In March I had the awesome opportunity to work with the 10th grade class of San Diego’s Waldorf School, and I helped facilitate their SEEDS program. We worked on several garden projects, including planting fruit trees on a hillside (by the cob chicken coop) to help prevent soil erosion. Shortly after the class planted them, they started to bloom!
I remember a conversation I had with my coworker Lia while we were observing their buds. She told me she was sad to prune them because they were so pretty, but that we had to do it because they were putting all their energy into flowering and not rooting. In order for them to have a long life they need to secure their roots in the ground early on, and then they can direct their energy on blooming. That resonated with me.
As a camper at Camp Stevens I was eager to show others I was blooming. During team building activities, my eagerness to lead often prevented me from listening to others – I was focusing my energy on showing others that I knew what to do. Some of the most important lessons I’ve learned came from times when camp counselors challenged my adventure groups to focus our energy on listening to everyone’s ideas and sharing leadership. Communication was our roots.
Camp Stevens continues to show me that tending and pruning can sometimes feel challenging, but it can result in something beautiful and sustainable.
Shortly after the resurrection, Jesus was walking down a long road when he ran into two strangers. These strangers did not recognize Jesus. How could they? Jesus had died, been buried, and, just hours earlier, risen from the dead. The stunning story of Christ’s death had spread, and these two travelers did not yet believe […]
For five days in late May of this year, I had the privilege of gathering with other seminarians at the annual Preaching in Excellence conference hosted by the Episcopal Preaching Foundation (EPF). For 35 years, the EPF has been educating Episcopal seminarians and clergy on the benefits of great preaching. Four of my fellow Sewanee […]
One of the interesting aspects of working in a diocesan office is an awareness of the trends across congregations in various locales. Of course, each congregation is unique in many ways, but we are each part of the same tradition, in the same diocese. Because of that, trends become quickly apparent. One of those emerges […]