As Autumn settles in at St. Simeon Skete,
we’ve now completed a full year in Taylorsville, Kentucky.
Much has been accomplished in establishing this space of prayer, yet; there is still much yet to do.
Upon purchasing the property, there was (and still is) many physical projects necessary to aesthetically conform the grounds to the atmosphere necessary for a skete. That is ... an atmosphere of prayer.
We are working on these projects one at a time as funding, labor and weather permits.
It cannot be said too often, or stressed enough that St. Simeon Skete is about prayer, everything we do stems, circulates and grows from that prayer.
It is the heart of Nazareth House Apostolate which enables the blood to circulate through the body.
Without the work at the Skete, the mission work in Sierra Leone could not continue.
That work, the ongoing prayer, has been going on way before we relocated to Taylorsville, there has been no change in that, only the location is different. It is at this new setting that we hope to expand that prayer with vocations. Those who will give up all of the world to come and live this life of prayer at the Skete.
There was a time when people believed that prayer at this level was necessary and vocations were plentiful. As the world became more materialistic, vocations began to drop.
At Nazareth House Apostolate we believe that it is the lack of places such as St. Simeon Skete, that the world is in such decline.
People need to know that there is somewhere in the world where people are praying.
When they are stuck in traffic, already late for work and suddenly their car overheats
- people need to know that in the midst of their struggle there are those who are praying for them at the skete.
On Sunday, November 6th, we officially opened the Wailing Wall of St. Simeon Skete.
The Wall, containing a shrine with pieces of mortar from the original Wailing Wall in Jerusalem, lies hidden beyond the fencing
overlooking Taylorsville Lake.
Yesterday, it was blessed and the first prayers were inserted into the cracks.
The Notice on the Wailing Wall at St. Simeon Skete reads:
“This wall is inspired by another wall, the Wailing Wall in Jerusalem.
Here generations have cried and prayed out their needs before God.
Indeed to this day little pieces of paper with prayers and petitions are rolled up and inserted in the broken mortar between the bricks of the wall.
This wall serves the same purpose.
It is here in order that needs, prayers and petitions may be stuck in the crevices that as they’re seen they will be prayed for.
Also, you may take a petition from the wall, keep it for a week and pray for the unknown writer whose heart may be broken.
Then you might initial and date it and put it back again so that the person who put it there originally may know that he or she is not alone; that someone gave comfort, sympathy and concern.
In any case, the Wailing Wall stands here as a shrine, a special place at St. Simeon Skete
where we stand with deep devotion with you as we raise our hearts and minds to God with longing, tears and confidence.
Feel free to stick your needs in the cracks and look over other’s needs.
Most of all, stand, kneel or prostrate here with reverence, faith and quiet that deep sympathy and mercy always demands of us.
Jesus Mercy dear friend.
Now it is time to go into the marketplace, do so with this commission: “...go ye and learn...I will have mercy, and not sacrifice.” -St. Matthew 9:13”