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


Category: Lent Easter


A Different Kind of Fast: Part Three – Embrace Trust

Dearest monks and artists, My word for this year is surplus. It is a word which has been working on me for some time now. A couple of summers ago I was pondering how to make the work I love so much sustainable both energetically and financially. Even with work that arises out of passion, we bump up against our limits of what we can give and how much renewal we need. As a contemplative and a strong introvert, my needs for quiet times are high and I am grateful for our seasonal rhythms which allow for extended times of restoration. But

Read More

A Different Kind of Fast: Part Two – Embrace Vulnerability

Dearest monks and artists, In 2003 my mother became seriously ill quite suddenly and died a few days later in the ICU. I was only 33 at the time, she was my second parent to die and I had no siblings. I was left with a profound aloneness, even with my beloved husband’s faithful companionship. I coped at first in the way that had always served me well. By being strong and holding everything together, keeping busy when I could so that I could distract myself from the tremendous grief. Western culture rewards us greatly for being able to pull

Read More

A Different Kind of Fast – Ash Wednesday Blessings & Lenten Resources

Dearest monks and artists, I wanted to share with you some reflections as we begin the holy season of Lent as well as some resources to support your journey. This week we enter the long desert of the Lenten season. If you participate in a liturgical service, most likely you will be marked with the sign of ashes and the words “from dust you came and to dust you shall return” will echo through the sanctuary space again and again. St. Benedict writes in his Rule to “keep death daily before your eyes” and Amma Sarah, one of the desert mothers said, “I

Read More

The Sacred Art of Reading the World – Lectio Divina as a Life Practice ~ A love note from your online abbess

Dearest monks and artists, Lent will be upon us very soon and we are very excited to be offering an online retreat on lectio divina, the sacred art of reading the world which includes seven live sessions with me. While we first take up lectio to listen for the holy speaking through the scriptures, slowly we see the whole world as a sacred text. When I first was introduced to the practice of lectio divina many years ago I felt an opening inside of me, as if I was being met right where I was. I discovered in this ancient way of

Read More

Easter Blessings! ~ A love note from your online abbess

Dearest monks, artists, and pilgrims, We have arrived at the celebration of Easter and resurrection. What Holy Week teaches me is that surrender leads to the fullness of life, yielding our own agendas brings us to new possibilities we couldn’t have dreamed of for ourselves. The story of St. Kevin and the Blackbird is perhaps one of my favorites of all the Celtic saints. He was a 6th century monk and Abbott, and was soul friend to many, including Ciaran of Clomacnoise. After he was ordained, he retreated to a place of solitude, most likely near the Upper Lake at

Read More

Honoring the Equinox + Embrace Mystery ~ A love note from your online abbess

Dearest monks, artists, and pilgrims, The spring equinox has arrived (either last night or this morning depending on where you are in the world). I offer an excerpt from my reflection for Sacred Seasons, which is our yearlong self-study retreat which invites you through the 8 Celtic thresholds of seasonal wisdom. The wilderness and the dry land shall be glad, the desert shall rejoice and blossom; like the crocus it shall blossom abundantly, and rejoice with joy and singing. —Isaiah 35:1-2 I believe deeply that the seasons have a great deal of spiritual wisdom to offer us if we make

Read More

Embrace Attention and Presence for Lent ~ A love note from your online abbess

Dearest monks, artists, and pilgrims, I continue my Lenten series at Patheos this week on A Different Kind of Fast. This week I explore fasting from multitasking and embracing attention to a single thing at a time. It can be so tempting to think, that in our busy lives multitasking will somehow make us more efficient and productive. We bemoan not having more hours in the day, but the hours we do have our attention is scattered, always trying to keep up. We spread our gaze between so many demands that we may get many things done, but none of it is

Read More