Two weeks ago I headed to the Monastery of St. John in Manton, CA for a short visit before the Fall Gathering meetings in Sacramento. The next couple of posts will feature some pictures from my trip. Making a monastery pilgrimage has a long tradition in Orthodoxy. But that is not why I go. Retreating is like looking in the mirror. Face to face with the Lord, with yourself and alone with your thoughts. All of that is fine. The hard part is saying goodbye to the family and heading to the airport. That is lonely business. Check out what greeted me as I made my way through Phoenix Skyharbor.