After almost a month of inactivity in this blog, perhaps some of you may be thinking that I dissapeared from the planet. I answered (most of my) emails and replied to all PDF-file, book, and course requests, but I did not publish any new posts. So, in a way you could say I did dissapear. Once my final exams for the summer session were done, I invested my time in praying to St. Joseph and moving forward with my long-term plans.
As many of you know, my plans for this coming academic year were to move from Miami, FL to Pamplona (Navarra), Spain with my family to attend a graduate theology program at the University of Navarra. But, it turns out St. Joseph had something else in mind. I had great difficulties finding both a visa and means to supporiting my family while we lived there (it would have been illegal for me to work in Spain if I had a student visa). This meant that Spain was not an option for us.
In turn, I was offered a full-time position as Academic Dean at a small, independent, conservative Catholic school near Salem, Oregon--close to my wife's hometown and family, the place she has always dreamt of settling in. I decided to accept the position and move there. The trip was grueling (it took 7 days of driving--not counting Sunday, when we rested) and extremely expensive (most of my savings went into the gas tank). I can't deny, however, that it was quite exciting: we saw many incredibly-beautiful landscapes (the Rockies, WOW!) and visited many interesting places (including four more MLB stadiums!!!).
So here we are now, in Northwestern Oregon's gorgeous Willamette Valley. This is not Spain, but, ironically, it is, as it were, a virgin version of Aragón (Northeastern Spain, where the Romeros are originally from), with its rolling hills, winding rivers, luscious vineyards, ubiquitous evergreens, and fields after fields of green, with the snow-capped Pacific Crest Mountains in the distance. I didn't even know so many tones of green exist! My wife is terribly excited to be back here; she is finally home. She is very much acting herself--something she couldn't do in Miami. We will now be here for a good, long time, Deo volente.
So my plans to pursue theological studies have changed a bit. I will still do it but, for now, in a different way. I am still enrolled in a Distance Education program through which I will eventually earn an M.A. in theology. Perhaps when I finish that--and I'm doing it in a very much part-time fashion, as time allows--perhaps then I will reconsider plans to pursue an STD (a canonical Doctorate in Sacred Theology), but it will all depend on Divine Providence, through the intercession of the good St. Joseph. Close by I have Mount Angel Seminary, which offers an STB... who knows?!