In the Heart of Texas

In January we spent a few days in Texas visiting JoLene’s sister and husband, Joyce and Glenn Ginder, who live part of the year in Smithville, which is east of Austin. We saw a variety of sights.

We visited the Ladybird Johnson Wildflower Wildflower Center. This being winter, everything outdoors was a bit drab, but we tried to imagine how colorful it would be in spring and summer.

In the next photo, in the spring this field will be covered with Bluebonnet and Indian Paintbrush wildflowers. What a sight that would be!

Here is how Bluebonnets look in January.

And surprisingly, the place has a touch of Africa.

Another day we drove to several country locations to see the “Painted Churches” of Fayette County. All of them are Catholic, I believe. The exteriors of the churches are ordinary, looking like many American country churches built around 1900.

But the interiors are spectacular, full of color, brightness and beauty.

You can learn more about these churches by searching online for: painted churches of Texas.

We also visited St. Benedict’s Farm, a small lay Catholic Christian community of celibate men and women – a lay monastery in the tradition of St. Benedict. “Small” means two residents. Brother John welcomed us, told us the story of the community, described their ecumenical involvements, and showed us the chapel.

Here is Brother John, a pleasant, warm-hearted brother in Christ.

Glenn and Joyce live in Smithville in The Village, a residential area for members of RVICS, a non-profit organization, the full name of which is Roving Volunteers in Christ’s Service. Members of this organization donate their time to work for 3 or 4 weeks at a time at a church or Christian camp at many locations in USA and Canada. They travel and live in their recreational vehicles.

Although it was winter, we saw these beautiful flowers in full bloom in The Village.

2 Responses

  1. Thanks for sharing the pictures. This makes me want to take a road trip.

    I did not know that JoLene and Joyce are sisters. Both offer lives of service while exploring. Perhaps RVICS will come to Roxbury some day!

  2. Glad to see you blogging again.

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