Lay down the weapon of good intention

A few years ago, my partner and I were invited to speak with a small group of white Catholic North Americans visiting Bolivia. My partner, from Bolivia, was asked to speak briefly with the group about Andean spirituality, and I was asked to translate his words from Spanish to English. (I am sharing this storyContinue reading “Lay down the weapon of good intention”

Franciscan prayer for all of us: a conversation with Jon Sweeney

What does it meant to pray like a Franciscan? This question is one that I reflect on regularly. It’s part of my tendency to informally self-evaluate, to ask myself how I am doing at living my vocation. Typically, the question leads me right to Jesus on the cross. As modeled centuries ago by Saints FrancisContinue reading “Franciscan prayer for all of us: a conversation with Jon Sweeney”

penitents and elements

ash sand air wind flame land repent repent penitents and elements children of God children of earth repent repent skin spit breath bone flesh fire repent repent change convert transform trust humble mortal repent repent these bodies hold histories hopes mysteries every one weak broken all made for union communion penitents and elements children ofContinue reading “penitents and elements”

When the ground moves and tradition changes

During my first visit to a foreign land there was an earthquake, but I was unaware of it until after the fact. I was an exchange student, staying with a host family in Mexico City. Within the first few days that I was there adjusting to everything — change of language, culture, climate, lifestyle andContinue reading “When the ground moves and tradition changes”

Three steps to changes, inspired by Dr. King

Throughout the United States we will honor the legacy of Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. with a holiday next week. Some of us will attend parades or prayer services to feed our souls with the words of good speakers and the sound of great music. Many will participate in the National Day of Service.Continue reading “Three steps to changes, inspired by Dr. King”

This Advent, may we make room

Months ago, while my mind and heart were whirling after moving from rural Wisconsin to Chicago, I attempted to run a simple and quick errand: buy some shampoo. Another sister went with me, and we carried along a short list of things we needed for our new household. At the store, we found little ofContinue reading “This Advent, may we make room”

Openness to the mystery of other people

Gazing toward the brightly lit horizon the other day, I noticed an expansiveness, an opening. Beyond what I could see was a mystery. Bigger than the dances of shadows and light, the frozen November snow and the clouds hanging out their hues of pink and gray, was the power of possibility, the rise of potential.Continue reading “Openness to the mystery of other people”

Lucy’s lament, Greta’s anger and hopeful action

It was a bright June day when I heard a sister lament. The sister: she is named for light; we call her Lucy. At a community meeting, she stood at a podium and spoke into a microphone, her voice full of passion and frustration. She gave a State of the Union speech of sorts, yetContinue reading “Lucy’s lament, Greta’s anger and hopeful action”