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Mothers Day: She’s giggling in a Heavenly Somewhere

I miss my mom, and out in a Heavenly Somewhere she’s giggling because I’ve circled back to faith.  It’s been years on the threshing floor separating the chaff from grain. Years ago, my parents Esteban and Josepha emigrated to the U.S. from the Philippines and Americanized themselves as Steve and Josie.  My mom practiced her […]

April celebrates Columnists Day: separating the good from the bad and the ugly

Being a columnist is all about relationships. April 18 celebrates Columnists Day, and its patron saint is Ernie Pyle, the famous World War II reporter whose front line stories made vivid and vulnerable the sacrifices of service men and women.  At its heart, memorable opinion writing humanizes events and struggles. Whether a writer is liberal, […]

Visit Prisoners (but isn’t it easier just to collect food and clothing?)

(Webster Correctional Institution in Cheshire, CT where I volunteered.) Visiting prisoners is encouraged in the Bible, along with feeding the hungry and clothing the poor. Yet for many, it’s less scary to collect food and clothes. Comforting prisoners is listed last in Matthew 25:35-36 when Jesus said, “For I was hungry and you gave me […]

Hawk crash and other winter wildlife: spiritual messages

(Photo by Suzette Standring.  Hawk with a concussion right after its crash) Watching wildlife is a year-round Christmas gift as they scamper, trot, glide, and even slither freely nearby.  Our fenced-in back yard abuts an open field where coyotes, turkeys and deer are common.  Occasionally, the wild jolts the urban, as when a magnificent hawk […]

Meditation and Creating Textiles Artwork

(Photo by The Milton Art Center: “Snowy Owl,” a quilted wall hanging, by artist Line Corcoran of Milton) Deep fall invites cozy stillness, and an appreciation of fabrics. Quilts and other textiles soften the darkness. Baskets hearken back to close-to-the-earth times. Creating them is a meditation. Too often, their functional use, for example, what we […]