When I worked at the Monastery, they had this lovely small museum, with some really remarkable artifacts in it. On the one wall, they had this arch made, with twelve small niches, these were used to hold some really fabulously, handmade boxes that contained a Relic of various Saints. A Relic is a small artifact from a Saint, such as a piece of bone.
One box was placed upon the Altar, to pay respects to a particular saint. Each month they would place the delicate, beautiful, box upon it's shelf, and take a different one, so that every Saint would have a month dedicated to them respectively.
I used to love to clean the museum, and delicately remove each box, carefully and study the unique carvings, insets, etc...they were sealed shut. Never to be opened. I would carefully dust each one individually, and place it back in it's respective place.
Well, wouldn't you know it. Naturally the secular world has no understanding of this, and one of the Brother's sounded the Alarm, that all the boxes were emptied, and the Relics were stolen. "No Way" I screamed, how could that be"?
What would possess someone to do such a thing? And for what purpose? I mean did someone think they were like a magic wand, or rabbit's foot? Could they possibly have thought that without the Relics provenance they were merely small pieces of bone? Go figure that one out! lol lol lol I would be afraid a lightening bolt would come down on my head. Or God would yell down, "Hey Bonehead, put those back"! "What? Did you take a stupid pill this morning"? I was truly dumbfounded. I mean wouldn't you be afraid to do such a thing? and for what purpose. That baffles me to this day.
Everytime I dusted the empty boxes, it made me heart sick. I was so saddened. I said to Brother Vincent, "I am glad I am here, and am slowly removing myself from the Secular world"!
His reply was, "If you think this is bad, one day when we went to Mass we came out and all our furniture was gone from our visiting area"! OH NO! What the heck is wrong with people anyway. After that, they closed all Monastery doors, and you had to ring the bell to have someone let you in. Can you blame them?
When I walked throught those doors, on one of the greatest days of my life, I realized that Secular ways, and Monastic ways are waaaaaaaaay different worlds. Slowly through working with them I learned that what seems so important to the Secular world, means nothing to the Monastic world. I truly abandoned my old ways, and was reborn into the person I actually was meant to be. In other words the World no longer dictated who I should be, I learned that to God, just being what he meant me to be was what was truly important.
I often think of those Relics, and ponder just who would do such a thing, and why?