Thoughts from a young theologian

Posts tagged “christmas

I’m still here!! Merry Christmas by the way

Just to show you guys that I’m still alive (barely) and kicking, I’ll make a very quick post. After Christmas, which I spent in a parish I was assigned to in Rouen, France this year, I’ve been back at Namur and since essentially early January have hit the books really hard. I’ve got about 8 massive exams that start up on Tuesday so it’s been really really tough for me to find time to put up a post.

But seeing as this is a post that I’ve wanted to do since Christmas, I figured I should greet all of you a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year before the Christmas season ends with the Baptism of our Lord today… So Merry Christmas and Happy New Year! c”,) I’ve added a few pictures for you from my travels… the first being the nativity scene in Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris this year. It changes every year and this year, they had this style of creche. The second photo is a quick view of the Rouen cathedral with the Christmas market up in front. Unfortunately, the facade is currently being worked on so you can’t see more of it but it’s a gorgeous ancient building… It’s the same cathedral that the painter Claude Monet worked on with his impressionist artwork. Finally, the last photo, once more from Paris shows the city’s newest, biggest attraction. I never thought I’d seen a lineup this long for this exotic cuisine!!! I’ll post more once exams finish next week… in the meantime, take care and God bless!!!

Nativity Scene at Notre Dame

Rouen in ChristmasLong line up for the newest big thing in PAris!


Back to School!!!

So I’m back here in the abbey… I got back on Tuesday night and, as is always the case with the monks here who never like wasting time, the next day, we had a full day of classes… Heheehehehe Today though, because we are celebrating the feast of the Epiphany, we don’t have any classes so I’m kind of using this day to catch up to my studies and to rest up a bit. I’m actually sick again! I don’t know if there’s something about this place or if there’s a message that’s being sent to me from above but I haven’t been well here in a few months… It has been so good to get a bit of a day off though to rest up… I slept super early last night and spent most of the morning in bed too… c”,)


Part of the reason why I’m sick is because of how I spent my last few days before coming back to school. I was running around all over the place trying to meet people and go out for coffee! I met with about 2-3 people per day at different locations around the Greater Vancouver area… Also, the day before coming back to the seminary, I decided to go up to Whistler for some snowboarding lessons. Being in here, we don’t have the opportunity to go out to the mountains so I really wanted to get a little bit of boarding in before coming back. I didn’t regret it at all the day of… It was an absolutely gorgeous day at Whistler. The sun was up but it wasn’t too hot–in fact, there was a nice little breeze… The other thing was, this being the day before work for most people, there weren’t that many people up at Whistler. Most people were taking it really easy (probably what I should have done too)… In any case, I’ve included also some pictures from the mountain… Hehehehe I had a really great time and I learned so much new things from my instructor. But what ended up happening afterwards was I exerted myself a bit too much… I was really sore the next day but that was also the day I needed to prepare to move back to Mission so I ended up exerting myself a little bit more, trying to get things all ready and packed. So when I got up the next day and ran into a full day of classes, I wasn’t physically able to really stand up to all that. Please pray for me so I can get better soon… c”,)


The other place that my family and I visited a little bit before vacation ended was the Bright Nights at Stanley Park exhibit. It’s very similar to the lights exhibit I showed you of the grotto in Portland but this one has a lot less of those religious figures and symbolisms that the grotto had… There were more of the Santas and Grinches lighting up the park here… There were also quite a few people out there because it was the last day for the show before it would close down for the year. There’s also a nice, little train that goes around a small part of the park to other lights that are inaccessible to people… We weren’t able to ride it though because the lineup was way too long… I’ve included some pictures from that here too…

Anyways, other than my sickness, there’s not much yet that I can report from here in Mission. We’re all back and trying to re-settle into our super ordered and scheduled lives. We’ve also got a lot of the bishops from Western Canada over here for their annual retreat. I’ve only seen one of them so far, but I’ve heard we’re expecting close to 20 of them to come. That’ll be interesting…
Next week, we’ve also got a little retreat with Fr. Fernando Mignone as our retreat master.. I’ll let you guys know how that goes soon!! Take care and God bless!!

Christmas vacation

It’s sooooooooooo good to be on vacation… I’ve been away
from the seminary for over a week now. It’s a great place and I’ve
been learning so much from just being there but at the same time,
it’s always good to get away for a little bit and spend some time
with family and friends!!! Sorry for the lack of updates but I’ve
been making the most of my away time. Just before Christmas, the
day after I got back, my parents and sister and I drove out to
Portland Oregon for an overnight trip. We went to a couple of
really cool places that I had been to before with friends this past
summer. The first place we went was a large used book store called
Powell Books. It’s located just around downtown Portland and it’s a
HUGE store. It takes up a whole city block and is a few stories
high. I was here over the summer too but at that time, I seriously
underestimated the place. I thought of just browsing through the
selection that they had but when we were there, we only spent an
hour there and I got very very quickly overwhelmed. This time
though, I knew what to expect so I made a little list of books to
look for (including some rare ones) and was able to spend two hours
there!! It was fantastic!! One can easily spend the day getting
lost in that store but I NEEDED to get out after two hours because
I am just a poor seminarian and have a limited budget. Left there
for a day, I’d probably be spending hundreds on books easily!!!
Here are a few pictures I took of the place but these pictures
certainly don’t do it any justice. If you’re ever around Portland,
this is one stop I highly recommend!!!

The other place
we went to was the Portland Grotto. It’s a gorgeous place tucked
away and run by the servite monks, some of whom I ran into this
time. This Christmas season, they had the place all decked out with
lights!! It looked really gorgeous but borderline too commercial. I
loved the little life-size creche they had at the center too!! They
also had lots of visiting choirs and roaming quartets. But the
problem was, there was also so many people… It was pretty
crowded… It was also really cold out there when we went so we
only walked around a bit before heading out… I tried to say my
office of readings at the church but it was way too packed with
people listening to the performing choirs that, even though I got
it done, it was really difficult to concentrate. I don’t know about
this… I kinda liked it because I love Christmas decorating but I
also left with a slightly bad taste in my mouth because of the
over-extravagance and the crowds…

One other place
we went to, the next day after spending an evening in a little
motel in Portland was a mall just off the I5 called the Southcenter
mall… For those of you who don’t know, this mall, in addition to
being really big, is the new home for Jolibee!!! Jolibee is my all
time favorite Filipino fast food joint!! The only place on the west
coast that had it before this new location opened up was Los
Angeles and I certainly would not be willing to make the 20 hour
road trip for Jolibee. But this is soooo close!! I kinda broke my
mini fast a bit and pigged out on the Yumburgers with cheese and
the Chicken Joys!! Oooooooohhhhh IT WAS SOOOOOOOOOOO GOOD!!!! If
you’re ever in the area, this is definitely a place to check out…
And for dessert, you can go over to the cheesecake factory with its
super super duper uber good cakes. I highly recommend their
tiramisu… It melts in your mouth… Mmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm

One last little
thing to mention before my next update is that I kinda visited the
abbey on Christmas eve, hoping to get there in time for vespers
(which I didn’t because I didn’t realize vespers started earlier)
and to see the Christmas decorations. The monks don’t normally put
them up until, probably, Christmas eve itself. They had a nice
little creche right next to the adoration chapel. It was really
cute… Anyways, that’s all for right now!! I hope you and your
family will pass a very merry Christmas and a happy new year!! Take

PS. I’m in town
until the 4th!!! Message me if you want to meet up!!!