Saturday, July 1, 2017


The desire to leave something of ourselves behind to the next generation is part of the human condition. We ask, what will I be remembered for? The saints are remembered for their holiness which was witnessed by many in their times.  Some wrote of their lives, others had someone write about them (eg. St. Marianne of Molokai). 

Whatever it is, we want a part of the life we lived, the work we did, to be handed down. Sometimes I ask myself, I do this now, I save this, but who in the next generation will pick it up? Will it be worth anything? I think of our Mother Jerome who left  perhaps thousands of pages and notes of her many works, from herbs and poetry to Christology. You might have to write your memoirs to ensure that the answer to both questions is the same.

One of our nuns here at Our Lady of the Rock has written her own life, which stands as a memorial of her own giveness to us and others.

I quote the back cover:

THE CHORD OF LONGING explores a musical scholar’s search for meaning, love, and acceptance through decades as a single mother, a Marxist, a musician, and finally, a member of a monastic community. In frank and honest language, Mother Felicitas explains how that long search led her through extraordinary pain and difficulty, profound questioning, and finally toward everlasting and perfect love. The title is based on a chord of yearning—the famous chord that begins Wagner’s opera, Tristan and Isolde. Writes the author: “This chord’s dissonance, this tension, demands to be resolved.” It is the perfect metaphor to describe her own quest for resolution, beautifully described in this personal tale of tribulation and transcendence.

Mother Felicitas teaching Cate herbs

Mother Felicitas Curti, OSB, PhD in musicology and scholar of Gregorian chant, lives in a small monastic community on a remote island in Washington State tending an herb garden and spreading joy with her violin playing and musical teachings. The path that took her to this Benedictine community and spiritual fulfillment is both rocky and remarkable. She was a rebellious child, bohemian teenager, and, in her twenties, a political revolutionary, publishing articles in radical socialist papers and journals. In her thirties she explored the New Age culture while raising two sons and teaching music history and theory in college. Always, she was questioning everything, especially herself. Her passion for a more just society and for an abundant, pure love guided her even as her life began unraveling around her—a life she examines with an open heart and
unflinching eye in her riveting memoir, The Chord of Longing.

 Her book is available at Amazon as well as Our Lady of the Rock.

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