Posted February 20, 2006 in MH Edmonton AB:
Notes From Near and Far: Edmonton, Alberta

by Arthur Connick, Marian Centre Edmonton.

Fr. Tom Rowland and I are new arrivals in this house, and one thing I would say about it is that this is a busy house. Some days I feel like I am being shot out of cannon into a day filled with the phone ringing, two or three different doorbells ringing, volunteers (sometimes up to 20) all around the house, lots of things going on, and then anywhere from 80 to 307 people here for a hot meal at noon.

It’s quite a change from starting my day with Lisa, Lee, Martina, Noreen, Jessie, Jane, and Nora. (Those are cows in the milking parlor at the farm in Combermere!)

There is a lot of suffering in this house: in us, in our volunteers, and in the people who come for food and clothing. But, to use someone else’s words, it is also a house of mercy, and I have been experiencing both of these—both suffering and mercy.

We had a retreat given by Fr. Sharkey and Andrée Hammel, and Fr. Tom had been giving lots of retreats and days of recollection in various places.

Another thing I can say is that this house is well supported by the generosity of the people of Edmonton, with their money, their goods, and themselves. We have a lot to be thankful for.

I’ll finish this by saying that Marian Centre is far from being your usual house. But then, Madonna House is far from your usual vocation, and to serve Christ in this world today is far from the usual.


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