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”

Love in the midst of the mess

You are dreading another meal of ramen noodles and canned vegetables, but you know that’s all that’s left in the cupboard, that it’s the best you can offer your son tonight. You’re thinking about this as you enter the dimly lit child care center to pick him up, with hunger pulling on your stomach, onlyContinue reading “Love in the midst of the mess”

Dead man on the sidewalk

He is lying in the middle of the street, wrapped in a blanket, semiconscious. Earlier, someone was concerned enough to call the paramedics. The paramedics picked him up by the arms, dragged him to the sidewalk, determined he did not need medical transport, and left. When the paramedics find him, nobody is with him. NoContinue reading “Dead man on the sidewalk”

On practicing Christian hospitality

My husband and I recently made the difficult decision to open our guestroom to a family experiencing homelessness in our community. We heard about a mother, father and their infant who were living on the streets and in dire need of help. A member of my husband’s congregation posted on Facebook that the family, whom sheContinue reading “On practicing Christian hospitality”

The frailty of my faith (or, How losing my daughter in the park gave me a glimpse of my own hypocrisy)

I only took my eyes off of her for a few seconds … It’s so cliché, but so damn true. This summer was an unusually sweltering one in the Pacific Northwest, and our local splash park offered a welcome reprieve from the relentless heat. Facing yet another 90+ degree day in mid-August, I brought myContinue reading “The frailty of my faith (or, How losing my daughter in the park gave me a glimpse of my own hypocrisy)”

Over-Blessed

By guest blogger Elizabeth Diedrich It is 7 p.m. and there are two things on my mind: I am hungry and I need to use the bathroom. Dinner service ended a half hour ago but one person has yet to leave. I wait at the back door, ready to finish my job, which involves makingContinue reading “Over-Blessed”

3 simple ways to honor St. Francis today

Happy St. Francis Day!!! I love this guy. Today, I invite you to do three simple and important things to honor St. Francis and his legacy that continues to inspire people, like me, to follow Jesus in messy, authentic ways.  The three actions I propose are totally Franciscan things to do. Join my Franciscan family and me inContinue reading “3 simple ways to honor St. Francis today”

On the corner of 12th Ave. and Jefferson

True story shared by guest blogger Liz  Diedrich I was happy to see William pull up next to me on his bike. Last I heard he had been stabbed in a fight and I did not know the extent of his injuries. Surprised at the opportunity, I ask him how he was doing. He seemsContinue reading “On the corner of 12th Ave. and Jefferson”

Advent Stumblings

Guest blogger: Ben Anderson I didn’t get it right. The new mass words have begun this Advent and I have often found myself stumbling and failing at it. I hate that, failing. The irrational part of me flairs up in a puff of anger at myself and others. I want to be “right,” and suchContinue reading “Advent Stumblings”