Category Chaplaincy

Pandemic Prayer for College Students

God of acceptance letters, scholarships, and internships, we ask you to comfort: those whose “best years of their lives” were uprooted. those who dread going home. those who are savoring every minute of extra time with family. those whose family members are quarantined elsewhere because they are likely exposed. those who frantically packed up door […]

What Do You Treasure?

The last time I saw many of my college students in person was Ash Wednesday. During the day, the Episcopal Campus Minister, Lutheran Campus Minister, and I hosted Ashes to Go at the Free Expression Tunnel on campus. Some were thrilled to see us; others murmured that we shouldn’t be there. One refused to take […]

Let Love Lead

I spent last week as Conference Pastor for Montreat Youth Conference. For those not familiar, it’s a Presbyterian (USA) conference in the Blue Ridge Mountains for senior high teens-about 1,000 of them-and their adult leaders. I’m a product of Montreat Youth Conferences, and have had various roles as a youth planning team member, college student […]

Maundy Thursday

Lent has been my favorite liturgical season for decades, and became more and more tangible as a pediatric chaplain. I love imposing ashes on Ash Wednesday as our collective dust gathers to be reminded we are finite, and we belong to God, as we intentionally go to the wilderness for a season.  Maundy Thursday is […]

Unplanned Community at Planned Parenthood

Yesterday I was asked how I can support Planned Parenthood as clergy. I don’t speak for all clergy, but here’s my story: After I learned of my clergy spouse’s affairs, I called my OBGYN and requested an appointment ASAP. Since we had been seeing her for infertility, she enthusiastically returned my call thinking I wanted […]

Birthday Candles

My mom died about thirty minutes after midnight on a Saturday night. Since Monday of that week she told everyone she was going to die on Sunday, and sure enough she kept her word with that just as she always did. Earlier that Saturday night, while I was washing her sparkly silver hair, I mentioned […]

Choreographing a Crisis

As a chaplain and pastor, I am inevitably with folks during periods of crisis, trauma, and chaos.  One of my mantras that I repeat time and time again to families during such times is, “Your crisis. Your call. Your choreography.” I say this because often folks try to please everyone else in their extended family, […]