You may have figured out by now that I am not in Rome this summer! And actually I am happy about it. Not happy not to be in Rome. There is nothing to be unhappy about being in Rome. But happy to be here instead. Actually, I have been in Nashville very little the last two weeks. Last week was a vacation week with my family at the beach. This week, I have been at Totus Tuus training at St. Bernard's Abbey in Cullman, AL. (I seem to be spending a lot of time in the Heart of Dixie these days!)
I have to confess that we began Totus Tuus in the Diocese of Nashville "on a wing and a prayer" four summers ago. What was I thinking? Well, I was thinking that Totus Tuus is something very good; and that anything worth doing is worth doing poorly. Not that the missionaries and directors of Totus Tuus have done poorly -- but the priest "in charge" has! It is kind of hard to run something when you are on another continent. So I am glad to be here and not in Rome.
Actually, now that I am involved in the way that I should be, I am even more convinced of the goodness of Totus Tuus -- especially for the team members. It is a great program of summer formation! One of the things that a university chaplain worries about is the effect of summer on the spiritual lives of the students. Usually it is not good or at least a struggle. Not for Totus Tuus missionaries! They are getting great formation and community, as well as pouring themselves out in the apostolate. And they love it!
It is sort of like a junior FOCUS...speaking of which, I received a text message at about 11 last night that our newest Vanderbilt FOCUS missionary, Laura Scharmer, will be serving at Columbia University in New York. It is about time that the Ivy League got some religion! I think that I like that :-)