Category Holidays

Gratitude, Grief & Gumption

On November 23, 1982, the Tuesday before Thanksgiving, my mom was diagnosed with breast cancer. Since that gut-punch Tuesday, Thanksgiving in our family has been forever different. Years like that, shock and fear greatly outweighed the size of the turkey. And years like that, we wanted to hold each other close and curl up under […]

The Hospitality of Peace

A homily given at Winnetka Presbyterian Church on November 22, 2015 Isaiah 11:1-5 (NRSV) The Peaceful Kingdom A shoot shall come out from the stump of Jesse, and a branch shall grow out of his roots.The spirit of the Lord shall rest on him,the spirit of wisdom and understanding, the spirit of counsel and might,the spirit of knowledge […]

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 […]

Some Lady Holding A Baby

A few days before Christmas two years ago I was standing in a grocery store check-out line when the customer in front of me asked the clerk if she had any Christmas stamps. The conversation went like so: Customer: “Do you have Christmas stamps?” Clerk: “No. We just have Liberty Bell and some lady holding […]

Blue Christmas

This time last December 13, I crafted two prayers for Church Health Reader’s winter edition featuring Blue Christmas and Longest Night Services while I sat in a surgical waiting room. My mom had a liter of fluid in her right lung, so a surgical oncologist inserted a chest tube to remove the fluid. This is a […]

Prayer for Children of All Ages

As with Prayer for Parents and Those Who Want to Be, you are welcome to use as a resource for Mother’s and Father’s Day services with permission © Ashley-Anne Masters. God our perfect parent, we pray: For those who will send flowers to their mom and those who will put flowers on their mom’s grave For those who […]

Medicine & Meditation

Medicine & Meditation is a downloadable devotional guide written for healthcare employees which includes a brief meditation for each day of Holy Week. It has been used by hospital colleagues who requested it be made available to a wider audience. If you’d like a quick glance at what’s inside, here is Holy Monday’s devotion. Suggested donation […]