From The New York Times comes this tale of a monk traveling abroad, a confused and clueless United, and the monk’s brothers back home, struggling to remain in the charity of Christ in the face of the one of the evils that plague modern mankind — dealing with an airline’s customer-service department.
Pray for all travelers, everyone buying tickets, and for all airline personnel, whose company policies and procedures often put them at the mercy of people with far less self-control than the gentle residents of the Benedictine Monastery of Christ in the Desert …
“This was the most frustrating call of the day,” Brother Noah said. “Everything became our fault. There was no evidence that Brother John Baptist had been placed on a new return flight. No record of the conversation with Mark. I really struggled to remain calm and charitable. My monastic life is about staying peaceful in all circumstances. I failed during this call.”
The Haggler was intrigued. What exactly does a livid monk sound like, anyway?
“I said to her something like: ‘Thank you for speaking. God bless you. I will pray for you. But you have not been helpful.’ ”
Whoa, Brother Noah! Dial back the rage there, fella. You’re going to pop a vein.
When the Haggler noted that this outburst didn’t really sound like an outburst, Brother Noah laughed and then elaborated.
“It was my tone of voice,” he said. “I know that it manifested anger.”
Read the rest here …
As a bonus, here’s John Denver’s “Leaving on a Jet Plane,” performed by A Cappella Veterans on New Year’s Eve 2013, at the farewell gathering for the parish priest at St. Mary Immaculate Church in Sorowako, Indonesia …