Happy Birthday, Rosa Parks

Today, February 4, is the birthday of Rosa Parks. I used to have a very romantic idea that she was just a poor, tired woman whose weary legs led to a major civil rights victory. But that version of the story does not give Parks enough credit. The truth is that Parks knew exactly what…

Honoring Martin Luther King, Jr.

There are so many good words in the air today. Good words from the inauguration. Good words from Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. I hesitate to add many more words to the mix. I’d rather enjoy the words of others today. I’ve shared a brief reflection on King’s “Letter from a Birmingham Jail” over…

Remembering Romero

On March 24, 1980, Salvadoran Catholic priest Oscar Romero was shot and killed while celebrating mass.  Following Jesus had led Romero to speak out against the abuses of the Salvadoran elite and to work for the rights of the people of El Salvador.  These prophetic words and actions led many powerful people to perceive him…

Getting to 40

Sunday was my parents’ 40th anniversary. We had a small family party for them on Saturday, and my brother and I both wrote on our cards: “Thank you for setting such a good example of marriage for me.” I know it sounds a little cheesy, but we both mean it deeply. I consider myself to…

Remembering a Saint

On All Saints Day yesterday, I was particularly thinking of my father-in-law, Dennis Ellett. He died at the terribly young age of 61 on April 28, 2007. His heart just stopped. He never finished building the partially-constructed airplane in his garage. He never carried out his plans to smuggle Bibles into China. He never met…

Old Married Folks

I am grateful tonight for a lovely time spent with my relatives David and Dawn. (David is my grandpa’s first cousin. So that makes him my . . . ) I last saw them about thirteen years ago when my husband and I visited New York City and stayed with them in New Jersey. I…