Above: Laudie-dog begging me not to abandon her.
Below: She knew that a storm was brewing, that I would abandon her.
Below: Laudie-dog telling the storm what she thinks about it.
Result: I left Holy Souls Hermitage early afternoon on Sunday, heading into the deep South, perhaps two and half thousand feet below the hermitage, for the sake of events involving priestly solidarity. Totally awesome. Truly. I returned in time to catch the tail end of Brevard’s largest cemetery’s Memorial Day ceremonies. I was back to the hermitage within twenty-four hours.
Discovery: While I had left a veritable mountain of food and veritable oceans of water for Laudie-dog, she hadn’t touched any of it. She had gone on hunger strike the second I left, knowing that when I put out a mountain of food, it means that I won’t be around for a little while.
Aftermath: When I returned, Laudie-dog treated me with disdain, as if to say: “How could you abandon me for hours on end? How could you? How could you?” It took a great deal of sweet talking and petting to get her to eat even the tastiest of treats. Meanwhile, I’m told that she protected the hermitage with great ferocity the entire night that I was gone. Good girl, Laudie-dog!
Analogy with a dog’s life: When Jesus left us to ascend to heaven to go to His Heavenly Father, He did not abandon us, but even if we are happy for Him to go to His, that is, Our Heavenly Father, still, I mean, you know, it was great when He walked this earth. Yes, He is with us Body, Blood, Soul and Divinity in the Most Blessed Sacrament, but, still… I mean… If you know what I mean…
And yet, we know that He is with us, and that He will return, and that He is pleased to have us going about our duties while He is “gone”. Even Laudie-dog had enough sense, and enough trust in me, that I would come back, and that she should meanwhile continue to protect the hermitage with all that she had. And she did. She was sorrowful to the point of going on a fast, but she had enough sense to carry on.
Are we as good as Laudie-dog? Sure, we are devastated that the Lord is not walking this earth us, though He is with us in the Most Holy Sacrifice, in the Most Blessed Sacrament, and by way of the indwelling of the Most Holy Trinity by way of sanctifying grace. “They will fast in those days,” says Jesus. But, instead of running away from the impending storm while Jesus is with His Heavenly Father — with Him all the time asking us if there will be any faith when He returns — we are to be about our Heavenly Father’s work on this earth of encouraging souls to walk with our Heavenly Father as members of the Body of Christ, protecting the vineyard from nefarious beasts.
Even when it seems that the whole world is going to hell, it’s then that we are to be as fierce in goodness and kindness as Laudie-dog was fierce in protecting the hermitage while I was away, and more so, as we are to do this, not under our own power or by our determination or pride, but because the Holy Spirit is fierce within us. Fiery!