Two Mothers-in-Law in Scripture

by Melannie Svoboda SND on June 29, 2015

Being a nun, I’ve never had a mother-in-law. So I’ve never experienced firsthand the joys and challenges of such a relationship. But I have heard many mother-in-law jokes. And I have read about two mothers-in-law in scripture. In the jokes, the mother-in-law often fares badly. But in the two examples in the Bible, the mothers-in-law […]

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The Gift of Flowers

by Melannie Svoboda SND on June 22, 2015

At this time of the year, our convent yard here in Chardon is graced with many flowers. In spring we said, “Hello again!” to our purple lilacs and white lilies-of-the-valley. Then we welcomed our azeleas, roses, and wachmacallits. (I use that term affectionately for flowers I cannot name.) Right now as I write this the […]

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Wendell Berry: Writer, Environmentalist, Farmer

by Melannie Svoboda SND on June 15, 2015

Recently a participant at one of my presentations gave me the book, A Timbered Choir, by Wendell Berry. The book, a collection of some of his poetry, reawakened my interest in this prolific American writer.

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The Poetry of Trees

by Melannie Svoboda SND on June 8, 2015

The poet Joyce Kilmer wrote: “I think that I shall never see/ A poem lovely as a tree.” Let’s take a few moments today to reflect on the wonder, beauty, and poetry of trees.

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My Quotation Collection

by Melannie Svoboda SND on June 1, 2015

When I was in high school, I began collecting quotations: A line from a poem, a proverb I chanced upon, something I read in a book. I dutifully copied them into a small notebook and took joy in reading them from time to time.

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Remembering the Nazi Concentration Camps

by Melannie Svoboda SND on May 25, 2015

This year marks the 70th anniversary of the liberation of the Nazi concentration camps by American and Soviet forces. It is a fitting time to reflect on this horrific chapter in our human history. Why dwell on something so gruesome? One reason is this: So that the phrase “never again” may become part of our […]

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The Story of Pentecost: Three Aspects to Ponder

by Melannie Svoboda SND on May 18, 2015

Next Sunday is the feast of Pentecost. When I read the story of the first Pentecost in Acts 2, several aspects of the story strike me. Here are three of them.

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Pope Francis’ Encyclical on Joy

by Melannie Svoboda SND on May 11, 2015

Pope Francis’ first encyclical was published in 2013. It was entitled The Joy of the Gospel or Evangelii Guadium in Latin. I’d like to share a few thoughts with you from this papal letter.

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Five Myths about Worry

by Melannie Svoboda SND on May 4, 2015

What are you worried about? Notice, my question assumes you are worried about something. Maybe it’s something big and important. Or maybe it’s something small and insignificant. Maybe you worry a lot. Or perhaps you worry hardly at all, yet you still have this uneasy feeling about something…

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Happy 25th Birthday, Hubble Telescope!

by Melannie Svoboda SND on April 27, 2015

On April 24, 1990 the Hubble Telescope was launched into orbit by NASA aboard the space shuttle Discovery. Named after Edwin Hubble (a renowned American astronomer), this amazing telescope has transformed what we know about outer space. Since it began orbiting the earth, it has continuously sent back pictures of our universe that can only […]

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