Not much posting lately. To be honest, I've settled into a pretty plain and scheduled existence here in Assisi.
I get up at some point between 4:30 and 5. Morning Prayer is at 6:15, followed by a half-hour meditation period which I have been using to pray the Office of Readings. Then there's Mass at 7:15.
I've often been the principal celebrant, and sometimes the only priest. The local priests in the house go out in the morning to offer Mass at other convents and chapels. I don't know if my being here frees up someone else to do that, or if there wouldn't be a Mass at home if I weren't here. In any case, I'm happy for the opportunity to pray and practice. I haven't had to try to preach yet, but I know the day will come sooner than I would choose. Though the friars open the door to the chapel, I've never seen anyone come in. I guess when you're this close to the basilica of St. Francis, why wouldn't you go there instead? But if you're walking by, it's the second to last door on the south side as you go down the Via San Francesco toward the basilica.
The morning Mass here at the friary is sometimes a very international affair. The other day I looked around at six of us friars and noted that only one was a native speaker of Italian. Apart from him, the other native languages were English (2), Polish, Portuguese, and Spanish.
After Mass I go to the refectory to get my espresso and my biscuit and then I get ready for school. I walk up to the school with a prayer and rest break at Santa Maria sopra Minerva. Then it's four hours of Italian class. The class ends at one o'clock, just as the friars begin the day's main meal back at the friary. So I walk home and into the refectory, deliver my best buon appetito to the friars, endure the bemused quiz about what I learned in school, and eat.
After the meal I take my book bag and go back to my room. I pray None and then think about what I have to do for the rest of the day. There's homework, emails, praying through the readings for the next day's Mass, and usually a few other things and some studying before it's time to go back to chapel at 6:45. After another half-hour of meditation, we have Evening Prayer and then supper. By the time that's done and cleaned up and I get back to my room, it's almost nine and all I want to do is read a little bit, pray Night Prayer and go to sleep.
So that's my life right now. Blessed for sure, but pretty plain.