Seeking God in the “Land of Unlikeness”

by Melannie Svoboda SND on June 1, 2020

The poet W. H. Auden has written a beautiful poem called, “For the Time Being: Xmas Oratorio.” In it he suggests that we should seek God in three unusual places. One of those places is the Land of Unlikeness. He’s saying, I suggest, that we must seek God in people, places, and circumstances that are […]

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Stories about Death and Dying

by Melannie Svoboda SND on May 25, 2020

Last week I wrote about dying alone. This week I’ll share a few additional thoughts on death and dying, mostly in story form. I’m posting this on Memorial Day, the day we Americans remember in prayer and gratitude those men and women who died while serving our country in the U.S. military. As I did […]

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Does Anyone Die Alone?

by Melannie Svoboda SND on May 18, 2020

One of the heart-breaking consequences of the current pandemic is that many people cannot be with their loved ones at the time of their death. Those left behind often suffer great anguish because their loved ones died alone. Their stories raise a bigger question: Does anyone die alone? The obvious answer seems to be yes, […]

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Three Very Different Mothers Who Became Saints

by Melannie Svoboda SND on May 11, 2020

Today I wish all mothers a belated Happy Mother’s Day! In honor of mothers everywhere, I’d like to focus on three mothers who are saints in the Catholic Church: Saints Monica, Zelie Martin, and Dorothy Day. (Dorothy is not formally canonized yet, but the process has started.) St. Monica (331-387) St. Monica was born in […]

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Time for a Laughter Break

by Melannie Svoboda SND on May 4, 2020

Those of you familiar with my blog know that every now and then I like to devote a day to humor. Today is one of those days. So here are some jokes, funny sayings, and what-have-you’s that I hope will brighten your day! Let’s begin with some “punny” definitions. (Did I already hear a groan?) […]

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Where Do You Pray?

by Melannie Svoboda SND on April 27, 2020

In his book, Wrestling with God, Ronald Rolheiser says, “God has given us two churches:” Physical holy places/ holy buildings and the holy place within each of us. The first church consists of actual churches, cathedrals, temples, synagogues, mosques, shrines and such. The second church is where Jesus told the Samaritan woman at the well […]

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Quotes (and more!) for Earth Day 2020

by Melannie Svoboda SND on April 20, 2020

Wednesday April 22 we celebrate the 50th anniversary of Earth Day. The day began in the U.S. in 1970 as a response to the environmental crisis. On that day, 20 million Americans (10% of the population) took to the streets and college campuses in hundreds of cities to protest the country’s disregard for the planet. […]

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Celebrating Easter Seeds, 2020

by Melannie Svoboda SND on April 13, 2020

In his book, Taking Flight, Anthony de Mello tells this story. A woman goes into a store and finds God behind the counter. She asks, “What do you sell here?” God responds, “Everything your heart desires.” So she immediately asks for peace, love, freedom from fear, and happiness for all of humanity.” God smiles and […]

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History Can Encourage and Guide Us

by Melannie Svoboda SND on April 6, 2020

Whenever I get discouraged by news headlines and problems of all kinds, I not only pray more earnestly, I also grab a good history book. For I am a firm believer that history can both encourage and guide us. (My minor in college was History and Government.) Recently I saw an interview with historian Doris […]

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April: National Poetry Month

by Melannie Svoboda SND on March 30, 2020

April is National Poetry Month. I have selected three poems to celebrate this wonderful form of writing. All the poems have a Spring and Resurrection theme. I hope you enjoy them. The first poem is by one of our readers (and frequent responder) John Hopkins, a high-school English teacher who lives in Massachusetts. In this […]

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