Weekend Daybook: the evil, tragedy, memorials, and common grace edition

A week of collecting what I've been up to lately: places, people, books, podcasts, music, links & more for your weekend downtime.

You can consider this late from last week or early for next! We’ll be gone for the next couple of weeks and I look forward to catching back up with you in September, friends!

(1) photo from this week

A common grace found in Kennebunk, Maine: The MOST delicious lobster roll I’ve ever eaten + fresh squeezed lemonade. I will never forget this meal.

A common grace found in Kennebunk, Maine: The MOST delicious lobster roll I’ve ever eaten + fresh squeezed lemonade. I will never forget this meal.


(2) helpful podcasts covering the subject of gun control

As with most other important policies, gun control is complicated. It feels hopeful we may finally move to more common sense in regulation, but we need wise governance to navigate all the complexities. These two podcasts helped me think through this issue with more knowledge and nuance.

  1. Trump Says He’s Ready For Gun Measures | via KCRW’s Left, Right, and Center

  2. Constitutional Primers: Second Amendment | via Pantsuit Politics


(3) links remembering Toni Morrison

I’ve not yet had the courage to read her work. I keep waiting for the “right moment” to engage emotionally and intellectually. In the meantime, I’m grateful especially to one of my favorite writing peers, Allison Backous Troy, for pointing toward Morrison as “a powerful witness, Toni Morrison's God Help the Child brings us into the work of reconciliation, the work of the Cross.”

  1. Toni Morrison – Remembering the Award-winning Novelist [NPR] | via Englewood Review of Books

  2. The withering witness of Toni Morrison’s God Help the Child and The rough redemption of Toni Morrison’s Home by Allison Backous Troy | via Think Christian

  3. How Toni Morrison Countered the Canon by Karen Swallow Prior | via Think Christian


(4) beautiful examples of the Church responding to evil and tragedy in Dayton and El Paso

Slowly, slowly - and, sadly, too late for many - a few voices from the American Church are more clearly demonstrating a public response that sounds like what Jarvis J. Williams and Curtis A. Woods describe in the CT piece linked below : “We believe in a Savior who redeems, a Spirit who reconciles, and a gospel that is the antithesis of white supremacy.”

  1. Context for El Paso mass shooting from Sami DiPasquale, Executive Director of Ciudad Neuva

  2. Returning to the Lord in Times of Evil and Tragedy by Fr. Peter Coelho, Church of the Cross, Austin, TX

  3. A Litany of Lament and Repentance For Our Treatment of Immigrants and Refugees | via Caminemos Juntos

  4. Jesus, Deliver Us from This Racist Evil Age by Jarvis J. Williams and Curtis A. Woods | via CT


(5) remembrances on the 5th anniversary of Mike Brown’s death in Ferguson

Jemar Tisby’s piece reminded me that it was not only Michael Brown’s death and the subsequent protests in Ferguson that began to wake me up to my own racist complicity, but more specifically a question I asked an Intervarsity leader friend of mine after he returned from Urbana ‘15. I heard my own racism more clearly than ever and began to confess, repent and hope for reconciliation with my Black neighbors.

  1. Michael Brown Jr.’s Sisters Remember Their Brother on the Fifth Anniversary of His Police Shooting Death | via StoryCorps

  2. Five Years Later, Two Ferguson Protestors Reflect on the Pulitzer Prize-Winning Photo that Captured their Anguish — and Connection | via StoryCorps

  3. How Ferguson widened an enormous rift between black Christians and white evangelicals by Jemar Tisby | via Washington Post

  4. I’m a Shooting Survivor. If You’re Going to Pray for Us, Here’s How. by Taylor Schumann | via CT

  5. Ferguson Mother of God: Our Lady against all Gun Violence, 2015 by Mark Dukes

Ferguson Mother of God: Our Lady against all Gun Violence, Mark Dukes   Source

Ferguson Mother of God: Our Lady against all Gun Violence, Mark Dukes

Source


(6) photos from my first week participating in #AugustBreak2019

I’m always ready by August for a little daily prompt to keep paying attention to the beauty of summer, aren’t you?

There is much to be cynical about—and it is a good answer if there has not been an incarnation. But if that has happened, if the Word did become flesh, and if there are men and women who in and through their own vocations imitate the vocation of God, then sometimes and in some places the world becomes something more like the way it ought to be.
— Steven Garber, Visions of Vocation: Common Grace for the Common Good

(7) links featuring first-person narratives expanding our understanding of the Imago Dei

I hope you’ll take the time to read through this list I’ve curated. It covers an expanse of people and places, held together by the thread of society’s outliers. May reading the words translate into real-life noticing in our everyday lives.

  1. Confessing My Racism by Anna Broadway via Amy Julia Becker’s Thin Places at CT | How forgiveness could transform us all: “But insofar as we can call racism a blind spot (by which I don't in any way mean to absolve people of responsibility), Jesus taught a very different process for correction: start with your own sin.”

  2. Introducing: Mockingbird, History Lessons For Adults via Black Coffee with White Friends | "What if, all those years ago, when I asked Mrs. Jacka, “what should I be,” she’d been able to tell me, “Well, your people were the great pharaohs who were already here. They were from distant lands like Egypt and they arrived with gold spears to trade with the indigenous people who allowed them to stay and exchanged land for goods”? See a sample lesson here: Gimme shelter

  3. Christ in the Camps by Caitlin Flanagan via The Atlantic | Migrant children are suffering. Christians need to help: “But the Beatitudes come at you sideways sometimes, and that’s when you’re really in trouble. It occurred to me this morning that maybe as a Christian I’m also supposed to be meek.”

  4. My time with Jean Vanier and his mom, the grandmother of L’Arche by Ellen Rahner via America Magazine | "My time with Jean Vanier and his mom, the grandmother of L’Arche."

  5. The Fruits of Your Suffering: A Letter to My Refugee Mom by Adrienne Minh-Chau Le via On Being | "I have grown up so comfortably eating the fruits of your suffering."

  6. Going Home with Wendell Berry by Amanda Petrusich via The New Yorker | The writer and farmer on local knowledge, embracing limits, and the exploitation of rural America.

  7. The McDonald's Test by Chris Arnade via Plough | Learning to Love Back Row America


May your weekend include some rest and some fun with friends and family. Peace...

p.s. This post may contain affiliate links because I'm trying to be a good steward, and when you buy something through one of these links you don't pay more money, but in some magical twist of capitalism we get a little pocket change. Thanks!

Weekend Daybook: the Engagement edition

A week of collecting what I've been up to lately: places, people, books, podcasts, music, links & more for your weekend downtime.

(1) photo from this week

Our daughter Kendra got engaged! We’re so happy for her and her fiance, Jordan, and we loved celebrating with them this past week!  Many more photos and exclamation marks to come!

Our daughter Kendra got engaged! We’re so happy for her and her fiance, Jordan, and we loved celebrating with them this past week!

Many more photos and exclamation marks to come!


(2)-part article published for The Telos Collective

We live in a culture of workism where people both define themselves by their work and struggle to find its meaning and purpose. In this two-part series, I explored a missional approach to the areas of identity and vocation.

  1. In Part 1, she shares how listening to the 9-to-5 stories of her community has opened a path for blessing and connection: Why Am I Here?”: A Missional Approach to Identity and Vocation

  2. In Part 2 of her blog series on vocation and mission, Tamara Hill Murphy of Church of the Apostles shares firsthand experience that offices can double as confessionals and work-related prayers as benedictions: The Workplace: America’s New Church?


(3) sweet videos about fathers and sons

  1. Can’t get enough of this adorable father-son conversation.

  2. This son reminds his dad and the rest of us what matters most!

  3. Negative Space is an Oscar-nominated short film animation that depicts a father-and-son relationship through the art of packing a suitcase.


(4) rubrics for a Christian political imagination

  1. The Grey Area is Holy Ground by Marilyn McEntyre via Comment Magazine | "The bottom line for great compromisers: "It's not that simple."

  2. The Christian Mandate to Subvert Tribalism by Judy Wu Dominick via CT | From 2017 and more important to read than ever: "Our call to pursue nuance, a love-infused, subversive force."

  3. Against Nationalism: A Reading List for Christians via Englewood Review of Books | “How do we balance our biblical call to love, care for, and seek the welfare of our neighbors with our identity as followers of Jesus, whose reign was not of this world?”

  4. The Economics of Love by Peter Mommsen via Plough | Beyond Capitalism – and Socialism


(5) books I’m reading right now

  1. One Blood:Parting Words to the Church on Race and Love by John Perkins - Hearts & Minds Bookstore | IndieBound | | Amazon

  2. A Place in Time: Twenty Stories of the Port William Membership by Wendell Berry - Hearts & Minds Bookstore | IndieBound | | Amazon

  3. The Heart’s Necessities: Life in Poetry by Jane Tyson Clement with Becca Stevens - Plough | Hearts & Minds Bookstore | Amazon

  4. The Lowland by Jhumpa Lahiri - Hearts & Minds Bookstore | IndieBound | | Amazon

  5. Call the Midwife: Shadows of the Workhouse by Jennifer Worth - Hearts & Minds Bookstore | IndieBound | | Amazon


(6) posts from the archives

  1. 2017 - All Who Enter Here [writing at Art House America] (This is an essay I keep writing and re-writing, and it feels meaningful again this year as my Grandfather’s health steadily declines. “Year by year, we formed a kind of family liturgy, a joyful way of being together that transcended the reality of the modest little cabin and weedy pond. The liturgy expanded to jubilation… underneath Grandpa’s homemade picnic pavilion, eating Grandma’s macaroni and potato salads.”)

  2. 2014 - Orange (August is a good time for paying attention to the daily things, don't you think? Sometimes these prompts feel a little self-indulgent for me, but I think it’s a really good time to participate with #AugustBreak2019 again!)

  3. 2012 - My life as a rabbit (“People called me, emailed me and sought me out after church to share great part-time job ideas: personally assist a speaker and life trainer, copywriter for a sales company, provide childcare. All I wanted to do was to get paid for reading books all day.”)

  4. 2011 - Saying good-bye hurts like hell OR How My Husband's Personal Trainer Taught Me About Love (“When talking with people about this fact, my husband has taken to quoting a well-loved line from Christmas Vacation, " If I woke up tomorrow with my head sewn to the carpet, I wouldn't be more surprised than I am now.")

  5. 2011 - Farewell Gifts (“We're still licking our wounds a bit, I'll admit. Still in mourning over lost dreams. Still shaking our heads at the lunacy of leaving behind these once-in-a-lifetime kind of friendships.”)

Natalie at camp.jpg

4 years ago

2015 - Natalie the fire-keeper. This will always be one of my favorites!


(7+) photos from our little celebration for Kendra & Jordan’s engagement!


May your weekend include some rest and some fun with friends and family. Peace...

p.s. This post may contain affiliate links because I'm trying to be a good steward, and when you buy something through one of these links you don't pay more money, but in some magical twist of capitalism we get a little pocket change. Thanks!

Weekend Daybook: July edition

A month of collecting what I've been up to lately: places, people, books, podcasts, music, links & more for your weekend downtime.

(1) photo from this month

I love this photo my sister took during our annual Hill Family Vacation at LeTourneau Camp on Canandaigua Lake in NY. Sweet moments.

I love this photo my sister took during our annual Hill Family Vacation at LeTourneau Camp on Canandaigua Lake in NY. Sweet moments.


(2) things I published this month

  1. What I Read January - June, part 1 [from the book pile 2019] (Life’s been a bit upside down lately, and I’m especially grateful for the companionship of good books. Hope you enjoy the micro reviews + publisher blurbs!)

  2. Why Am I Here?”: A Missional Approach to Identity and Vocation (I’m grateful to contribute to the excellent conversation at The Telos Collective and was pleasantly surprised to see it published this week. We live in a culture of workism where people both define themselves by their work and struggle to find its meaning and purpose.)


(3) summer-related blessings and encouragements

  1. Summer Benediction by Malcolm Guite via The Cultivating Project (Short, but oh so sweet.)

  2. Summer Stress and Summer Rest: A Spiritual Director’s Thoughts on Holidays via Kutsu Companions (In a season of intense caregiving, Brian and I are trying to best discern what it means to rest. Anyone else in the same boat?)

  3. Seminary Grads: God’s Name for You Matters More Than Your Masters by W. David O. Taylor via CT , excerpted from Master of God, Beloved of God: My Commencement Speech at Fuller Theological Seminary via Diary of An Arts Pastor (A good word for all of us from our beloved friend, David. “And so, beloved, remember your true name and, as you exercise your Jedi powers of naming the world faithfully and responsibly, carefully and graciously, remind the people of God of their true name, too: the beloved.”)


(4) links about the person I’d vote for if I had to vote today

  1. Mark Charles for President 2020: “Building a nation where ‘We the People’ truly means: All the People” (You can see his campaign announcement here.)

  2. An Independent, Native voice: Mark Charles launches 2020 presidential campaign by Dario Thundercloud via Last Real Indians

  3. Navajo man wants the nation to hear its official apology via CNN

  4. Mark Charles on Reconciliation, Lament, and a Campaign for All the People via Pantsuit Politics


(5) podcast episodes I’ve enjoyed this month

  1. Touching Eternity: A Conversation with Scott Cairns and Malcolm Guite on The Image Podcast (A bit literary geeky, but cozy as a cup of tea.)

  2. Tony Hale on the Creative Life and Process on Fuller Studio's Conversing with Mark Labberton (Is it possible to be a fan of an actor without actually being a fan of any of his shows? That’s me + Tony Hale.)

  3. Episode 32 - The (Beautiful) Reality of Befriending Someone with Down Syndrome on The Lucky Few (A good word for all of us, and especially for families.)

  4. #18 Hell and Heaven on Ask NT Wright Anything (I’m really enjoying the format of this podcast!)

  5. Season 2 | Episode 1: Raising Peacemakers on Preemptive Love’s Love Anyway (A new way to think about what it means to care about our children’s safety.)


(6) posts from the archives

  1. 2017 - In past years, July seems to have been a fruitful writing month for me, at least at Think Christian. These are 3 of my favorite articles I ever wrote for them. Catastrophe’s Refreshingly Ancient Take on Marriage  , Lindy West, Barbara Brown Taylor, and Embracing Our God-Given Bodies , and in July 2015, Instead of Facebook, a book of Faces

  2. 2015 - Monday morning thoughts: dancing bear act, crash helmets and a Doxology (A, hopefully undramatized, stream of conscious meditation about Sunday worship which I try often to recall.)

  3. 2014 - The 14th Annual Epic Family Tradition (It’s 2019 and we’re still managing to keep it going!)

  4. 2012 - Dying the Many Little Deaths of Ordinary Service (Still accurate: “I am a weakling when it comes to everyday service. There's a whole set of psychological reasons -- some rather legitimate -- I could give as rationale. At the end of the day, though, I don't like to do mundane, grubby work. Plain and simple. The purpose for this disclaimer is to say I've only just begun to learn what I'm about to share here, four practices of everyday service.”)

  5. 2010 - "Sometimes we have to change jobs in order to maintain our vocation." -- Eugene Peterson (That year Brian had to lay himself off, and we’ve never been the same since.)

  6. 2009 - Meditation [disciplines of the inner life] (Another epiphany I still find relatable: “God wants to form a Grand Canyon in me and all I want to be is a rain gutter.”)

HFV.+Bethany+Beach.jpg

13 years ago

Hill Family Vacation 2006, Bethany Beach, DE

July.HFV13.jpg

this year

Hill Family Vacation 2019, Canandaigua Lake, NY


(a bunch of) photos from this year’s Hill Family Vacation

Natalie and my niece Karis spent hours making this video highlight reel of our 19th annual family vacation. It’s kind of epic. (Avenger Endgame fans keep your ears open for the credit score.)


May your weekend include some rest and some fun with friends and family. Peace...

p.s. This post may contain affiliate links because I'm trying to be a good steward, and when you buy something through one of these links you don't pay more money, but in some magical twist of capitalism we get a little pocket change. Thanks!

Weekend Daybook: lots of reading and some television recommendations thrown in

Until Advent (minus some vacation weeks this summer) I’ll share some of the things helping me to worship God, love people, and enjoy beauty each week for you to peruse during your weekend downtime.

(1) photo from this week

our little patch of springtime

our little patch of springtime


(2) more meaningful resources on the meaning of the Feast of the Ascension

  1. Ascensiontide Novena , What Are the Rogation Days? and Rogation Prayer Bunting via The Homely Hours (I’m so grateful to learn how to intentionally and devotionally prepare for Pentecost! I also printed out that bunting and there’s no small children in my home.)

  2. Saint Augustine’s Homily on the Feast of the Ascension of our Lord via Beliefnet (So profound in so few words.)


(3) new blog posts this week!

  1. Sixth Sunday in Eastertide: Going Away / Coming Down (I’m enthralled with “Sky Ladder”, Cai Guo Qiang’s pyrotechnic installation art. Video included on the blog post.)

  2. Practice Resurrection with Amanda McGill (Southwest Ohio) (Make sure you take a moment to listen to Amanda reading us the poem in the video at the top of the post, and please don’t miss the adorable poetry buffs who show up at the end!)

  3. Ascension Day! (I hope the collection I’ve curated for us this week will be meaningful for you, as well. You can see previous years' Ascension Day meditations here. )



(5) insights into the intersection of literacy and strong towns

  1. Librarians Are Trying to Encourage Children to Read—by Bringing Books Straight to the Laundromat by David Beard via Mother Jones (Several initiatives across the country are turning laundromats into libraries to front-load literacy.)

  2. The Secret Life of Libraries By Eric Klineberg via Slate (The children, readers, learners, neighbors, and karaoke singers who use one local library every day.)

  3. How a Local Bookstore Can Make Your Town Richer—In More Than One Way by Kea Wilson via Strong Towns

  4. 16 Incredible Libraries From Around the World by Jessica Miley via Interesting Engineering (These wonderful libraries both new and old might distract you from your reading. We’ve visited #14 several times!)

  5. Community and creativity in mundane retail spaces via Austin Kleon (In The Great Good Place: Cafes, Coffee Shops, Bookstores, Bars, Hair Salons, and Other Hangouts at the Heart of a Community, Ray Oldenburg praises “third places” where people can just get together and hang out as essential to healthy public life.)


(6) links inspiring us embrace the intersection of spring and summer!

  1. Bookish Spring Weekends: 10 Things To Do If You’re Feeling Bored via A Little Blue Book (Not sure how many of us have the luxury of boredom, but here’s a handy list just in case!)

  2. Liturgies for Springtime via Every Moment Holy (My friend texted me this week that she was praying for me while she planting flower seeds. Beautiful, right? )

  3. It’s BACK! Project Summer: Frugal Fun Guide plus your own FREE Printable Summer Planner via Cha-Ching on a Shoestring (Huge list of free and cheap stuff to do with your kids this summer from my brilliant sister!)

  4. 2019 Summer Reading Guide via Modern Mrs. Darcy (Any of you a Modern Mrs. Darcy groupie? I’m hoping to read at least 1 title from each cateogry this summer!)

  5. 10 Fiction Classics for Summer Reading! via Englewood Review of Books (Some of my favorites are included in this list. I’m adding #8 to my TBR for this summer.)

  6. How to Do Kids’ Discipleship in the Woods by Kelli B. Trujillo via CT Women (Creation care does more than conservation. It cultivates faith formation, says A Rocha.)


(7) blog posts from this week in the archives

  1. 2016 - Alex is a college grad! (A fun update during our Season of Fortunate Events).

  2. 2016 - We’re moving: A stream-of-consciousness reflection (It's these moments when God's love makes us appropriately small so that His presence can loom large that I most believe in His goodness + my Friends playlist!)

  3. 2013 - We are the Pentecost-ed (Before this epiphany I mostly felt a low-grade anger that God letting people die during Eastertide was wrecking my liturgical mojo.)

  4. 2013 - This one’s for you [Ryan] (I love you, Ryan Anthony Hill.  Happy Birthday, brother and friend.)

  5. 2012 - You don’t have to be a worship leader to worship God in a mall parking lot (Meditating the practice of everyday worship in honor of my aunt and because I lived in Austin at the time of this writing and was learning that sometimes dependent prayer is the only tool I had left to find decent parking.)

  6. 2011 - A new way to be human guest post: Forgiveness (I collect stories of radical forgiveness and this one from my friend is a good one.)

  7. 2009 - Confession: Part 1 and Part 2 (Disciplines of the Inner Life series)

  8. 2008 - Pick your own metaphor (How many times have we moved during the month of May?!?)

Alex grad.Brian.jpg

3 years ago

Father and son at Alex’s graduation from Rice University, Houston.


May your weekend include plenty of space to practice resurrection. Hallelujah! Christ is risen, friends!

p.s. This post may contain affiliate links because I'm trying to be a good steward, and when you buy something through one of these links you don't pay more money, but in some magical twist of capitalism we get a little pocket change. Thanks!

Weekend Daybook is back: Mother's Day, my graduation, important recommendations for immigration updates and more!

Until Advent (minus some vacation weeks this summer) I’ll share some of the things helping me to worship God, love people, and enjoy beauty each week for you to peruse during your weekend downtime.

(1) photo from this week

May.B%26T+in+felt1.jpg

Our friend Jen Thompson, the felting genius, surprised me with this sweet little set for a graduation gift. I CAN’T STOP GIGGLING! Brian and I are going to start using this for all of our profile pics.

Also, they make me think of this…

what-about-bob-dreyfuss.jpg

I see a whole new way new way to solve marriage conflict.

Thanks, Jen!


(2) new blog posts this week!

  1. Third Sunday of Eastertide: Worthy - Hallelujah! Christ is risen! The celebration continues with the Great Fifty Days called Eastertide. Stay tuned for a variety of celebratory posts here on the blog.

  2. Practice Resurrection with Micah Thompson (Hinesburg, VT) - Speaking of the Thompsons and celebratory posts, here’s the first guest post in a new-and-improved version of the the Practice Resurrection series!


(3) Mother’s Day favorites

Over twenty-seven years in and I’m still learning how to be a mother. I’m learning it never gets easier, but it does get deeper and wider as my capacity for love increases. I’ve said so many times before that I’m learning Jesus stretches out time.

 
Relax. You’ve got time, it’s going to take time.

I know, I know - old ladies have stopped you in the store five trillion times to warn you that the time flies by faster than you can imagine and that you need to make the most of every single moment with your cherubs. And that’s sort of true.

Most true, though, is that Jesus is a redeemer of time. He moves outside of time and space, He returns time and stretches it out in just the right ways so He can save you and your kids. When you read any practical suggestions I have to offer please take your time, consider, pray, laugh, relax.

Put another way, maybe the very, very best advice I have to offer parents is this:

Reject hyper-vigilance, embrace spacious grace.
— from my "Parenting Unrehearsed" series (2012)
 

I’ve been grateful for the increasing reminders over the past few years to invite all women into the blessing of Mother’s Day, and to remember there are many ways to share maternal love (indeed, God is the source of maternal love and makes it available for all men and women to receive and to offer.) I hope we’ll continue to remember this reality in our liturgies and our prayers. At the same time, I also believe there’s a place to give thanks for the mothers who are in the middle of the daily grind of it all. Here’s some of my favorite ways to say “We see you!”

  1. The poem and playlist I keep giving my mom each year: A Poem and A Playlist For My Dear Momma

  2. Maybe my favorite essay ever for Mother’s Day: Fifty Things About My Mother | via Slate

  3. In her 2018 album, By the Way, I Forgive, Brandi Carlile released one of my favorite songs ever reflecting the kind of sacrifice motherhood invites. You can listen to the song here: The Mother. (This song carries even more meaning for me this year as this past December we gave our youngest daughter, Natalie the second middle name Evangeline to celebrate her 21st birthday. Listen to the song to see what I mean.)

 

(4) links to help us continue to celebrate Eastertide

  1. Easter Is Just Getting Started by Andrew Peterson - “I feel in my chest a loosening of tension, a relief that the grieving of Lent is past, the hard-fought self-discipline is behind me, and I can enter the days of work and rest with a subtly euphoric freedom from the thistle and thorn that infests the ground." | via The Rabbit Room

  2. Thou Shalt Celebrate (a book excerpt) by Dallas Willard - "The ‘strong drink’ mentioned here was, shall we say, not exactly sassafras tea!" | via Renovaré

  3. Read from two bloggers going all in for #practiceresurrection2019 - Minding the Gap by Kathy Swaar and Practicing Resurrection 2019 (a post for each of the 50 days)! by Peggy Nagy at Inkblot Life.

  4. Happy As Flowers & Peeps by Gretchen Joanna - "There is not one word for the way so many of us Orthodox feel when we have come to the end of Lent and Holy Week, and are finally standing in church on Pascha night, exhausted, brain dead, dizzy from sleepiness, feeling a little (or a lot) out of whack from keeping strange hours and eating little." | via Gladsome Lights

A photo of Church of the Apostles (Fairfield, CT) on Easter morning, 2019. Thanks to our friend,  Adiel Dominguez , for this photo!

A photo of Church of the Apostles (Fairfield, CT) on Easter morning, 2019. Thanks to our friend, Adiel Dominguez, for this photo!


(5) important links to understand immigration crisis

This week I sent the following letter to approximately three-dozen friends and family who serve the Church as pastors and ordained ministers. Now I’m passing the letter and the links to you.

 
Dear friends and family serving the Body of Christ,

I’m privileged to know personally so many beautiful shepherds of Jesus’ little flock and am taking a bit of a risk to reach out to you as one collective about an issue that matters deeply to me. I understand that your hearts, minds, and calendars are full of weighty matters and that you are called upon daily (hourly?) to respond in love to all sorts of human concern and suffering. For that reason, please don’t feel obligated to reply to this email, but would you, in the coming week, consider reading one news article and subscribing to updates from one Christian engaging the subject of migrants seeking asylum - particularly the women and children fleeing domestic violence - at the U.S. borders (primarily the southern border)?

I’ve been following this conversation for a while and have tried to discern the voices that engage well the intersection of policy, human suffering, current headlines, and our Christian call for allegiance to the Kingdom of Jesus above all others. Sarah Quezada is the voice that’s become one of the most valuable to me at this intersection and, while I’ve shared her updates on social media, I’m trying to learn the most fruitful ways to communicate this sort of information. I’m sure I don’t need to tell you that the fruitfulness of conversation on social media is diminishing, at best.

Since I’m fortunate to know personally (heck, I’m related to half of you receiving this email!) so many of you leading and influencing the Church, I wanted to pass Sarah’s name to you to engage at whatever level you’re able.

Thank you, in advance, for welcoming my request. I hold you each in high regard and pray for us all as we seek to build up the beloved body of Christ in this gnarly world.

Hallelujah! He is risen!
Tamara
— Letter I wrote this past week to pastor and ordained minister friends and family
 
  1. Sarah Quezada: newsletterbookTwitterFB, & IG. If nothing else, subscribe to her newsletter for a brief, but essential weekly round-up of current events at the border.

  2. This recent post from Sarah especially caught my attention: “Collectively, we chose darkness. But the light keeps showing up and breaking through.”

  3. 'Someone Is Always Trying To Kill You': The United States cannot erect a wall and expect women to resign themselves to being slaughtered. An NYT opinion piece by Sonia Nazario The article I'm asking you to read this week (it's a difficult one to read, but I found deeply important in my understanding of the essence of an emergency at the border). 

  4. If you'd like to be encouraged about the way the Church is ministering in Arizona, here's a recent article Sarah shared in her newsletter: Why this Arizona grandmother feels compelled to take in migrants seeking asylum.

  5. One of Plough Publishing’s newest releases reminds us of the legacy of walls - A Book to End All Walls: An Interview with Uk-Bae Lee (not just for children!)


(6) photos from my graduation residency

I'm delighted to let you know that on the last Monday in April I completed my Selah Spiritual Direction certification. Thank you so much for all of the encouragement and support so many of you've offered the past two years. In fact, I couldn't have done it without our community.

I've been grateful to build a small practice with directees and am looking forward to serving a non-profit organization working in a small village in Mexico as a spiritual director available to faculty and staff at the beginning and end of their summer institute. I look forward to beginning one or more spiritual direction groups and possibly adding a retreat in fall 2019 or winter 2020.

I'm eager to invite more directees to my practice so please feel free to share my contact information and web page with your family and friends . There’s a contact form at the bottom of the page to send any questions.

Thank you, again, to all who participated in God's abundant and perfectly-timed gift to us. We're forever grateful.


May.kids1.jpg

1 year ago

My kids were all together in Texas and sent me this photo on Mother’s Day. I love them.


May your weekend include plenty of space to practice resurrection. Hallelujah! He is risen, friends!

p.s. This post may contain affiliate links because I'm trying to be a good steward, and when you buy something through one of these links you don't pay more money, but in some magical twist of capitalism we get a little pocket change. Thanks!