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Category: Abbess love notes


Join Our Sustainers Circle ~ A Love Note from Your Online Abbess

Dearest monks, artists, and pilgrims, One of my heart’s great joys is the global nature of this community. To know that there are monks and artists spread all over the world who commit to this way of life brings me tremendous comfort and encouragement.  I feel grateful daily for this vibrant and meaningful work and the amazing people I get to collaborate with to help create our programs and offerings. I am thankful every day for you and for the many notes of encouragement I receive about what our work means to you.  In October we will be adding a

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The Cloud of Unknowing and the Greening Power of Contemplation ~ A Love Note from Your Online Abbess

Dearest monks, artists, and pilgrims, Last spring I received an email from my editor at Broadleaf Books to connect me with Carmen Acevedo Butcher who had a new translation of Brother Lawrence’s writings out. That connection was such a gift as I have been a fan of Carmen’s work for years, having especially loved her work with the women mystics.  We went on to record a conversation about The Practice of the Presence for our book club and found Carmen to be not only a wise teacher of contemplative practice, but a beautiful human being full of kindness and enthusiasm. A friendship

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Love Holds You Poetry and WritingMini-Retreat ~ A Love Note from Your Online Abbess

Whatever I Find hidden among the stones piled by lake’s edge — a beetle, a coin, a candy wrapper — let it be a portent, a cypher. Let me seek a new direction among what is hidden, lost, discarded, rather than always grasping at some bright, invisible future. —Christine Valters Paintner, Love Holds You: Poems and Devotions for Times of Uncertainty Dearest monks, artists, and pilgrims, This coming Friday, I am delighted to be leading an online program, hosted by Mercy by the Sea retreat center, called Love Holds You: Yielding to the Sacred Presence through Poetry and Writing. This mini-retreat

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Christine’s Article on Exile Published by US Catholic

At the heart of exile is a longing to come home again. What does this mean for us in this world? Home may be a place, a house we love, in a landscape we love, with a community who cares for us. It may be a more ethereal kind of reality, like a feeling we have when we experience complete acceptance by others. Or the feeling we have when we walk along the seashore or in a woodland and feel ourselves aligned with God’s creation and its pulsing aliveness. Being at home indicates a state of ease, of feeling welcome,

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Transfiguration and Program Updates

A Blessing for Transfiguration Radiant God, open our eyes to all the ways the sacred shimmers before us, how gold pours forth from the robin’s throat, how sunlight returns each morning, how the moon glitters across still water, how laughter around the table kindles joy, how kindness can change lives. Free us from our need to seize these moments, to make of them stone monuments rather than tabernacles of light we carry with us in our hearts. This vision is not a call to stay on the mountain but to gather our treasures into an open embrace, to make the

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Abbey of the Arts Welcomes New Wisdom Council Members!

Abbey of the Arts is extraordinarily delighted to welcome four new members to our Wisdom Council! Carmen Acevedo Butcher, PhD is an amazing scholar and translator of mystical texts (including most recently Practice of the Presence from Brother Lawrence and she will be leading a program for us on The Cloud of Unknowing in August). We were introduced by our mutual editor and discovered we were both fangirls of one another’s work. She has a beautiful warmth and is rooted deeply in the wellspring of Love. We also invited three young adult members recently to expand perspectives on our council

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Lughnasa Blessing

I know some of you are enduring terrible heat right now, but here in Ireland the turning toward Lughnasa brings a shift in light and air that hints at autumn’s coming which I love. July is the hardest month for me because of both too much light and heat – although this year it was the rainiest month and cooler than usual thankfully – so I celebrate this feast as it brings my favorite seasons ahead when I feel more creativity and aliveness.  Wherever you are in the northern hemisphere, you might honor this threshold of turning toward harvest. And

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