Blessed are those

Blessed are those

—by Denise Rector In keeping with my half-hearted resolution to be healthier, I was on my way to get something good for me—smoothie mix. I came around the corner, and it was right in the middle of the aisle: a curved leath­er sectional, situated perfectly in front of a gigantic TV and stand. For the […]

After the storm

After the storm

—by Cindy Novak Kim Rathjen’s mountain-high experience usually takes place on the last day of Camp Noah when children and volunteers come together to celebrate and praise God during the closing ceremony. “To see the kids singing their hearts out brings tears to my eyes every time ” says Rathjen coordinator of inreach and outreach […]

Listening to God’s beloved daughters

Listening to God’s beloved daughters

—by Christa von Zychlin Who’s ever heard of the strong, strangely-named Zelophehad sisters: Mahlah, Noa, Hoglah, Milcah and Tirzah (see Numbers 27:1-8)? Who could possibly wring laughter and empowerment from Tamar’s story (2 Samuel 13:1-22), along with deep, visceral anger? Who would dare declare that God sometimes speaks in a woman’s voice—smack in the middle […]

My tenants, my teachers

My tenants, my teachers

—Anne E. Basye “God comes to you disguised as your life,” says a scrap of paper on my office wall—a quote from the writer Paula D’Arcy. In my life, God can show up as a tenant. Behind my home is a room and half bath that I rent to others, a lovely, light-filled space with […]

I don’t like fences

I don’t like fences

—Adrainne Gray I don’t like gates, enclosures, pens, fences, walls. I never have. It’s part of the reason I felt more suited to the call of deacon or the office of Word and Service, positions that call one to go outside the walls of the church, mostly. The feeling of being restricted bothers me. It […]

Prodigal Singing

Prodigal Singing

—by Betty E. Landis As we rounded the curve of the con­course, a child’s cries ricocheted off the tiled bathroom walls, into the carpeted gate area. It was ear­ly morning, and the howling was getting louder. Women and chil­dren spilled out of the bathroom with expressions of determination more pronounced than the typical I-must-get-to-my-gate look. […]

Age and experience

Age and experience

 —by Sarah Carson Well dear readers, it’s May again which means it’s time for Gather’s annual intergenerational issue. One year ago I wrote to you in this column about family—about whether I’d ever have one of my own and what I’d learned about it from the many generations of women in my life. Of course […]

By the skin of our teeth

By the skin of our teeth

by Elizabeth Hunter— Three weeks before my dental appointment, I started trying to do the right thing. I flossed my teeth twice daily. Someone had suggested this dental boot camp strategy several years ago, so I tried it. Before having kids, I was a daily flosser, righteous and cavity-free. Two kids and three fillings later, […]

Famine forgetters

Famine forgetters

by Anne Basye— When you were planning your Easter menu, did you consider the pos­sibility that the meat, vegetables and staples you needed might not be available? That store shelves might be emptied by crop failure, drought, guerilla fighting or a natural disaster? I didn’t either. Prices rise and fall, a Florida freeze might damage […]

Reading the Bible for love

Reading the Bible for love

by Laurie A. Jungling— Reading the Bible is a big deal. Whether we’re reading it alone or in commu­nity, whether we’re hearing it in worship, engaging in group Bible study or doing personal daily devotions, reading the Bible is im­portant for our relationships with God, neighbors and ourselves. The Bible is the primary way God’s […]