Evening Meditation (by Dawn Carrillo)

November is a special month for many reasons…the end of the harvest and the celebration of its bounty, the definitive change in light, the movement of fall toward winter, and in the church, the remembrance of the saints and all those who have passed through the veil before us. For me, it is a time of sifting through memories, making space for the deep reflection that ensues. Ultimately, November leads me to looking at my own life with profound gratitude as I ponder the lives of the living saints who influence me on a daily basis, and the gift of all who are no longer present to me in material form.

The Covid-19 pandemic has brought about a time when many of us are searching for answers, reflecting on events, and wondering at God’s presence in our lives and in the turbulent world around us. Most of us can attest to knowing God’s presence in the people whom we love, but there is so much more to be aware of. In fact, there is nowhere in Creation—and in our lives—that God is not present.

A few years ago, I created this reflection for people to use in the evening before retiring for the night. It is a way to look back over the day and to notice the moments where God has been powerfully present and, perhaps, moving within us in a new way. The reflection is modeled on an ancient practice in the church that can help us see God’s hand at work in our whole experience. St. Ignatius Loyola is known for his use of this prayer, called the Examen, in his Spiritual Exercises. One of the few rules of prayer that Ignatius made for his followers, the Jesuits, was the requirement that Jesuits practice the Examen twice daily—at noon and at the end of the day. It is a habit that Jesuits, and many other Christians, practice each day.

Before you begin, find a quiet spot where you can be alone and uninterrupted for a little over 10 minutes, then take a few moments to center and focus yourself before starting the video. May you be blessed with what you see and hear, and may you know anew that God is as close to you as the very breath you breathe…

Dawn Carrillo, DMin is the current director for the Center for Spirituality and  Enrichment at St. Scholastica Monastery. Her passion lies in the area of creating opportunities for others to awaken to the wonder and beauty of life in God and all of Creation.


  1. Lee on October 31, 2020 at 2:47 pm

    This is so lovely-a perfect spirit-filled way to end the day. Thank you!

  2. Deb Ruzynski on November 1, 2020 at 8:38 am

    That was a beautiful Evening Meditation. Thank you so very much. This is something I would love to do more and more, for it brings such a peace with it while ending the day.