20 August, 2006

the br. thomas letters

Hello Brother Thomas,
This is Natasha Shealy, a friend of The Woodruffs over in North Carolina. Perhaps you remember me, we have met a few times as children, and my folks own the farm next to Jim and Libby.
I am writing you in a funny sort of way. See, I remember you as someone who I would have befriended if destiny hadn’t taken our lives in different directions. Because of this I feel that it is okay to write you now, even though we would be perfect strangers to each other on the street.
I know that you are a monk, and maybe even a priest at this point. An interesting choice
Of vocation, but I understand what it is like to hear Father’s calling.
In the past few years I have renewed my belief in Jesus, and can relate to your marriage to the beloved.
Sometimes I wish that I could vow my life to Christ in entirety like you have, feeling, that in a superficial, selfish way, it make life easier. Because of that I know that he has not called me to in such entirety. But he hasn’t called me in to marriage and children either. Finding my way into my 30’s wondering why I feel half engaged in life causes me pain. I pray for the Lord’s patience, but still have these aching moments of feeling I lack
life’s full commitment.

So, Brother Thomas, the person formerly known as Seth, I am asking you for words, scripture and prayer. I need to understand entirety. I would like to hear about total devotion, and would like to hear about callings. I do not know many people from our generation that feel as strongly as you must. I would love the correspondence.

God Bless,

Natasha Shealy

P.S. Apparently we were at Oxford at the same time. I am certain your adventure there surpasses mine. The only priest I experienced there swigged too much wine, and was
found dancing on the recreation room tables.

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