Fellowship of Saints and Sinners

Fellowship of Saints and Sinners

Fellowship of Saints and Sinners Archives

Grace Sticks…Even In Church

Sometimes God shows up in unlikely places. Take church for example. This past Sunday during the prayers of the people, a beautiful couple stood up to ask the congregation to agree with them in faith that their little boy would […]


5 Tips for Facing Our Fears

Early this morning, I was just drifting off into the halcyon waters of deep sleep REM when my son woke me up to say he was scared. I was non-plussed on a third consecutive night of one or another or […]


God of the Gaps: Survey Finds Americans Pray More in Disasters

It’s another week of hermitic writing, I’m afraid, so you’ll be hearing less from me as I push through edits from a second revision. But this morning I stumbled upon a report from Religion Today which I found interesting in […]


Mental Health Break- “Just a Ride”

What was to be Sunday’s serenade is now music for a manic Monday: “Just a Ride” by Jem is a reminder that life, much like writing, is a ride with ups and downs. The key is to let go and […]


Musical Mental Health Break- Bach’s Cello Suite No. 5 in C Minor with Yo-Yo Ma

Yo-Yo Ma played Bach’s Cello Suite No. 5 in C Minor at Thursday’s interfaith prayer and healing service in Boston, where the President and First Lady were in attendance after the tragedy of this week’s Boston Marathon. In an interview […]


6 Tips for Letting Go in Loss

The older I get the more I’m convinced a whole lot of life is about letting go. The only problem is I’m not very good at it. Maybe you can identify. Here’s a short list that helps me let go […]


“How Prayer is Transforming Nations”

Are you doing a program for the Lord or welcoming the presence of the Lord? That was the question put before an audience by a guest speaker at World Vision years ago, at a time when our family was living in […]


Centering Prayer and “Melodrama”

The other day I stopped by a centering prayer group for the first time in a very long while.  I wasn’t sure how I would find it, but I knew that centering is something I long for in the midst […]


Blessed Imperfection: A Girl Learns to Jump, and Her Mother, To Take Her First Steps

The following guest post ran yesterday on author Amy Julia Becker’s blog, “Thin Places,” as an installation in her ongoing series, “Perfectly Human.”  The reflections materialized after an afternoon spent teaching my now three-and-a-half-year-old daughter how to jump off a one-foot step.  […]


Hearing God Speak

  Lately, God has been talking to me about what it means to hear God speak. First, there was Stanford anthropologist TM Luhrmann’s article, which begged my initial question in Friday’s post: what does it mean to hear God speak? Then […]

Potty Prayers: How I Am Learning to Pray in the Bathroom

She almost hit me with the door as I was exiting the restroom of a company where I serve as a corporate chaplain. She’s the one in the front office who usually smiles when I come by. Not today. “How […]

“A Brief for the Defense”

  My favorite poem from the recent series by Andrew Sullivan (The Dish), Poems from the Year, contains refrains from the Old Testament, especially Ecclesiastes.  Even today’s reading from Nehemiah 8, where “the joy of the Lord is my strength,” […]

Visio Divina (The Visual Word): Advent Meditation 8

“O Holy Night”

We sang this hymn in church today.  In the wake of Friday morning’s massacre of a first-grade class of school children, the meaning of “O Holy Night” made me cry like a baby.  (Never mind my husband’s running joke that […]

The Power of Memory and Commitment

I’m a sucker for great stories, and usually I don’t look for them on ESPN. When I can’t sleep, I’ll turn on sports radio.  There’s something about the endless buzz of the commentary that helps me drop off. But when […]

Visio Divina (The Visual Word): Advent Meditation 6

Visio Divina: Advent Meditation 4 (Matthew 11)

Visio Divina: Advent Meditation 3 (Hosea 6)

Embracing the Hope of Advent

Yesterday on the first Sunday of Advent the preacher talked about hope. We all were asked to write down something from our personal lives that makes us hopeless, and then bring those scraps of paper up during Communion; they would […]

Remembering the Driftwood Artist

Almost one year ago, in the week leading up to Christmas, I met “the driftwood artist.” I wonder if he is still there peddling his art on that part of coastal highway that runs through St. Petersburg, Florida. And,  I […]

Observations on Grief

I’m learning more about the nature of grief as I make my way through Hilary Spurling’s fascinating biography of Pearl Buck.  Pearl’s only child, Carol, was born with a rare, degenerative condition that left her mentally disabled for the rest […]

FSS Reader Poll, Mid-Week Miscellany

Every week I receive a little report from the editors of Beliefnet summarizing the hot content of the week- all that stuff you guys are inclined to read out there.  It seems inquiring minds these days often want to know […]

Women Body Builders: Why The Church Needs More of Them

What few of her parishioners know, or are only now beginning to discover, is that on one Sunday morning eight years ago Rev. Dr. Amy Richter of St. Anne’s Parish in Annapolis, Maryland took second in the Wisconsin State Fair’s […]

“Serenity Now!”: Managing Anxiety

My two-year-old has discovered how to crawl through the ladder rungs of the bunk bed she shares with her brother.  She likes to demonstrate her new-found talent after a drawn-out bedtime routine of bath, books, prayers and hugs.  Until recently […]

The Freedom Riders

“Make ready for the Christ, whose smile- like lightning- sets free the song of everlasting glory that now sleeps in your paper flesh- like dynamite.”-Thomas Merton Just the other day my son played his first basketball game as the only […]

Previous Posts

Suicide, Depression and What Every Family Needs to Know
Today is the last day of National Suicide Prevention Month. That, and the suicide earlier this month of a young man in a church community in ...

posted 9:10:32pm Sep. 30, 2015 | read full post »

Mental Health Break — "On Melancholy Hill" and What's Up Next Here
Single motherhood for the next nine months — with my hubby traveling back and forth to Washington, D.C., thanks to a National Endowment of Humanities (NEH) research fellowship there — may reduce my presence here at this intersection. But I'm ...

posted 3:34:48pm Sep. 24, 2015 | read full post »

A Monk, A Man Behind Bars for Murder, and Their Life-Changing Correspondence
[caption id="attachment_5740" align="alignleft" width="400"] The U.S. locks up more people every year than any other country, including China, with a population roughly five times greater than that of the U.S.. 5% of the world's population ...

posted 8:37:11pm Sep. 16, 2015 | read full post »

This Old House: A Poem
              The dramatic transformation that our old house continues to ...

posted 9:19:25pm Sep. 11, 2015 | read full post »

2 Ways I'm Like Mr. Bean When On Retreat at the Monastery
It’s been a while since my last “retreat” at the monastery. The last time I was here, I was on ...

posted 4:25:13pm Sep. 09, 2015 | read full post »


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