Tuesday, October 31, 2017


Just like you had to make room in your mouth for some big girl teeth,
Now you have to make room in your heart for another little sister.
But by the look in your eyes in the above, I think your heart expanded quickly, letting Lucy into the sister club.


Saturday, July 1, 2017

Witnessing Ourselves

Getting Into and Out of Your Own Head 

To a disciple who complained of his limitations the Master said: 
“You are limited indeed. But have you noticed you can do things today that you would have thought impossible fifteen years ago? 

The master continued: “What changed?” 
The disciple replied: “My Talents changed.” 
The master paused for a moment and then said: 
“No. You changed.” 

And the disciple quickly replied: 
“Isn’t that the same thing?” 
And the Mastered replied:
You are what you think you are. 

When your thinking changed, you changed.

From Anthony De Mello’s One Minute Wisdom 

 Our minds control us so much more than we know until we learn to pay attention to our thinking. Until we develop the skill of watching the mind. Part of Papa's reason for taking time every morning to be quiet and still is to develop the skill of being able to observe my mind during the day as I am working, playing or whatever. It is a way to stay in touch with the truth about who we really are and not be tossed and turned, completely unaware, by our thoughts. The story suggest we can change our thinking but that too can be difficult until we become aware of our thoughts. 
 That awareness is the gateway to our thoughts. 
Yeah, I know this sounds a little confusing. 
Think about it.
Then go somewhere. Sit down. Be still. And watch your mind. It's amazing.


Thursday, June 1, 2017



You are six years old. Hopefully by the time your are sixty you will have some sense of what Thomas Merton is talking about in the below quote.
I'm sixty-seven as I am writing this and have only an inkling of understanding at this point in my life.



“At the center of our being is a point of nothingness which is 

untouched by sin and by illusion, a point of pure truth, a point 

or spark which belongs entirely to God, which is never at our 

disposal, from which God disposes of our lives, which is 

inaccessible to the fantasies of our own mind or the brutalities 

of our own will. This little point of nothingness and of absolute 

poverty is the pure glory of God in us. It is so to speak His 

name written in us, as our poverty, as our indigence, as our 

dependence, as our sonship. It is like a pure diamond, blazing 

with the invisible light of heaven. It is in everybody, and if we 

could see it we would see these billions of points of light 

coming together in the face and blaze of a sun that would make 

all the darkness and cruelty of life vanish completely ... I have 

no program for this seeing. It is only given. But the gate of 

heaven is every- where.”

Tuesday, February 28, 2017


Here you are at your sister's four year old birthday party with your cousin Caroline.
I pray that someday you and Caroline can look back on this picture and be thankful for the relationship you have had with each other over the years.

It's all about love and relationships Alice.
But I have told you that before.
I pray life teach you that in the most tender way.


Sunday, January 8, 2017


But first and foremost, I learned from Whitman that the poem is a temple— or a green field— a place to enter, and in which to feel. Only in a secondary way is it an intellectual thing— an artifact, a moment of seemly and robust wordiness— wonderful as that part of it is. I learned that the poem was made not just to exist, but to speak— to be company. It was everything that was needed, when everything was needed. I remember the delicate, rumpled way into the woods, and the weight of the books in my pack. I remember the rambling, and the loafing— the wonderful days when, with Whitman, I tucked my trowser-ends in my boots and went and had a good time.

Oliver, Mary (2016-10-11). Upstream: Selected Essays . 

These are words from one of my favorite poets. She will be dead when you can finally read her and attempt to understand her words.
But understanding is not always what poetry is about, as she alludes to in the above. "...a place to enter...", that's what a poem can be.
I pray you take time to enter that place. I think it's even possible for that place to change your life.

Poetry Alice. 
Give it a try.


Sunday, November 27, 2016


Here we all are ladies.
My gift to you all this thanksgiving 2016 was to teach all of you one of Papa's holy words.


You probably won't remember this but, on this day we visited the Elf Village up in the North Carolina mountains. Above is a picture of us in one of Santa's Sleighs he loaned out for the occasion.
This little elf village also had a very small chapel with just enough room for all of us to enter.
We all entered that chapel and participated in a moment of being silent together, practicing one of Papa's holy words together.

That was your Thanksgiving gift to me.

Thank you for that!

St. John of the Cross writes:

Carve out a day every week,
or an hour a day,
or a moment each hour, 
and abide in loving silence with the Friend.
Feel the frenetic concerns of life in the world
fall away,
like the last leaves of autumn being lifted from the tree in the arms of zephyr.
Be the bare tree.


Sunday, November 20, 2016


This is your post for October, done in November.
I hope to post a post-Thanksgiving post to all of you later.

This is a piece from a book by a Celtic Theologian, Phillip Newell.

Julian of Norwich, the fourteenth-century Christian mystic, said most simply but most radically that we are not just made by God, we are made of God. We are not just fashioned from afar by a distant Creator. We are born from the very womb of the Divine. This is why Julian so loves to refer to God as Mother as well as Father. She sees us as coming forth from the essence of the One who is the source of all things.
What does it mean that we are made of God rather than simply by God? In part it means that the wisdom of God is deep within us, deeper than the ignorance of what we have done. It is to say that the creativity of God is deep within us, deeper than any barrenness in our lives or relationships, deeper than any endings in our families or our world. Within us-as a sheer gift of God-is the capacity to bring forth what has never been before, including what has never been imagined before. Above all else, as Julian says, the love-longings of God are at the heart of our being. We and all things have come forth from the One. Deep within us are holy, natural longings for oneness, primal sacred drives for union. We may live in tragic exile from these longings or we may have spent a whole lifetime not knowing how to truly satisfy them, but they are there at the heart of our being, waiting to be born afresh.

I pray you sense that longing and give birth to that mystery in your life Alice. I can already see it in this photo of you.