As our schools begin their summer  break this week , some of us might be travelling or taking some time off. Whether we actually leave or stay, the weeks ahead provide us with some time to rest and reconnect with family and friends.

This time of holidays offers us more time to renew our relationships with ourselves, with others and also with God. This time, if at all possible, is the time to read and relax and perhaps pray a bit more. Interrupting the hectic pace of daily life might prove beneficial in all those fronts. Those who travel might be looking for a beautiful spot by the seaside or in the countryside. Take time to contemplate and reflect on the beauty  of creation and our responsibility to respect, protect and care for it, in the name of God, humanity and future generations.

Some other people might choose something more  cultural.  In this way we can discover the monuments of the past — witnesses of culture and faith, examples of our spiritual roots and heritage. Cathedral and abbeys, in particular, are places where beauty helps us feel the presence of God and inspires us to pray for the rest of humanity.

Having more time we might find the opportunity to read a good book. If you are travelling you could also pack the bible or the gospels in your suitcase or download it to your tablet! Profit of the opportunity and spend some time reading God’s Word. Also if you are not around, look for a place where to attend Sunday mass.

The enjoyment of friendship, reading, nature and culture helps to nourish and restore our spirit. It gives us the strength to continue our journey refreshed and renewed.

As for me, I’ll be away at a conference in Cambridge this week. Then I’ll have two weeks of missionary experience in the UK. At the end of  August I’ll go to southern Italy for a few days and then back to Italy in October.

I wish you a happy holiday season.

Fr. Javier