By Sister Krystal Funk

Today, when I saw a young man standing at the end of the driveway to our novitiate, I knew immediately that he was playing Pokémon Go.

I’ve stood in the same place playing the same game.

I shouted out my car window, “what team are you on?”  He responded, “Team Yellow!”

I said, “I am one of the sisters who lives here, I’ll be up soon!  I am Team Red!”

Having fun; setting limits

I have been viewing videos recently that show large groups of people gathered in one place to play the game. I think this idea is great, but I also find it concerning.

Is this another one of those games that pull us into a different world for hours?

I remember wasting hours playing the life simulation video game, The Sims, in college, only to ask myself later, “What have I done?”

What’s most important?

When I play Pokémon, I try to set limits and look up occasionally from my device when I go for a walk.

When the game alerts me that a Pokémon is nearby, I find myself stopping to catch my Pokémon. But I have limits.

As I prepare to take first vows on Sept. 10, I don’t have the time to play a game for more than half an hour. Why? I have other commitments, and I want to be in community with my sisters.

I’m fine with playing while I go on a walk. But once I close the door to my house, my time is focused on my community and planning to take vows.

I do enjoy the fun in wandering and opening eggs and catching Pokémon but I value

  • the chance to be with those in community more
  • the time to pray with my God more
  • some quiet without distraction.

How long can you sit and reflect on all that has happened in your day?

Sometimes I wonder how a Pokémon Gym ends up at a driveway or in front of a church, or at Auschwitz or the Holocaust Memorial Museum.

Are we paying attention to the things around us or are we sucked into the game?

Is it okay to play Pokémon at Auschwitz?

My moral compass says no. I wonder and I hope that we don’t let these fun games stop us from seeing and talking to one another.

I hope that we still take time for family and the quiet each of us is called to.