Ann vs. the Volcano


Yup – this is me standing on top of the Hawaiian volcano Haleakala in January trying to prove the point that I would go to the far reaches of the planet to get a conversation jumpstarted among ministers on the topic of truth and how we might talk about it with those we serve.  At the time, I also had plans to go this year to South Africa… and the Philippines… and… well, you can imagine what comes next in this story.  Like everyone else this year, I’ve been grounded.

I mean that in every sense of the word.  There is a part of me that feels like a teenager who has been (unfairly!) sent to her room and denied a whole lot of fun.  There is a part of me that misses airports (who would have ever guessed I’d be saying that?) and is less keen on long slow journeys by car.  But there is also a part of me that is immensely grateful to be reconnected for long stretches of time with family and for the opportunity to slow down and attend to those things that matter most.  Being “grounded” has also been “grounding.”

So, yes, everything has changed, but also much for me has remained the same: I continue to get clearer about what I am about.  I know that I still want to be helping my sisters and brothers in the field of ministry have what they need to be doing the work they are called to do at this moment in time.  That means finding God in even the stressful tasks of administration.  Finding God in the hard conversations.  Finding God in the craziness of time.  And right now, finding God in our incredibly contentious political environment.  

I’m loving doing Zoom mini-workshops with Catholic school teachers, preachers, parishioners around a spirituality of truth for our time.  Even as Hawaiian volcanos are “out” for the time being, I’m loving getting to be with amazing people from San Francisco, New York, Halifax, and New Orleans… sometimes all on the same call.  The work goes on.  And this newsletter is meant to be a part of that.  I’m excited to get to touch base with you every couple of weeks to share stuff that I’m finding helpful, stuff that I’m working on, stuff that might be of interest with people who share similar interests.

Toward that end…

Here is the newest resource I’ve been working on: a set of 10 lesson plans (with accompanying slides) for high school teachers who want to educate around the topic of truth in this challenging election season.

Here is an outstanding summary of a well-nuanced, super-clarifying talk given by Bishop McElroy of San Diego about voting as Catholics. Something totally worth sharing with those you serve.

And here is my “shout out” of the week: Thanks to Fr. Terry Watanabe and Candielyla Pinaula and the amazing parish staff of St. Theresa’s in Kihei, HI who made it possible for me to start this year on the top of a volcano.  Whenever I start to get a bit down, I remember your hospitality and the remarkable work you are doing at your parish and I get another jolt of hope.

“See” you soon –