Creating Communities of Love and Compassion

Like many you, I found myself filled with terrible sadness after hearing about the massive act of violence carried out upon members of the Tree of Life synagogue in the Squirrel Hill community located in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. As someone who grew up outside Pittsburgh, this is such a terrible tragedy for many of my friends … [Read more…]

Rendering Regret, Receiving Redemptive Grace

As a hospital chaplain whose often with patients in their last few days of life, there is a sense of privilege in being able to provide spiritual care to those who are reaching the end of their physical life. With many of these patients, there is a feeling of peace and acceptance in their hearts … [Read more…]

Finding Reconciliation Despite Political Differences

Last year, I visited the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum in Springfield, Illinois. While I have studied a great deal about Lincoln, I found myself really taken back about the struggles which Lincoln, a simple country lawyer from Illinois, faced immediately after taking office on March 4, 1861. From a country deeply divided over … [Read more…]

Seeking Help From Others

Whenever we are able to help someone in need, we feel a sense of purpose. No matter if it’s helping a family member, friend, or even a stranger, those who give often feel a higher sense of reward than those they served. However, when we find ourselves seeking help when we are in need, it … [Read more…]

Come As You Are

I was about ten-years-old when I found myself standing in front of the back door of my childhood home ready to go to church with my mother on Easter Sunday. As my mother was gathering her purse and car keys, she turned around and looked at me in horror. “You are wearing blue jeans?” she … [Read more…]

Seasons of Change

A few years ago, my father made the decision to sell the family house where I was raised. This little blue brick house which was in the countryside, had a beautiful backfield, lush green grass, and bright colorful flowers that my mother worked so hard to plant. However, after I moved to California for seminary, … [Read more…]

Goodbyes and Farewells

Last week, I found myself saying goodbye to those in my congregation at UniPlace Christian Church where I had been serving as an outreach community minister for the past two years. As I find myself excited to be transitioning into my next call of becoming a hospital chaplain, saying goodbye to those who have been … [Read more…]

Embracing The Passage of Time

As a small child, I can remember his towering figure, his energetic personality and Irish blue eyes that would light up every time we as his grandchildren would enter into his home. My grandfather, who would run with us in the playground, take us fishing and pretend to eat the worms we were using as … [Read more…]

Remaking Life After Loss

Stepping into my father’s bathroom during a trip home from college, I could not help but notice the tacky blue walls and the ceramic fish that hung off of them. In a way, it resembled a questionable seafood restaurant you would find along the Florida interstate. But at the same time, the particle board walls … [Read more…]

Savoring The Sweet Spirit

In the hall is where I would find her. Sometimes she would be moping the floor, other times helping fold sheets or pushing a cart of dirty laundry. Sometimes she was sharing a story about God’s movement in her life, sometimes she would be praying with others, and sometimes she would be humming hymns to … [Read more…]