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Retreats Reenvisioned III: Evelyn Underhill Day

Today, June 15, is the feast day of Anglican writer and spiritual guide Evelyn Underhill.  A “hinge” event for me each year, in my own spiritual calendar, is the Day of Quiet Reflection in honor of Underhill that is sponsored annually by the  Evelyn Underhill Association.which would have been held this past Saturday, June 13.  We had to postpone to next year because of the pandemic.  A genuine loss to me among so many greater losses. So I took a good part of the day to have my own quiet time, ...

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Pentecost 2020: Calling their names

Pentecost 2020: Calling their names

The church celebrates the Feast of Pentecost today: the day when the first Christians, gathered in fear after Jesus' Ascension, received the gift of the Holy Spirit, coming as tongues of flame, with a sound like a rushing wind.  (Acts 2:1-11). I write this as the major cities of this country have been aflame with rioting (a lot of  if it apparently created by white groups on the left and right seeking to invite violence) as black communities protest the murder of yet another unarmed black man....

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Another Annunciation: Musings on Eastertide, Mourning and the “Mothering Life

Another Annunciation: Musings on Eastertide, Mourning and the “Mothering Life

We have turned the corner toward the last Sunday of the great 50 days Christians celebrate as Eastertide.   And so I need to poast a few thoughts about the season that is passing before we move into the next – grateful, in a way, for how liturgical seasons do provide some shape to these often anomalous weeks of stay-at-home orders. My mother died the Sunday before Lent began:  my last round trip airplane trip began on Ash Wednesday, when I traveled to go and spend a few days with my sisters...

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Retreats Re-envisioned II:  The Practice of Discernment

Retreats Re-envisioned II: The Practice of Discernment

Twenty years ago this season, I published an article in the Eastertide edition of the Sewanee Theological Review called "Discernment and the Work of the Church" drawing on my own experience as a lay person active in the church and constantly seeking God’s will for my life, to explore what “call” and “vocation” mean for all of God’s people.    It was offered in the context of a church that tends to equate “discernment of call” or “vocation” with the call to professional ordained ministry in the...

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Retreats Re-envisioned I:  The Spiritual Art of Attentiveness

Retreats Re-envisioned I: The Spiritual Art of Attentiveness

As a retreat leader I have always been  most energized by working off the presence of those in the room and I do miss that physical closeness. A lot of retreat work I had scheduled for this spring has been cancelled or in a few cases has gone on line, but I thought I’d use this blog space to offer some of the resources I might have drawn on – hoping that readers of this blog may find, in this time of physical distancing, that this provides some sense of renewed spiritual connection This week I...

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And for all this . . . .

And for all this . . . .

We lost my mom just before the pandemic took hold in our communities, so this spring, coinciding with the Lenten season, has been more than usual a season of loss, of grieving, of concern for so many kinds of suffering in our communities and our neighborhoods.  Stripped of our usual routines, self-confined at home,  and without the ability to travel to be with those we love most, we are in a stripped-bare time, just as the bare branches are beginning to leaf out, and the cherry trees are...

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