A 40 Year "Retrospective Journey"

“Be good, keep your feet dry,
your eyes open, your heart at peace
and your soul in the joy of Christ.”
Thomas Merton

December 8, 2008

The Last Posts

December 8, 1968
Journal Entry

Thomas Merton posts the last entry to his journal on December 8, 1968 from the Oriental Hotel in Bangkok. For the most part it is a matter-of-fact post, summarizing some the days meetings, events, and preparation for the conference. Ordinary stuff in the duties and labours of a pilgrim!

He says a little more about his "excess baggage" on the fight from Singapore... "They made me weigh my hand luggage, which put me overweight for the economy class allowance, so instead of just paying more for nothing I paid the difference for a first-class ticket, thus covering it with a bigger baggage allowance. And had a very comfortable ride, overeating, drinking two free, and strong, Bloody Marys, and talking to a diplomatic courier for the State Department..." AJTM p.253

Thomas Merton's last journal words... "Today is the Feast of the Immaculate Conception. In a little while I leave the hotel. I'm going to say Mass at St. Louis Church, have lunch at the Apostolic Delegation, and then on to the Red Cross place this afternoon." AJTM p.254

December 8, 1968
Letter Home

Patrick Hart and Thomas Merton

Brother Patrick Hart notes in the Postscript that Thomas Merton also wrote to him on December 8th. In the conclusion of what was to be his last letter Merton writes... "I think of you all on this feast day and with Christmas approaching I feel homesick for Gethsemani. But I hope to be at least in a monastery - Rawa Seneg (in Indonesia). I also look forward to being at our monastery at Hong Kong, and may be seeing our three volunteers there (or is it two?). No more for the moment. Best love to all. Louie." AJTM p.257

Peace and blessings... Rob

“It is in the ordinary duties and labors of life that the Christian can and should develop his spiritual union with God.”
Thomas Merton

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