Advent Reflection – If You are Weary

We put up our Christmas tree yesterday. It is beautiful - a Balsam pine tree that brings the forest into our living room. It's a tall tree, reaching proudly to our ceiling, decked out in the season's finest white lights and many years of ornaments. I sit beside our tree and I almost forget that … Continue reading Advent Reflection – If You are Weary

Thanksgiving for the Broken-hearted

Robynn and I were recently texting about Thanksgiving. This year both of us will fill our houses and hearts with people who are hurting. These will be the tables of the broken-hearted, chairs of the grieving, glasses of the bewildered, and dessert plates of the deserted. What do we do when our tables are filled … Continue reading Thanksgiving for the Broken-hearted

Morning Sky Over Central

It is windy today as I walk toward the subway. Leaves of varying shades of brown, yellow, and faded orange dance in the street, nature defying the human view of a Monday morning. I turn the corner on Massachusetts Avenue, and the morning sky over Central Station in Cambridge meets me with beauty and hope. … Continue reading Morning Sky Over Central

Death, Loss, and TCK Grief

Yesterday I unexpectedly found myself by a lone bench on an empty ocean front. A boat was just off the shore, solitary but securely anchored in the sea. I ached with the unexpected beauty, the symbolic solitude of the boat. I felt like this boat. Alone, but securely anchored. As I stood there, a scarf … Continue reading Death, Loss, and TCK Grief

The Funeral Cocoon

November has come and the golden-red hope of Autumn is rapidly turning to bare trees and chilly winds. It is a cold time to lay a coffin in the ground. We sat in a small chapel at the Massachusetts Veteran’s Cemetery in Winchendon, Massachusetts.  Winchendon is the town where I was born, where I took … Continue reading The Funeral Cocoon

In Memory:Ralph Edward Brown, June 7,1926 – October 24,2017

On June 7th, in 1926, a baby boy was born to a family in the city of Pittsfield, Massachusetts. He was fourth in the family, joining three sisters, a mom and a dad. Two years later his youngest sister was born and the family was complete. He was named Ralph Edward Brown and he is … Continue reading In Memory:Ralph Edward Brown, June 7,1926 – October 24,2017

Empty Spaces

I walked through the darkened living room just now and gave a little gasp as I looked toward your spot.  Your chair is so empty.  Gone is your big personality and sheer joy at being alive. Gone is the glass of water, the box of tissues, the tank of oxygen. Gone is your Swiss Army … Continue reading Empty Spaces

My Response to #Metoo

Social media has been alive and active with the status "Me Too" - largely posted by women. Some have just typed the words "Me Too" or #metoo, while others have put a longer explanation under the words. If all the women who have been sexually harassed or assaulted wrote "Me too" as a status, we … Continue reading My Response to #Metoo

It’s Not the Way it’s Supposed to Be

Friends, my youngest cousin tragically lost her husband just a day ago. My heart is breaking for her and her two littles. It's not the way it's supposed to be. They are a young family and my heart hurts thinking of the grief and loss that they are experiencing. He leaves behind so many who … Continue reading It’s Not the Way it’s Supposed to Be

On Lost Cats and Lost Kids

"Tigger! Tigger!" It is around nine at night and I am half way home when I hear the call. A mom is slowly walking up the street, two mournful kids trailing behind. Every few steps they call out "Tigger! Tigger!" "Oh!" I stop. "Are you looking for a kitty?" "Yes," the mom replies. "She seems … Continue reading On Lost Cats and Lost Kids

“Just Your Presence”

A beautiful article in the Boston Globe today tells the story of a woman who is dying. She invited her friends over for a luncheon, a chance to celebrate while she still had life. One of the friends verbalized her feelings of awkwardness and helplessness in the face of her friend's suffering. As she did … Continue reading “Just Your Presence”

On Monasteries, Children, and Loving Our Enemies

Gunmen Kill at Least 28 Coptic Christians in Egypt The headline spares nothing, except that there were children. I numbly read the article describing the pilgrimage. The group was headed to St. Samuel Monastery for a pilgrimage when pick up trucks reportedly drove up to the busses and began firing automatic weapons. I read as … Continue reading On Monasteries, Children, and Loving Our Enemies

When You Can’t Settle in the Place You Call Home

A couple of years ago, an anonymous letter came to Communicating Across Boundaries. The letter began like this: It just doesn't go away.... The writer goes on to speak of an unsettled weariness and dissatisfaction, a boredom with life in one's passport country. "I’m afraid I may have a chronic case of ennui. Most of … Continue reading When You Can’t Settle in the Place You Call Home

A Brief Reflection on Airports and Life

I am bleary-eyed at the Orlando airport. There's a reason why the infamous "they" tell you to get to the airport early - long security lines extended far into the lounge area. We sighed as we inched our way through, a bright green electronic sign informing us that the process would take 35 to 45 … Continue reading A Brief Reflection on Airports and Life

Broken

Over the weekend, the father-in-law of one of my colleague's was badly injured in a bike accident. When I inquired as to how he was doing, he simply said "Broken".  With multiple fractures and bruises, that is the most descriptive word possible.  Broken.  Early this morning we received word that my mother-in-law died. Her body … Continue reading Broken

Lenten Journey: Palm Fronds and Hosannas

Palm fronds await us as we enter into our parish. It is Palm Sunday - that joyous day before Holy Week, where all of life makes sense as Jesus rides into Jerusalem, greeted by masses of people proclaiming him king. Unlike those crowds who gathered that day so long ago, we know what is coming. … Continue reading Lenten Journey: Palm Fronds and Hosannas

When Your Fear Goes Through the Roof–A Repost

I've worked for hours on a piece that isn't ready yet.... I'm trying to wrangle some of my heart's response to the past couple of weeks into words. It hasn't gone smoothly. So until I get it done I give you this piece I wrote in November 2015. The situations have changed. Perhaps the fear … Continue reading When Your Fear Goes Through the Roof–A Repost

A Life Overseas – To the One Who is Left Behind

Hi Readers! I was at A Life Overseas yesterday writing to those who are left behind. You may have already seen a first version of this post a couple of years ago, but if not I would love it if you joined me! "You can kiss your family and friends good-bye and put miles between … Continue reading A Life Overseas – To the One Who is Left Behind