Tag Archives: innovative

Love Prayer with Scripture

Matterofprayer: A Year of Everyday Prayers – Thursday, January 24, 2019

bible still life, van gogh

Love Prayer with Scripture

I love praying in the Ignatian way. Some of the most meaningful and memorable times of prayer I have had in recent years have been while praying using St. Ignatius’ suggestions of imagery and guidance with Scripture.

However—I do not pray in this way often enough. Why is it that I do not? (This is not a rhetorical question. I really, honestly wonder.) Why don’t I pray regularly in a manner that has proven itself meaningful to my heart and spirit, again and again?

My regular prayer life has shifted, though. When I was a chaplain, for almost ten years, I found it easier to keep the rhythms of prayer—and more innovative prayer styles—in my life. Not that I have ever found it easy to pray, but as I reflect, I find it was easier. Or, more straightforward. Somehow, less complicated.

I am also reflecting on my calling as a local church pastor. In March, in less than two months, I will celebrate my fifth anniversary at that UCC church in the Chicago suburbs. I love what I am doing now! Yes, I loved my position as a hospital and care center chaplain, and I love being a small church pastor, too. Except—now that my responsibilities have shifted, I seem to not have as much of the focus on my personal times of prayer.

One thing that does help me in my corporate prayer life is my (semi) regular attendance at Morning Prayer online. I am privileged to meet with an Episcopal website and ministry called www.dailyoffice.org for prayer several mornings a week. (I know I’ve spoken about them before on this blog.) Vicar Josh and the other friends at the Daily Office Network are a wonderful, supportive group of people. God bless them!

But, that still does not explain why I do not pray regularly in the Ignatian way. Perhaps that is why I have picked up this slim volume and am reading and blogging my way through it. Dear Lord, help me to be more regular in my personal prayer times with You. Help me to use this marvelous manner of praying that St. Ignatius advocated—regularly. I know You want me to be in regular contact with You. Help me—help all of us—come before You as trusting children, in prayer. In Jesus’ blessed name we pray, amen.



Like what you read? Disagree? Share your thoughts with your loved ones and continue the conversation.

Why not visit my companion blogs, “the best of” A Year of Being Kind.  #PursuePEACE. My Facebook page, Pursuing Peace – Thanks! And, read my sermons from Pastor, Preacher Pray-er



Peace: The Peace Vigil and School Children

Matterofprayer: A Year of Everyday Prayers – Sunday, June 5, 2016

Definitions from Gemini Jr. High School

Peace: The Peace Vigil and School Children

I remember the Morton Grove Community Peace Vigil last Wednesday with great appreciation. Yes, the Peace Vigil accomplished its purpose wonderfully. It was a simple event. Some of the diverse people in our community had a chance to get together, think about peace and harmony, and seek to continue the conversation of peace. And, we did it! It happened.

In particular, I remembered the great opportunity I had to talk with young people at Gemini Jr. High School in Niles. And, the welcome and courtesy I received from Principal Rich Groeling and all his staff and faculty members. (Thanks so much, again!)

Since I had a number of different personal definitions of PEACE from Gemini School, I made a simple poster where I displayed a bunch of these personal points of view. An informal display stood near the entrance to the Peace Vigil, and a large number of people slowed down, looked at the various definitions, and discussed the points of view.

Wonderful chance to have the participants at the Vigil discuss PEACE. And young people have such great ideas! Innovative, too. Excellent job, all the way around.

Morton Grove and its surrounding communities are indeed quite diverse. Culturally, ethnically, in terms of religion, and in several other ways. Great opportunity to embody the melting pot that is the United States.

Why not have positive interaction? Hope and harmony, instead of divisiveness, alienation, anxiety and fear? That is my sincere hope and prayer. God willing.


Like what you read? Disagree? Share your thoughts with your loved ones and continue the conversation.

Why not visit my sister blogs, “the best of” A Year of Being Kind.   @chaplaineliza  And, read my sermons from Pastor, Preacher Pray-er

A Caring Acrostic on PEACE

Matterofprayer: A Year of Everyday Prayers – Friday, March 18, 2016


A Caring Acrostic on PEACE

Today is another day posting from St. Viator’s High School in Arlington Heights. Another day of my Pursuing PEACE Project (#PursuePEACE). Their principal, Fr. Corey Brost, offered me the opportunity to hang out in the lunch room last week. I talked briefly with anyone who came up to the table I had set up on one side of the large room.

Two more young people today, and two more personal definitions. I was so intrigued by both definitions! But more about that, in a moment.

First, Julia’s definition: “PEACE is not just being kind to one another because you have to, but because you want to.”


I asked Julia to tell me a little more about her definition. “Peace is an internal thing,” she responded. “You can’t be kind to people begrudgingly, but you need to WANT to be kind. On the inside.”

I was so moved by this. Julia had articulated something deeply significant. Peace starts off on the inside—internally, long before it is ever experienced by others on the outside. I thanked her very much for her profound insight.

Second, Maranda’s personal definition—an acrostic on PEACE! “P-eople E-verywhere A-re C-aring for E-veryone.

I thought this was awesome. And, innovative and imaginative. Maranda obviously had given her definition a great deal of thought. I would have loved to talk with her further! However, she needed to go—regretfully, but her homework was calling. (She needed to finish an assignment.) I thanked her so much, encouraged her with her homework assignment, and sent her off with one of my signature smiles.

I absolutely loved both definitions. Caring. Kindness. The internal kind/caring/loving thoughts processed mentally and psychologically, as well as spiritually discerned. Then, displayed through kind/caring/loving words, thoughts and actions. That is PEACE in action for both of these young people. Thanks to God for such awesomeness!


Like what you read? Disagree? Share your thoughts with your loved ones and continue the conversation.

Why not visit my sister blogs, “the best of” A Year of Being Kind.   @chaplaineliza And, read my sermons from Pastor, Preacher Pray-er