Fellowship of Saints and Sinners

Fellowship of Saints and Sinners


Visio Divina (The Visual Word): An Advent Series

Fellow saint and sinner Katie Archibald-Woodward is just another restless soul longing to encounter God in the world around her.

Starting tomorrow we’re in for a treat.  That’s when we’ll begin a special Advent series featuring the photography of the very talented, fellow saint and sinner Katie Archibald-Woodward.  (Just think: we’ll get to say that we knew Katie before she became famous; and I’ll be able to boast that I grew up miles from her childhood home in southern California!)

In case you’re wondering what “Advent” is, here is a standard dictionary definition:

“advent” (noun)-

1. a coming into place, view, or being; arrival

2. the coming of Christ into the world

3. the period beginning four Sundays before Christmas, observed in commemoration of the coming of Christ into the world.

If Advent is a time on the church calendar when we Christians prepare for the breaking in of God’s kingdom, it also gives expression to something even more fundamental- it names the very essence of what it means to see the world through eyes of faith. “Advent” is the “coming into place, view or being” of a loving God who speaks to us-  through creation, in Scripture, and in the stirrings of our own hearts.

The compilation of photos that Katie will share with us over the next month captures Katie’s own fleeting glimpses of this God and this God’s Word to her as she meets this God in her various comings and goings.  Her inspiration for this series is Psalm 19:1-4:

The heavens are telling the glory of God; and the firmament proclaims God’s handiwork.

Day to day pours forth speech, and night to night declares knowledge.

There is no speech, nor are there words; their voice is not heard;

yet their voice goes out through all the earth, and their words to the end of the world. In the heavens God has set a tent for the sun.

Katie holds a B.A. from Willamette University and an M.Div. from Columbia Theological Seminary.  Here is a little more about her from her official bio:

“She began her travel adventures at a very young age and at two made her first overseas journey.  Too excited to sit still – or maybe just being a restless toddler – she, “walked across the Atlantic,” as her Dad likes to describe.  Her love of traveling and fascination for different cultures grew as she continued her explorations throughout the globe for both leisure and study.

Realizing her joy of photographing these spectacular sights was proving itself to be a talent and an emerging passion, she began to take photography more seriously.  She hopes her photography will help others experience the visible divine Word of God (visio divina) captured in the beauty and diversity of creation.  Katie also hopes others, like she, will be filled with a sense of wonder and delight for God’s marvelous work and in turn become more connected to God, each other and creation.”

We hope you’ll come back tomorrow for the first in this series! Every Tuesday and Thursday between now and Christmas, this intersection between God and life will feature one of Katie’s photos and a verse from Scripture- all as a way to prepare us for the birth of the Christ child, not just in this season on the church calendar, but all year round.



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posted 11:58:48am Jul. 29, 2014 | read full post »

The Rise of the "Spiritual But Not Religious"
Here at this intersection between God and life, I'm always interested in news pertaining to those who call themselves "spiritual but not religious"—hence this article from The New York Times featuring the work of three other authors who, like me, are responding to the epithet that now describes on

posted 5:53:50pm Jul. 27, 2014 | read full post »

Are You Opposed to People Owning Guns? Via John Piper
[caption id="attachment_5235" align="alignleft" width="339"] Jim Eliot and 4 other missionaries were killed in Ecuador by Auca Indians. The missionaries had guns but chose to fire them in the air rather than at their attackers who had spears. The Aucas have since embraced Christ in great number.[/ca

posted 11:40:36am Jul. 22, 2014 | read full post »

Mental Health Break— "Sea Song" and Lisa Hannigan
This week the theme of the sea put to music especially touched me as our family grieves the loss of my granddad.  My granddad was a lifelong sailor and lover of the sea, and we will scatter some of his ashes on the sea where he used to command our family's annual regatta from Shelter Island, New Yo

posted 11:16:49am Jul. 18, 2014 | read full post »

"Admiral John": A Granddaughter's Remembrances
It feels a bit like Groundhog Day: wasn't it just a couple months ago that I was sharing a granddaughter's reflections upon the death of a grandparent?  This past Saturday, my granddad John slipped away suddenly to join his late wife Peggy of 68 years who had been his companion until two months ago

posted 11:58:22am Jul. 15, 2014 | read full post »




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