Throwback Thursday March 30, 2023 - Making Syrup
It is Maple Syrup season here in North Central Wisconsin. In spring, when the days are warmer but the nights are still below freezing, the sap in the maple trees starts running, preparing to feed all the leaves that will soon bud from the branches. In this photo from 1924, the friars are stoking the fire that will boil the sap until it is cooked down into the maple syrup used at the refectory tables. It takes a lot of sap, about 5 gallons, to make a pint of syrup. I can only imagine how much sap the friars had to collect to provide syrup for the clerics and staff for the year!
Monday Moment, March 27, 2023 - Creativity
Thank you to Ruth Hoenick for leading our retreat this past weekend, "Silent Retreat with Spiritual Creativity". Also thanks to Ruth for sharing all these examples of the many ways to express our spirituality through our creative talents. Our guests used painting, collage, writing, crafting and many other ways to "speak" what was on their hearts this weekend.
Throwback Thursday, March 23, 2023 - Ice Floes
From the 1953 House Chronicle: "A full week before last year’s opening, the river shrugged its massive shoulders and tossed off the imprisoning jacket of ice on March 22, early in the morning. There is something terrifying and awesome in the silent rush of the big ice floes down the river, but it was a welcome herald - though no more than a herald - of spring." The photo is dated April 10, 1924, so that year spring came a bit later than in 1953. For 2023, the river has not yet shrugged its massive shoulders, but neither would we recommend scheduling an ice skating party on the river. There are places where the ice is so thin the squirrels will not risk crossing those areas, so this year the river may not yield any big ice floes.
Trivia Tuesday, March 14, 2023 - Changing Times
For all the discussion around the pros and cons of Daylight Savings Time, here at St. Anthony's we know that the twice annual time change is no time saver. In fact, it takes someone a fair amount of time to locate and change the time on no less than 22 clocks around the building, not including any clocks in staff members' office. From the far SE corner in the basement's St. Francis Chapel to the NW corner in the main floor Hesse Lounge to the SW Corner of the 2nd floor hall, that means a lot of walking!
Throwback Thursday, March 9, 2023 - Kitchen Kapers
This photo of a friar cooking hangs on the wall in the kitchen, just to the left of the friar in the photo. Back in the day, this kitchen served three meals a day to as few as a couple dozen friars to over 100 friars. Although much of the kitchen has been updated since this photo was taken, the original brick archway over the stove remains. The counter in front of the friar is now a wood butcher block top made with a repurposed bowling alley.
Friday, March 3, 2023 - This Just In!
Flat Friar is pleased to model the new fleece jackets that just arrived today. The front zip-up jackets are available in the Bookstore in either brown or maroon, sizes up to 3x. Be sure to check them out soon! While you are there, browse through our new Lent and Easter books. Call our office 9-4 during the week for an appointment or shop when you are here for weekend retreats.
Throwback Thursday, February 23, 2023
The caption on this 1925 image says "Winter in Monastery Park". It looks like it was taken on the banks of the Rib River, The interesting thing about so many of these old photos is they refer to St. Anthony's as a monastery, which was technically incorrect but probably more commonly understood that the more accurate term "friary". While the friars here followed many monastic practices, they were apostolic in their mission, meaning they left the walls to serve the community.
Throwback Thursday, February 16, 2023
Maybe it was a radio like this, maybe not, either way the Capuchins were eager to have a radio to hear the opening program of the Vatican City Station, HVJ, on February 12, 1931! Permission was granted by Fr. Provincial and everyone gathered around to listen to the Pope that day. Just imagine, that was the first time the Pope's voice was heard around the world!
Throwback Thursday, February 9, 2023
This photo of winter at St. Anthony's may surprise you. The photo was taken from the NE side of the pond (in the foreground) probably in the mid-1920's. The surprise would be the lack of trees, and the size of the few trees that were there. Guests who enjoy our woods may not realize that when the Center was built, the land was clear because it was farmland. It remained a farm for at least the first dozen years with the animals and crops used to feed the friars. You may even be able to see the barn and silo on the right side of the picture. We are thankful the friars had the foresight to plant trees when the farm was no longer needed so we are able to enjoy the beautiful woods we have today.
Throwback Thursday, February 2, 2023
Ninety-eight years ago today, the friars celebrated the Feast of the Presentation by having a skating party out back on the Rib River. Ice skating, despite the shoveling required to prepare the rink, was one of the more popular winter activities for the friars throughout the seminary days. A House Chronicle entry from February 1953 also listed skiing, hiking and basketball (?!?) as favorite outdoor winter activities. Our recent cold snap has likely provided a firm surface on the river should someone wish to go skating, but JustBob won't be plowing the Rib River or the basketball court for them!