Please Come Back

by Rose Mary Dougherty A wooden heart hangs on my office door; one side says, “Welcome,” the other, “Please come back.” Sometimes I forget to turn the sign and to leave the door open after my appointment has gone. Other times I choose to close the door and leave the sign turned, because I’m not […]

Proximity and Hope

by Mary Van Balen A movie or book can be transforming. For Black History Month, I’m sharing an experience with both. In January, I attended a movie with friends: Just Mercy. Based on the book Just Mercy: A Story of Justice and Redemption, written by Bryan Stevenson and published in 2014, the movie centers around […]

Center Down: Prayer in the Struggle for Justice

Today’s blog is by Jessie Smith “How good it is to center down! To sit quietly and see one’s self pass by!” — “How Good To Center Down,” Howard Thurman Spiritual nurture: essential and pragmatic Walking the three or four blocks to Capitol Hill from Union Station week after week takes its toll. For the […]

Finding Hope

Today’s blog is by Mary van Balen People long for hope, for peace, for cooperation. While some are bent on stirring up distrust, and spreading fear based on dividing the world into “us” and “them,” most of humankind is looking for a better way in 2020. Many I talked with over the holidays desire an […]

Evening with the Senator

Today’s blog post is by Patience Robbins I recently had the wonderful opportunity to spend an evening with Senator Tim Kaine (VA) at the Shalem office. It was a time of deep inspiration and sharing of light and hope. Because of a personal friendship with a member of the Shalem Board, Senator Kaine joined 25 […]

Snowdrops

Today’s blog is by Bill Dietrich Recently someone who knows I enjoy gardening asked what I did during winter when there was “nothing to do in the garden.” I found myself reacting impulsively with a “to do” list of garden tasks: pruning, raking, protecting tender plants, building retaining walls, tidying up the compost pile, and, […]

What Holding A Newborn Can Teach Us About God’s Amazing Love

Today’s blog is by Tom Adams Sometimes I find it very difficult to appreciate and accept how much God loves me and you. The world seems kind of gloomy; my own and others’ imperfections seem to shout at me. Other times I get a glimpse of the tenderness and sweetness of God’s love and am […]

Advent Listening

Today’s blog is by Mary van Balen I am poring through Scripture readings and books while preparing for an Advent retreat, revisiting favorite writings and discovering new ones. As readers do, I filter the words through my current state of mind, faith, and being. A passage that held deep meaning five years ago provides little […]

To Have Eyes to See as the Saints See!

An Evening in Assisi In the spring of 2016, I spent ten days in Assisi and its surrounding region on a Shalem pilgrimage to visit the sacred sites of the lives of St. Francis and St. Clare. I went without knowing much about either saint or Assisi, but trusting that whatever the trip offered would […]

Sports as Contemplative Practice

Today’s blog is by Tilden Edwards, the founder of Shalem Institute. Given the Washington Nationals recent World Series win, we were inspired to remember Tilden Edwards’ article on sports as a contemplative practice, written several years ago.  We are thrilled for our hometown team, albeit exhausted from a wild season, and sincerely thank the Astros […]