Saturday morning I received an unexpected gift. I was assigned to Bethany Guest House for my morning work. (Saturday mornings we all work together on projects around the Community.) The Sister I was working with said, “a lot of what we do at Bethany goes back to Mother Cay,” and I started crying. It was completely unexpected and I still don’t fully understand why. My family arrived the year Mother Cay died, so I didn’t have the opportunity to know her very well. But her commitment to “do everything to the glory of God” has been passed down through the generations. You can feel it in Bethany. As I ironed linens, carefully cleaned shelves, and washed the beautiful pieces of china and crystal from around the world, the feeling of care and love in every detail was palpable.
I thought about the history in that space — the founding years of the Community, Bible studies, personal retreats… The walls have been infused with the joy of wedding dinners, the silent prayer of vow candidates before they make their profession, the reading of scripture, and maybe even the silent prayers of people like me, quietly washing pieces of china that each tell a story. I went home that afternoon and cleaned some things out, inspired to toss out items that had been sitting for years, and create a space to the Glory of God.