clapham Junction to Arundel, arriving in time for the service.
I have no idea what to expect from the weekend and I’m feeling ill-prepared. The week has been a busy one and I realise that I’ve given very little thought to what a weekend of prayer, contemplation and solitude will entail, or what it will be like after such a busy week.
I get the impression that Poor Clares Arundel will be a good starting point for my 12 week retreat programme. I managed to snatch a few spare moments today to watch some short videos on YouTube. The community is really quite progressive – they have put together some interviews of themselves talking about their lives in the convent. You can watch them here.
Having watched the videos, I’m feeling a bit more tuned in to it all. I’m skipping my cousin’s birthday party tonight and another best friend’s birthday do tomorrow eve… how’s that for commitment!
I suppose this is what taking a retreat is all about though, cutting loose from the usual business (there is always something going on at the weekend, right?) and retreating some place a bit quieter – in my case, a convent.
I’m currently wondering whether to take my mobile phone with me. My iPod – I can just about give that up for a weekend, but my phone? I will probably take it, just in case, and turn it on maybe just a couple of times during the weekend.
Perhaps by the end of the 12 months I won’t think twice about leaving this little device behind.
I wonder if they have wireless in the convent? (just joking).