Visit the Abbey of the Arts online retreat platform to access your programs:


Category: Advent Christmas Epiphany



This photo is of my grandmother on my mother’s side.  The baby is my uncle and the little girl is my mother. My uncle is the only one left alive from this image. I can see a theme developing in my art already — I used a wooden board as a base, adhered white tissue paper with gel medium (I really like the texture), then cut the image up in pieces — I wanted to experiment with dividing a photo into separate parts.  This technique fits my grandmother well, as she was never a happy person.  In this photo I

Read More


Loving Advent Christmas is coming but Advent is here. A time of waiting – Not for gifts to open but for our very selves. Our hearts open slowly. We must wait and wonder. Something new will come out of the darkness. Let yourself sink into the unknowing. Bring a pillow, get comfortable. Waiting in Advent is like planting bulbs for the spring. -Pamela McCauley Pam was one of the participants at our Awakening the Creative Spirit program last month and a longtime reader of this blog and poetry contributor.  I love her poem about the waiting of Advent — “Not for gifts

Read More

Art for Advent

“This season beckons me to ask, what am I preparing for? What is the way that is being prepared within the wilderness of my life? What does it mean for my own life to become a path, a way of welcome for the Holy One? How do I give myself time to notice the ways that the path unfolds before me and within me? What are the acts of preparation that bring delight to my daily life? Whom do I ask or allow to help me prepare?” -Jan Richardon, Night Visions: Searching the Shadows of Advent and Christmas As most

Read More


Friday and Saturday is our next Awakening the Creative Spirit session and so I will be very busy the next couple of days and then recovering!  We are exploring visual art this time and I am the lead teacher (Betsey and I switch back and forth depending on the art form we are exploring).  I am eager to be with the wonderful women in our group again. Sunday is the Feast of Epiphany in the Christian Church.  I love the story of Epiphany:  Strangers following a star in the hopes of a sacred encounter, trusting their intuitions, allowing God to be so

Read More

Room for Christ

It is no use saying that we are born two thousand years too late to give room to Christ.  Nor will those who live at the end of the world have been born too late.  Christ is always with us, always asking for room in our hearts. But now it is with the voice of our contemporaries that he speaks, with the eyes of store clerks, factory workers, and children that he gazes; with the hands of office workers, slum dwellers, and suburban housewives that we gives.  It is with the feet of soldiers and tramps that he walks, and with the heart of

Read More

Winter Solstice

I discovered this wonderful reflection by Ron Rolheiser at Antony’s blog: Coming to the Quiet. During my last years of seminary training, I attended a series of lectures given by a prominent Polish psychologist, Casmir Dabrowski, teaching at the time at the University of Alberta. He had written a number of books around a concept he called “positive disintegration.” Positive disintegration. Isn’t that an oxymoron? Isn’t disintegration the opposite of growth and happiness? It would seem not. A canon of wisdom drawn from the scriptures of all the major world religions, mystical literature, philosophy, psychology, and human experience tells us that the journey to

Read More


**I added some information below on the tools I used for the stamp carving I have been really captivated by rubber stamp carving these days.  Bette got me started and now I keep thinking of things I want to carve.  I love making a design and then carving away the excess until only the form remains.  It becomes very meditative as I am fully mindful and present to what is before me.  I also love the look of the metallic ink on black paper:    I love trees, so of course had to carve one!   This cross is from

Read More