Assisi and Hermitage

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September 26th 2019
Published: September 27th 2019
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What a day! Ursula and John were up early and hiked up Mount Subasio to St Francis’ summer campsite, the Hermitage, arriving around 10:00 as it opened. To get to the area where St Francis and his followers camped it was necessary to go through the monastery itself, down a set of stone stairs and through a series of rooms, each smaller than the last with a smaller doorway than the last, until you finally squeeze out onto the walkway overlooking the ravine and a small stone bridge across to niche where they set up a covering to protect themselves from bad weather.

The area is extremely peaceful and as you walk further along the path you find small sitting areas and serene pathways for silent contemplation of nature. At the end of the main path is a rough-cut series of seats and an altar. Although not what St Francis may have had, it certainly represents the energy and loving focus of the saint. Walking back we took some pictures and enjoyed a lively conversation. Ursula is a very special person with a level of integrity not found in most people and a loving energy that is rare.

After a quiet, early lunch of pasta and salad at the flat, Ursula went off to try a different route to the Hermitage, Chad continued reading and relaxing, and Peggy and John went in search of gifts for family members. We all rested in the late afternoon in preparation for a dinner at the Rotary Club of Assisi which started at 8:00 PM.

The Rotary dinner was in honor of a sister club agreement between John’s Rotary club in San Francisco and the one in Assisi. This event included comments and gifts from Assisi Mayor Stefania Proietti, Club President Fabio Berellini, and of course John as representative of the Rotary Club of San Francisco. The food was plentiful, the wine flowed and the conversation was enlightening. Chad, Ursula, Rosella and Peggy were all in attendance. In the end the two clubs agreed to work together on a Rotary Climate Action Team to promote responsibility among Rotary clubs we all come in contact with so that we can move the climate agenda forward more quickly. A marvelous evening which ended at around 11:00. Off home and to bed.

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