I’ve been keeping a secret. Maybe you figured that out in the two months that you’ve heard nothing from me. Maybe, on the other hand, you felt concern—some of you have written asking if I’m ok. (I am, by the way, just fine.) I’m in love. Imagine that! Saturday will be my seventieth birthday, and I’ve fallen in love again. What a surprise. See, my future was all planned and it was to be spent alone at Sunshine Hill—writing, enjoying nature and solitude, participating in my little church community, keeping in touch with all my loved ones far and near. I’d just settled into the stability and calm of this plan when I got caught up in a whirlwind. I met John Sack.
He first came to my attention some years ago when I read his novel, THE FRANCISCAN CONSPIRACY. Visiting his website http://www.franciscanconspiracy.com/ I discovered that he lived really close to me in Jacksonville, OR, and that as writers we had similar goals. We spoke briefly on the phone and planned to meet at a coffee shop where he wrote each morning. But before I had a chance to do that, my husband, John, had a recurrence of cancer. More than four years passed. Last April I read YEARNING FOR THE FATHER, a profound book about the Lord’s Prayer, also written by John Sack. Again I decided to contact him to finally have that cup of coffee and talk shop. We were engaged in a similar kind of writing (novels and spiritual books), had similar goals, background (he was a novice of Thomas Merton’s when he was young) and I just thought he would be a good person to know.
But he no longer lived in Jacksonville. I found him through a new email address at his website and we began to correspond. First I fell in love with his mind. Then, after several months of correspondence we met in person. He called our experience “instant recognition.” We seemed to have known one another forever.
As time goes on and we allow this relationship to develop, you will no doubt find references to him here. In fact, it has become difficult for me to share life at Sunshine Hill without mentioning him. Please rejoice with us as we open our hearts to this amazing gift of new love in the final chapter of our lives.