Bodies and Souls In Ordinary Time

As I look around the blogosphere lately, I find infrequent postings and dwindling comments.  This is perfectly understandable, since many of us are enjoying summer after a long, hard winter, and entertaining visitors from afar.  For those whose winter has arrived, perhaps they are cozying up more frequently near the fireplace, sipping hot drinks and getting to bed earlier every night.
I think this is a good thing.  Apart from considerations of our natural seasons, I hope it is a reflection of the fact that we are in the liturgical season of Ordinary Time.  Liturgically, Ordinary Time means ordered or numbered time, a period when priests predominantly wear green vestments signifying hope and growth.

Ordinary Time is the season for steady and unhurried nourishment of body and soul, a time when the anticipation of major feasts such as Christmas and Easter are not the focal point of our attention, with their attendant periods of Advent and Lent for which so many of us make specific plans.

As this entry at Catholic Culture tells us, Ordinary Time is a time to “pasture” in “vast verdant meadows”.  So let us take this time to enter into Christ’s mystery through the people and the creation around us.  From my point of view, since it is summer here and the house is buzzing off and on with visiting family and friends, I just want to relax into and sanctify the changing of bed linens, the table-setting, the floor-sweeping, the lawn-mowing, the hedge-clipping and the flower-watering, all the while absorbing the chirping of sparrows and the scurrying of baby chipmunks.

I want to nourish my body with fresh fruits and vegetables – local blueberries and farmers’-market corn. I want to feed my soul daily with contemplative prayer, all else such as Lectio Divina, spiritual audio or video resources and blog-reading being added at my own pace, stopping whenever my spirit draws me to simply sit and gaze at tree limbs, cone flowers or cardinals, allowing the Holy Spirit to enlighten my heart and my mind as He pleases.

Yes, it’s Ordinary Time, and I am tired and hungry.



12 thoughts on “Bodies and Souls In Ordinary Time

  1. Girl, you could make breathing in and out sound marvelous and new. (And I sincerely hope someone offered Jesus handfuls of blueberries like those in that graphic.)

  2. Wonderful, Gabrielle, and just at the right time for someone like me, who can easily start feeling guilty about not keeping up with things blogospherical…

    We so need all the blessings of Ordinary Time – thank you for being one of them!


  3. We’ll go find God in the domestic then, round the table and in the folding of linens….I was just thinking priests wear green in Ordinary time – vast verdant meadows…

  4. Sounds like there is nothing very ordinary about Ordinary time.

    This is my favorite time of the year. I love the hot, humid, lazy days of summer. I love the background symphony provided by cicadas. I love the palette of color provided by perennials.

    You are right, Gabrielle. This is a season that lends itself to contemplation. The liturgical and seasonal calendars conspire to let us rest in the Lord and let him speak.

  5. I don’t know how i missed that line first time round, Gabrielle, about the green vestments – what Terry says about the cicadas reminds me of last week, stepping off the bus in the middle of Rome and hearing them for the first time – persistence would seem to be their motto. The closest we come here are grasshoppers – second cousins once removed?

  6. I just inflated/filled with water a 3-ring pool for a gorgeous boy’s 4th party on Saturday (and watched the horseflies be attracted to it) and am looking at delayed presents from daughter’s b-day to be opened tonight, finally, and may blow up a few balloons and get something buffet-ish for supper, since she doesn’t want a cake. This is my blueberries, my folding and ironing of clean linens. I hardly note ordinary time as being extraordinary, but I guess it is. O, but how awful to think it’s winter for someone –Australia, right? Ow.

  7. “Tree limbs and cardinals…”

    A perfect way to contemplate the divine nature of the ‘ordinary,’ and God’s self-expression which lies therein.

    Beautiful post!


  8. Ooooo those berries look sooooooo gooooood. We are headed into Mennonite territory in next week and we shall be looking for those fruit, flower and veggie stands.

  9. Hi everybody. Thank you for all these wonderful comments – you’ve really made my “late evening”! Can you believe we’re already at the 16th Sunday in Ordinary Time? I don’t know where the first 15 went!!!

    Carol, hope the birthday festivities went well. I thought you were going to say you were filling water balloons!

    Mike, you’re very sweet; I don’t think my family would always say I’m a blessing, but I’m certainly blessed!

    Ann and Terry, I’ve always been a little confused about cicadas. Crickets give a nice chirping sound at night here, but if cicadas are those things that give out a prolonged buzzing sound, we usually hear those only on really scorching hot days (my mom used to call them tree-toads or tree-frogs, but I don’t know if that’s the same thing).

    Pia, I so appreciate your offering to send the flying friars; but I must admit I took a little poetic license in my post. I don’t actually do the lawn-mowing myself (you may recall, I tip over quite often for no apparent reason, so it’s not really good to have me near running machinery), but I’m with hubby or son in spirit when they cut the grass, “supervising”, so to speak! Still, I’d love to have the flying friars over; too bad there are no more beds left; but maybe they enjoy sleeping on the roof?

    Erin, thanks for your lovely comment, and welcome to the Haven. We are the goofiest bunch of contemplatives you may ever come across. 🙂 I really love these people.

    Owen, lucky you! I hope you and the family have a marvelous time. Our neighbours had to go away this week and told us to pick everything we wanted off their raspberry bushes. I offered to pick them and freeze them for them, but they said no, no, no, eat them, so…. 🙂

  10. Some cicadas have a 17-year cycle. They just disappear/reappear. They are big fat bugs whose wings are twice as long as their bodies — I think they molt, too, as we’ve found what appears to be cicada shells. In a word, YUCK. There were so many once when we visited the folks in NYC, I’d thought the power lines were humming, lol, and asked if it was safe to walk to the store under them. I entertain my family every chance I get. I once inquired what PYO apples were, and if we’d ever had any. Are they native to our state? etc. Family was absolutely incredulous.

    Water balloons, moi? Rats, I hadn’t even thought of that..

  11. C, merci beaucoup for the gruesome bug info!!! And don’t feel silly; I just sat here for quite a few minutes trying to figure out what PYO apples were, before the light finally dawned…

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