One sunny day this June I went to a daily mass, as I usually would. After the mass a young man came up to me – it was Matthew from DC. An unexpected meeting of a brother from the Community – what a joy!

Matthew apparently came to Philly for a conference on Science, Faith, and Philosophy organized at UPenn by the Collegium Institute. We were able to have lunch together, and a chat. As it turned out, Matthew is an Astrophysicist – how cool is that? I thought that word only happens in Science Fiction books! It further turned out that we are both doing research with the data, although I do this in the field of medicine, and Matthew – in astrophysics. While I am doing most of my work in “R”, and trying to learn “Python”, Matthew – on the contrary, works usually in “Python” and is learning “R”. We also talked about all things Irish and Polish, and about community life.

And to think – these could have been such ordinary days. Even though I was not able to participate in the conference, as I didn’t know about it before, just meeting Matthew was a refreshing experience for me. It is a wonderful grace of God – to be able to meet a brother in the Community and simply share a piece of our daily lives. Thank you, Lord!

Last week I attended a week-long seminar hosted by the Collegium Institute at the University of Pennsylvania, entitled ‘Seeing Reality: Conversations in Science, Faith and Philosophy’. During the lunch break we were told that daily Mass was available at the Newman Center, so I went along with several others from the seminar. During the Mass, I looked around and saw someone who seemed familiar, though I couldn’t remember why. Later that evening as I was eating dinner, it suddenly clicked that it was Michal Figurski from the Emmanuel Community! We had met just over a year ago at the Emmanuel Community gathering for Pentecost in Allentown, PA.

The following day at Mass, Michal was there again, so I reintroduced myself to him after Mass. We arranged to have lunch together the following afternoon. It was great to get to know Michal better and learn about his work, which had some overlap with mine, in that we are both scientists and spend a lot of time writing code.

I returned home on Friday, and unfortunately I was unable to stay for the Pennsylvania community gathering on Sunday. Nevertheless, meeting Michal was a providential encounter that enhanced my week in Philadelphia. It is wonderful to have such blessed friendships in the Lord!

  1. It is a grace from God to recognize each other as a brother and sister in Jesus. We share the same blood, Jesus’!

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