Reflections

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Lectio Divina Unleashed: Part One

Lectio divina is an ancient prayer practice, meaning sacred reading.  It is a way of being with the sacred texts of our tradition in a contemplative way.  Lectio invites us to enter into silence and stillness to listen deeply for the stirring of the holy in scripture and in us.  Here is a simple overview of the process (modified and condensed from the introduction of our book): The Process of Lectio Divina Preparation Before beginning your time of lectio choose a scripture passage with which to pray.  There are many ways to do this.  I suggest in beginning a regular practice that you

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Upcoming Events

A busy week ahead, I start teaching “Contemporary Christian Spirituality and Prayer” at Seattle U’s School of Theology and Ministry Tuesday morning. I am excited to be working with students from the MDiv and MA programs there.  I love teaching people new ways to pray and helping them prepare for ministry by finding a spirituality and set of practices that are sustaining and nourishing. Our first session of the Awakening the Creative Spirit Program will be on Friday-Saturday October 6-7 (there are still a couple of spots left if you want to join us!)  We have a wonderful group of women already

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Autumnal Equinox

God’s World  O World, I cannot hold thee close enough! Thy winds, thy wide grey skies! Thy mists, that roll and rise! Thy woods, this autumn day, that ache and sag And all but cry with colour!  That gaunt crag To crush!  To lift the lean of that black bluff! World, World, I cannot get thee close enough! Long have I known a glory in it all, But never knew I this; Here such a passion is As stretcheth me apart,—Lord, I do fear Thou’st made the world too beautiful this year; My soul is all but out of me,—let fall No

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The Delight of Dahlias

Nobody sees a flower, really, it is so small. We haven’t time–– and to see takes time, like to have a friend takes time. -Georgia O’Keeffe I walked up to Volunteer Park today after the morning rain had abated, to take time to really see the flowers and capture the beauty of the dahlias in full bloom.  -Christine Valters Paintner

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100 Things (Part Two)

Scroll down past the photos for Part One.  I have lost 51. both of my parents (I am reminded here of that Oscar Wilde line: “to lose one parent may be regarded as a misforture, to lose both looks like carelessness.”) 52. my innocence. 53. my sweet animal companion. 54. friendships I thought would never end. 55. all four of my grandparents. 56. faith in moments of despair. 57. my ability to move my wrists freely. 58. my connection to my body and then over many years slowly re-discovered it again. 59. my Austrian citizenship (I had dual citizenship as

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100 Things (Part One)

Wendy invited me to participate in this meme called “100 Things.”  It has prompted lots of good reflection, although I have only worked my way through half. Knowing that the rest may take another few days, I share here what I have written so far in response.  I invite others who read here and blog to give it a try.  Let me know if you do! I have lived 1. in an apartment in midtown Manhattan, eight blocks from the United Nations, the place of my upbringing. 2. in an apartment in Vienna during summers of my growing up, visiting my

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Sacred Images

I love to celebrate and support the work of women artists who reveal the sacred in their expressions.    This image is called “Blessing” by Martina Shapiro.  Visit her website for many lovely  images celebrating Shabbat and other Jewish themes (thanks to Wendy for featuring her) Miska is an artist who lives in Issaquah and does a whole series of wonderful Madonna icons in contemporary style.  I first discovered her art at St. Placid Priory bookstore and have a couple of reproductions of her work. Julie Barrett Ziegler lives in Olympia and is trained as a calligrapher and icon artist. This is a violin she

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Dwelling in Border Spaces

When despair for the world grows in me and I wake in the night at the least sound in fear of what my life and my children’s lives may be, I go and lie down where the wood drake rests in his beauty on the water, and the great heron feeds. I come into the peace of wild things who do not tax their lives with forethought of grief. I come into the presence of still water. And I feel above me the day-blind stars waiting with their light. For a time I rest in the grace of the world,

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Infusion of Grace

The woman who sat in the chair opposite me looked understandably frightened.  It was her first day there, what would become part of her routine over the next several weeks.  Her husband sat beside her holding her hand, stroking her skin gently, reassuringly, as if to say, I am here with you in this and through this.  The nurse sat fixed before them, taking her time to explain the whole process of receiving treatment for cancer, what she should expect, how she would feel. Of course, any words can never do justice to the experience of allowing chemicals to flow through your veins in the quest

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