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It’s been a busy and blessed New Year so far! I spent the first few days at SLS18 in Chicago, IL. It is a conference put on by the Fellowship of Catholic University Students (FOCUS). The gathering was at the McCormick Convention Center and was attended by around 8,000 students. While Chicago in January isn’t my idea of a good idea, the conference was excellent and I was able to connect with many alumni, friends, and spend time with the Newman Center at Northwest Missouri State where I serve as chaplain.

Above: The flight over snow-covered Chicago.
Below: The main gathering space for most of the keynote speakers at SLS.

Below: Reuniting with some of the men who were freshmen seminarians when I served as chaplain at Conception Seminary College, 2015-2016.

Below: Some delicious pizza I shared with the aforementioned group of guys.

Below: The view from my hotel room- I could see Lake Michigan!

Below: Adoration was powerful. I spent the time hearing confessions.

Back at Conception Abbey, we have been getting a fair amount of snow these past few weeks. The monastery courtyard looking southeast from the 3rd floor window.

Above: The Infirmary addition is near completion!
Below: On sunnier days, the snow melted away and the sun casts some beautiful late afternoon shadows.