A poet , teacher and spiritual director currently based at two theological seminaries, I value the contemplative and "prophetic" dimensions of life. , I use this blog to post thoughts on poetry, spirituality, theology and connections between a thoughtful, prayerful and committed Christian faith and daily living in this challenging world.
I work as a teacher, poet and spiritual director at a number of institutions in the DC area. My teaching focuses in various ways on writing, poetry, Spirituality and Christian vocation and ministry - especially from the point of view of the laity. I also offer classes and retreats encouraging people to explore their inner lives, engage their creativity and reflect on their beliefs about God, vocation, and how we can discern and pursue new ways to transform our broken world. I enjoy speaking of faith in the secular academy as well as reminding those preparing for ministry in the Church that our primary purpose is to love and serve the world beyond the church's doors. I love helping people to grow in faith and to find their own voices, and I also love encouraging them to use their minds. I see no contradiction between these impulses, believing as I do that faith, reason and creativity work together.
the third day there was a marriage at Cana in Galilee, and the mother of Jesus
was there; Jesus also was invited to the marriage, with the disciples.When the wine failed, the mother of Jesus said
to him, "They have no wine."And Jesus said to her, "O woman, what have you to do with me?My hour has not yet come."His mother said to the servants, "Do
whatever he tells you." Now six stone jars were standing there, for the
Jewish rites of purification, each holding twenty or thirty gallons.Jesus said to them, "Fill the jars with
water."And they filled them up to
the brim.He said to them, "Now
draw some out, and take it to the steward of the feast."So they took it.When the steward of the feast tasted the
water now become wine, and did not know where it came from (though the servants
who had drawn the water knew), the steward of the feast called the bridegroom
and said, "Every man serves the good wine first; but you have kept the good
wine until now." This, the first of his signs, Jesus did at Cana in
Galilee, and manifested his glory; and his disciples believed in him."
John 2: 1-11
from Kathleen Henderson Staudt, Annunciations: Poems out of Scripture (2003; reissued 2018: Wipf & Stock)
Servants at Cana
servants know what happened.
the ones who saw the wine run out
We knew it
the ones with aching backs
to draw water
out of wine.
feel the strain in the air
out of wine
the important ones left.
afraid of being thought stingy
threatening to break up.
the woman was so urgent
told her son
us to do
he told us to.
as we hauled the water,
this silly command,
his hands on the jars,
smile at us
As if he
were bringing a surprise
As if we
were not servants, but invited guests
At a party of our own.
the wine steward discovers
wine, where only now
what had happened,tasted and saw
bridegroom poured it out, the festivities began