“Overdue” by Valerie Schultz

by Melannie Svoboda SND on October 14, 2019

Valerie Schultz and her husband thought they had volunteered for their parish’s St. Vincent de Paul chapter. But through some fluke, their names were listed under the new detention ministry instead. The result of that fortunate mistake is her new book, Overdue: A Dewey Decimal System of Grace in which she shares some of her […]

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Praying the Rosary

by Melannie Svoboda SND on October 7, 2019

October 7 is the feast of the Holy Rosary… so I was thinking… As a little girl, I prayed the rosary kneeling beside my parent’s bed. It was usually May or October at 7:45 pm, and the rosary was being broadcast on the radio. We four kids, who moments earlier had been merrily playing outside […]

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Tapping into the Wisdom Within

by Melannie Svoboda SND on September 30, 2019

Today I invite you to tap into the wisdom you have within yourself, a wisdom you may not even know you have. Here’s how I came up with this little exercise. Recently I was reading about Nicholas Black Elk, a revered Native American. As some of you may know, he was a Catholic catechist whose […]

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Winning the Lottery

by Melannie Svoboda SND on September 16, 2019

Beth and Bob have been married for 54 years. Together they raised six sons. Now they have 19 grandchildren. After morning Mass the other day, Beth stopped me and said, “Sister, I have a story to share with you.” We sat down together in a pew where she took out a greeting card from her […]

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The Power of Handwritten Notes

by Melannie Svoboda SND on September 9, 2019

When Justin Smith was 30 years old a few years back, he lived only four blocks from his father in a small town in Eastern North Carolina. He saw his dad at least once a week. Yet several times a year he received a handwritten note from his father, Steve, as he had for most […]

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“Short Nights of the Shadow Catcher”

by Melannie Svoboda SND on September 2, 2019

If you are looking for a good book to read, I suggest this one as a possibility: Short Nights of the Shadow Catcher (2012) by Timothy Egan. The book, winner of the National Book Award, tells the amazing story of Edward Curtis, a renowned American portrait photographer who lived from 1868 to 1952. Curtis’ story […]

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Five Miscellaneous Items

by Melannie Svoboda SND on August 26, 2019

Here are five miscellaneous items I came across recently or a while ago. I hope you find them worth pondering. Item #1: Fortune 500 Companies A recent issue of National Geographic reports that almost half of Fortune 500 companies were founded by immigrants or their children. Here are the names of some of those companies […]

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Jesus Saves

by Melannie Svoboda SND on August 19, 2019

Every now and then, I see a church with a sign that says Jesus Saves. Usually the church is a Protestant Church. Often the church is small and the sign is big. The words Jesus Saves, I assume, summarize that church’s particular slant on the Christian faith. That slant is an important one. But the question arises, […]

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Making Commitments

by Melannie Svoboda SND on August 12, 2019

What can we say about making commitments? First, we can say that every commitment involves a “yes” and a “no.” Or, as the spiritual writer Evelyn Underhill wrote: “The road to a Yea lies through a Nay.” If I make a commitment to lose twenty pounds, for example, then I have to say “no” to […]

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Joy Harjo: The New U.S. Poet Laureate

by Melannie Svoboda SND on August 5, 2019

We have a new U.S. Poet Laureate. What is a Poet Laureate? The Library of Congress calls the position “the nation’s official poet.” Through various projects, the Poet Laureate tries “to raise the national consciousness to a greater appreciation of the reading and writing of poetry.” The new U.S. Poet Laureate is Joy Harjo, 68, […]

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