17 December 2010
On Keys: Though hotels and other institutions have replaced keys with magnetic cards the key ring is still a symbol of the busy-ness in one’s life. As a kid I really wanted a key ring like dad's. There was something grown up about having a ring of keys to jingle. Over the past few days I’ve been returning keys. The keys for the sacristy at the hospital chapel, my office, and the physical exam lab are all off the ring making it much less annoying in my pocket. Over the next week I’ll return the keys to my home parish, my sister’s house and, finally, the community and my room. I think the only keys on the key ring will be to the storage cage in the basement and the locked filing cabinet in my room (duplicates will be elsewhere). Oh, and the USB drive, one of the world’s great inventions.
As keys disappear the roles I’ve been filling over the past years are either disappearing or going on hiatus. Some I will resume upon returning from tertianship but others are questionable. The lack of keys for life in the States will, I hope, be reflected in an attitude of indifference toward that life that will allow me to immerse myself in the tertianship, and particularly, in the long retreat. The keys and the roles they indicated were sometimes distractions.
It is getting to be late in the evening. A few things are in the dryer. The room looks a little better though I still would not allow anyone who did not know me to enter. After I pack the car for an early departure tomorrow morning it will be time to say the evening office. Tonight the Magnificat will be introduced and closed with the first of the seven great “O Antiphons.” There is something both exciting and consoling when the Church recites or chants these antiphons. Tonight we begin: “O Wisdom, O holy Word of God, you govern all creation with your strong yet tender care. Come and show your people the way to salvation.”