Staying at home more often than usual made me think a lot about the things I can write about on my blog and I wanted to try new things, so I thought why not use a list I found on Pinterest and share songs I love? Let me know what you think of these songs and try doing the same if you’re bored!
Disclaimer: This blog post is not detailed, assuming the readers already know about the content of the Bible. To know more about the Bible and the Book of Jonah in particular, please visit the following link: https://www.stmarystmark.ca/books-articles/articles/174-jonah-s-fasting-fast-of-nineveh
Last week, from February 10 to February 12, I fasted three days for Jonah’s fast. Orthodox Christians do this in order to commemorate the three days Prophet Jonah spent inside the fish and Nineveh’s repentance. This year, I actually cared about fasting and reading the book of Jonah, not because I didn’t know the story, but because I never related to it, nor understood in what context I could apply the lessons learned in my life.
After reading the four chapters of the book of Jonah and researching the meaning behind them, the prophet’s story hit me close to home, especially the last chapter. The chapters might seem short, but you have to read them in between the lines to grasp the main message. Here are the things I learned.
To the ones that made me feel like home for five days straight, that made me promise to never change who I am, that loved my sense of humour, that have golden and open hearts, that warmly welcomed us, that cook super well, that encouraged me to serve, that are bold in their faith, that were our second or third mothers to us, that have a height I look up to, that can sing, draw, and be talented like no one else, that are soft in their manners like doves, that are funnier than America’s best comedians, that share a passion for books, that are little innocent geniuses, that have the best semi-broken Arabic, that know how to read Arabic and Coptic (props to youuuuu), that are wannabe Montrealers, and that are amazing travelling companions… this article is for you.
Last week, I embarked on a short spiritual trip. I had no idea, not even the slightest clue on what to expect. No one told me what we were going to do, nor what to expect from a week at a monastery. I didn’t even know who from church was going to the trip. And you know what? Not knowing anything led to the best surprise ever.
I’ve been planning to write so many blog posts since 2019 started, but I haven’t written a single thing! Blame it on the lack or waste of time, blame it on the millions of things I want to do, but can’t seem to (and that, you can blame it on the lack of courage, confidence, or just unexpected events, interrupted plans, etc.), and the list goes on and on… I can’t believe we’re already in May! It’s almost half a year, it’s almost summer, and it’s almost my birthday, and I don’t know how to feel at all. Actually, now that I’m sick, I can’t help but feel a kaleidoscope of emotions I can’t describe, yet one I thing I know is that I am extremely exhausted. My body has been begging me to slow down, but that’s the one thing I hate to do. I basically have to kill my body to rest.
French translation follows
I hadn’t done this in a long time: laying down on the soft grass, looking up to the bright blue ceiling God created during the first days of Genesis.
Instead of taking pictures, I decided to take a break, breathe and pay attention to every detail.
I felt safe and calm and at peace. Not one thought came to mind as soon as I started focusing on nature, God’s perfect, organized beauty.
In September 2017, I had a chance to meet Dr. Hazem Saleh, former Consul and Director of the Egyptian Bureau for Cultural and Educational Affairs in Canada. What I thought would be a short and sweet interview was actually a three-hour meeting, like old friends catching up. In fact, Dr. Saleh is one of the friendliest, most optimistic and knowledgeable consuls I’ve met. I am honoured to have seen him and witness his contagious positive energy. (more…)