What is a day like?
The sisters rise as early as they wish. Coffee is always available.
Quietly, one by one, the sisters gather for prayer.
6:15 Our Abbess gives the community her blessing.
A Eucharistic hymn is sung as the Abbess opens the tabernacle doors to display the Monstrance containing our Eucharistic Christ. Our special privilege of daily Eucharistic Exposition was obtained for us by Mother M. Magdalen herself. With our Christ, another day has begun. Our hearts filled with love for our God, for each other, and for our world.
Community prayers follow:
A Morning offering prayer: giving our day to Jesus.
The Angelus: Uniting ourselves with the Mother of God in giving ourselves totally.
The Liturgy of the Hours, continual prayer of the Psalms and scripture, begins.
Exposition of the Blessed Sacrament/personal prayer continue until celebration of the Eucharist.
Sunday is the Lord’s Day
Mass at 9:00. On Sunday, only necessary kitchen work is done. Half hour turns for adoration/ extra time for prayer, study, relaxation.
7:00 Celebration of the Eucharist followed by prayer/ breakfast.
8:25 Midmorning and Midday prayer of the Divine Office.
Followed by half hour turns for adoration on three mornings.
(Thursday: Same as above, followed by a Community Meeting where we consult together.) (Friday: Same as above, followed by Choir Practice.)
9:00 Work time begins. For three hours various kinds of work are done that are needed to keep up the house and help earn our living.
12:00 Dinner with recreation. Followed by: The Angelus, Mid-afternoon Prayer.
All help with dishes.
Afternoon: Time for Prayer / Personal Needs / Study / Novitiate classes/ Some work.
4:00 (Mon. Tues. Wed.) Exposition of the Blessed Sacrament, Rosary, Evening Prayer, Adoration/ Personal Prayer.
4:15 (Thurs.) Exposition of the Blessed Sacrament, Evening Prayer, followed by a Holy Hour for vocations.
4:15 (Friday) Stations of the Cross, Exposition of the Blessed Sacrament, Evening Prayer, Adoration / Personal Prayer.
4:30 (Sat. Sun.) Exposition of the Blessed Sacrament, Evening Prayer, Adoration / Personal Prayer.
5:30 Office of Readings
6:00 Collation (light supper) in silence. We listen to audio or DVD conferences on Scripture, liturgy, theology, spirituality, etc. Followed by the Angelus. All help with dishes.
Exposition of the Blessed Sacrament / Night Prayer with Examine of conscience / Solemn closing of the Blessed Sacrament.
The day comes to a close with our traditional Hymn to Mary.
What Kind of Work do we do?
Maintenance for a spacious, long-established, beautiful building like ours can be never-ending, so we become handy at doing many things. We help in the kitchen and refectory (our dining room), laundry and, of course, there is always housecleaning. Poor Clares are of the working class, so all the sisters’ skills are used to maintain the monastery in the Altar Bread Dept., Liturgical Vestment Dept., Sewing Room, where we make our habits, and our Little Lobby Gift Shoppe.
A receptionist has to be available for our busy phone lines, and she also turns out many computerized calligraphy cards each day. People call to ask for our prayers or to request prayer remembrance cards sent out to family and friends for various occasions. Sister Secretary answers steady correspondence from all over the country. Sister Archivist preserves our long and graced history. Sister Librarian keeps our library in order.
To a great degree much of what we do depends on the talents our sisters bring us. Our Poor Clare RN provides around-the-clock care as needed. We take turns cooking; we each seem to have a specialty or two we enjoy making. We certainly appreciate our two organists who accompany us in our singing. Our sacristan keeps flowers on our adoration altar and everything in our choir and public chapels looking special. Our resident “Green thumbs” cultivate flowers for our altars.
Afternoons provide spaces for contemplative prayer, spiritual reading, study, or the development of personal hobbies, and rest. Holy days and holidays, and monthly retreat day provide longer spaces for these pursuits.
Now that’s what you would call the bare bones of a day in the life of a Poor Clare.