Fellowship of Saints and Sinners

Fellowship of Saints and Sinners


Holy Space: Meditations for Itinerant Souls

Katie Archibald-Woodward is a recent graduate of Columbia Theological Seminary with many gifts, among them photography, leading worship and a smile that lights up a room.

You can find more of Katie Archibald-Woodward’s travelogues and photography at her blog.

Starting today and continuing every Tuesday and Thursday through Advent, we’ll move through a series of photo meditations on “holy space.” Our guide is photographer and travel writer Katie Archibald-Woodward and her inspirational “visual words.” If you’re a restless soul looking for more meaning, more truth and/or more life, we hope you’ll join us on this journey. Here is Katie, in her own words:

I recently traveled to the region of the world touted as “The Holy Land”.  The lands of Jordan, Israel, Palestine and the Egyptian Peninsula have been labeled so illustriously because they are the areas in which the world’s best known and most influential monotheistic religions originated and developed.  In addition to travels among these lands I also ventured to Turkey, a country saturated with pagan, Christian and Muslim history and holiness in its own right; thus it is included among these posts as well.     As one might guess, the holiest city in these lands, in the opinion of most, is Jerusalem.  It is the place of the Foundation Stone, believed to be the junction of heaven and earth and upon which the earth began, according to Orthodox Jews.  On this location the first and second Israelite temples were built, followed by a pagan (Roman) temple and then the Dome of the Rock built by the Muslims, some of whom (Sunnis) believe it is from this place Mohammed flew up to heaven.

                  So much has been said of these lands.  For millennia people have fought over them, longed to control them, and hungered to visit them. But what is it about Jerusalem and the surrounding undulating mountains, vast deserts, fertile valleys, and salty seas that made them the places in which God chose to be revealed — moreover, came to live and walk, according to Christian belief?  Why here?

                  The following blog posts offer my visual expressions as a sampling of further observations and reflections on these places called “holy”.  As we journey across space and time through the holy lands of Jordan, Israel, Palestine, and Turkey, perhaps together we might discover just what it is that sets them apart and crowns them with that supreme name.

Do you have a holy space that is pivotal in your story, one that you’d feel comfortable sharing with the rest of us saints and sinners, restless souls alike? Send it along and I’ll share them every Friday.



Previous Posts

A Christmas Homily
While they were there, the time came for the baby to be born, and she gave birth to her firstborn, a son. She wrapped him in cloths and placed him in a manger, because there was no guest room available for them. —Luke 2:6,7 The sheer physicality of this picture strikes me this Christmas. The ba

posted 1:54:50pm Dec. 24, 2014 | read full post »

Mental Health Break—Sprawl II
My favorite band these days is Arcade Fire, and I've featured the Canadian indie rock group before at this intersection between God and life. The lead singer studied Kirkegaard in college and their songs, like this one, are often subtle but brilliant critiques of the least aesthetically pleasing thi

posted 12:58:15pm Dec. 18, 2014 | read full post »

I Can't Breathe and the Widow's Cry—A Guest Post
Fellow saint and sinner Saskia de Vries is a neuroscientist in Seattle, Washington and has posted before at this intersection between God and life. She, like so many of us, is grappling with the tragedies of Eric Garner and Michael Brown and the larger systemic problem they seem to reveal—namely,

posted 2:10:09pm Dec. 11, 2014 | read full post »

Advent and Emptiness, Via Louis CK and the Prophet Isaiah
I've been making my way through the book of Isaiah. This morning's reading was from chapter 6, where the prophet Isaiah receives his call to go to the people of Israel and proclaim God's judgment of a people who have wandered away from God's purposes for them. Isaiah asks how long God's people will

posted 11:45:39am Dec. 09, 2014 | read full post »

Advent Resurrection
It may seem strange to pair Advent with resurrection. Usually resurrection comes more naturally at Easter. But at heart the labor pangs of all creation giving birth to the Christ child are a longing for a new start. Advent is a longing to be born again. Neuroscience now teaches that every minu

posted 2:47:38pm Dec. 04, 2014 | read full post »




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