Tomorrow at 4:00 PM I fly out of Melbourne to Singapore, and then on to London for two days, then finally to Assisi for a three week conference on St. Francis. Hopefully I will be learning much and teaching a little, mainly on Thomas Merton and some connections between Francis and the best of the Benedictine tradition.
If I were a better ascetic I would not take the iBook, not have checked out internet cafes in Assisi, not planned to keep in touch with the world around the campus while across the world, but I am not. A trip like this is too good not to be shared!
I was in Assisi two years ago for a week and it was wonderful. I am suspicious when people talk about places that are “holy,” but Assisi is a special place by any definition: I walked into the little church that Francis rebuilt, and where Clare died, knelt to pray, and thanksgiving exploded out of me like fireworks. That holy place enabled me to see again how many places are holy. I am looking forward to this trip.