A new year approaches with a coming new decade. The Davids have so many new things in our lives that we can scarcely keep up with ourselves. First, we have a new address:
5499 East State Hwy 29, Georgetown, TX 78626 USA
Second, we have a new home (the chaplain’s house at Our Lady of Guadalupe Priory):
Third, we have new ministries: Peter is Chaplain for the Dominican Sisters of Mary Mother of the Eurcharist, assists as requested in the Diocese of Austin, and celebrates the Divine Liturgy most weeks for the Austin Byzantine Catholic Community, as well as continuing as New Testament Editor for Word Biblical Commentary. Judy continues her ministry of spiritual direction and counsel, mostly over the phone. (She offers individual and very small group spiritual retreats in our house, which is a former convent with its own chapel). The second edition of her Pause, Pray, and Play(which brings her spiritual journey up to date) is expected before Christmas. Together we host and lead a (small) cell group for the Brothers and Sisters of Charity, Domestic.
This was not our plan for the year. We spent the first half of the year busily and happily ministering in Houston, based in our apartment in St Clare Monastery. In June Judy was brought up to Calgary to visit our daughter Elaine and her family there. We had no idea that we would meet Elaine and Greg next time in Georgetown (near Austin), Texas in October. Judy and her sister had gone to El Cajon California for what proved to be a last visit to Judy’s sister-in-law, Harriet Bouchillon. Judy also went to the Brothers and Sisters of Charity Domestic Leadership Gathering in April. We planned an August trip to St Stephen, New Brunswick, to visit our daughter Gwenda and her family, a trip that ended up with more serious purposes, including Peter’s driving our son-in-law Brent back from Saint John twice after eye examinations which indicated that he is going blind from wet macular degeneration. But the start of that trip was altered by the death of Harriet (widow of Judy’s younger brother) on July 24 and her funeral on August 3. The end of the trip had the suspense of an email asking us to make an appointment with the Vicar General of the Personal Ordinariate of the Chair of St Peter. We saw him on August 20 and he proposed that we move to Georgetown TX, for the Dominican Sisters had requested that Bishop Lopes send them a chaplain. We visited the Priory in Georgetown the next weekend and decided to accept the appointment. We had our goods moved on September 13. And we did our final move as soon as Peter finished up his commitments in Houston on September 29. It was breathtakingly fast. Other than Peter’s making a quick trip back to Houston in October for a final Sunday ministry and his going to Mundelein IL for the Ordinariate’s Clergy Assembly in late October, we have been here since then. (He cancelled out of the meetings of the Evangelical Theological Society and the Society of Biblical Literature due to the expense and a lack of time and energy and John Michael Talbot told us not to go to the early October Gathering of the Brothers and Sisters of Charity Domestic, rightly stating that with the move it would have been too exhausting.) The bonus we received with this move was two visits from Judy’s sister in October that helped us settle (and another planned visit over Christmas) and the fact that Judy has a cousin and his wife in Georgetown and her 98-year-old-aunt lives with them. Yet another bonus was the fact that Elaine and Greg had already planned a late anniversary trip to Austin and then that Ian and his two children are scheduled to arrive here from Mission, British Columbia, just after Christmas and to stay until after New Year’s.
So we have moved for the 26th time in our 52 years of marriage and are living in the country on the east edge of Georgetown in, as Judy says, “the most lovely home I ever dreamed of,” and are still in reasonable health (Judy still has congestive heart failure, but is does not seem to have become worse due to the move and her knee problem has been manageable, although she often uses a cane; Peter does have a lower back issue, but can manage it by means of exercises taught him during physical therapy – needless to say, we used a mover to pack and move).
We are thankful for the gifts God has given us this year, all based on the gift of his Son, which we anticipate in Advent and celebrate on Christmas. We look forward to continuing to serve him actively until he receives us at our death or returns to set this world to rights in the coming of his kingdom. Of course, that simply leads to continuing joyful service throughout the coming ages.
Thanks be to God.
Warmest Advent Greetings
Peter and Judy
Fr. Peter H Davids Judith L Davids
5499 E State Highway 29, Georgetown Texas 78626