Yearly Archives: 2012

Merry Solstice!

Today is the winter solstice — the 24 hour period featuring the most hours of darkness of the entire year. About 16 centuries ago, though, the winter solstice was thought to be December 25. It was during the 4th century that the Church began thinking it would be important to celebrate Christ’s birth as an […]

You do know this, right?

Every year it happens. Every year I see somewhere that someone is trying to turn the final 12 days of Advent into what they call “the 12 Days of Christmas.”  Usually this is done by a retailer, as a way to offer 12 sets of gift ideas.  (J.C. Penney has been famous for this in […]

He is speaking Peace

Below are some wonderful paragraphs from Deborah Streicker, a spiritual director who works out of Richmond Hill.  (Richmond Hill is where the St. Stephen’s Women’s Retreat will be in April.) “I will listen to what the Lord God is saying, for he is speaking  peace to his faithful people and to those who turn their […]

I’m thankful that I can swallow

It’s early on the morning of Thanksgiving.  I’m drinking a mug of coffee.  I’m thankful that I can swallow. I’m remembering the day before Thanksgiving six years ago.  I was a patient in the Progressive Ventilator Care Unit of Norfolk General Hospital. I had been on a ventilator for weeks in the ICU, as my […]

Feeling Grateful

On two occasions since we’ve lived in Williamsburg, storms have knocked out our electricity — each time for a week or more. This past week, Patty and I prepared ourselves for another long seige when Hurricane Sandy would blow through. Today everything around town was closed, which was ludicrous because it was simply a rainy […]

Busyness as a Deadly Sin

I’ve been thinking about an idea from Lauren Winner’s latest book, “Still”: that we should consider busyness to be just as dangerous as any of the Seven Deadly Sins identified by the medieval church. This thought is stunning in its simplicity.  But I think it has great merit. Try this out: busyness is sin.  (Sin […]


A friend of mine died the other day. We were high school classmates. We were not close friends, in touch continually over the years. In fact, I had entirely lost track of her until she re-surfaced at our 30th high school reunion. And then I didn’t talk with her again until our 40th reunion a […]