I remember a number of years ago when we were still living in the mountains of southwestern Pennsylvania. Sue (my wife) had an appointment down in Uniontown, at the bottom of the mountain. I drove her to town, dropped her off and then went for a drive. After running a couple of errands, I thought I would find somewhere to relax and spend some time in much needed prayer and meditation. Having decided this, I drove onto the grounds of a monastery and retreat center that is located in town.
Before this, I had never explored those grounds. They are truly beautiful. This land had once been the estate of one of the local coal barons who prospered in the area decades ago. There is a stately, almost majestic quality to the landscape. Ancient trees overhang neatly trimmed lawns and dot the ridges of rolling hillocks. Scattered among these lovely old trees are a number of shrines and statues of various saints. There are also park benches placed at various spots, inviting you to stop and meditate. I took advantage of one such spot. Continue reading