Democracy is collapsing, but let’s imagine how the church could change that

I was in another Zoom meeting with my friend, another Catholic sister who is a professor on a college campus. Together we were lamenting the extreme polarities in the church and society. Rubbing our foreheads. Sighing. Praying right out loud: God, help us. Together we were bemoaning how the tensions impact our freedom to loveContinue reading “Democracy is collapsing, but let’s imagine how the church could change that”

Freedom songs

Selma has been on my mind lately. With the passing of John Lewis, my social media feed has been flooded with photos of him standing at the foot of the Edmund Pettus Bridge, stories of his constant bravery and even videos of him dancing or crowd surfing. We have lost a legend. And my mindContinue reading “Freedom songs”

Lessons learned in liminal spaces

this is the space of chrysalis– of break-downs & becoming something something better something more true (we hope, we imagine) this is the crazy time (some say) this is what they warned us about: “remember, you are more prone to accidents and illness. remember to breathe.” no maps are available no one has been hereContinue reading “Lessons learned in liminal spaces”

Hope and heartache on this side of the grave

I understand that my death could come any day. My own life experiences have etched this understanding into the channels of my heart. I carry a consciousness of my mortality into all my ordinary actions. Knowing that the potential of death looms nearby influences what I think about, dream about and do with my days.Continue reading “Hope and heartache on this side of the grave”

When perpetual adoration takes on a new meaning

For more than 141 years, since Aug. 1, 1878, the Franciscan Sisters of Perpetual Adoration have maintained the practice that gives us our name. Along with our lay prayer partners, one of us, at all times, has been praying before the consecrated host in our adoration chapel in La Crosse, Wis. Our congregation has enduredContinue reading “When perpetual adoration takes on a new meaning”

Letting the pandemic change us for the better

When I was 24 years old, I fell off a cliff and shattered my face. Surviving a life-threatening accident at a young age transformed me. Afterwards, I had no more illusions about my mortality or the sacredness of time. I discovered a new urgency to live well. My long-term goals came front and center. FromContinue reading “Letting the pandemic change us for the better”

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”

The Goodness of Gray, the Holy Innocents, and the Kairos (Time) of God

It’s a gray day, one of those types where the clouds hang heavy and seem to block out all sunlight. Inside a cozy lamp-lit room, I am sitting in a circle of ministers training to be spiritual directors and practicing the art of listening. Around the circle, person after person tells a story from theirContinue reading “The Goodness of Gray, the Holy Innocents, and the Kairos (Time) of God”