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 […]

My father’s pajamas

My father’s pajamas

—by Karen G. Bockelman My favorite photo of my father was taken more than 20 years ago. There he is, staring straight at the camera, his nearly bald head rising above a fringe of faintly visible hair. His round, German face beams. His eyes sparkle behind gold-rimmed glasses. It is not a professional photograph, taken […]

God knows what we need

God knows what we need

—by Elizabeth Hunter The questions and demands for quantification from my youngest son can be so numerous they overlap and tangle. His persistence can tire me out, yet I appre­ciate it. I’m grateful for opportunities to communi­cate everything from the fact that jumping off of the garage roof is not a good idea, to the […]

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 […]