Sisters in Scripture
 
 
Life is Like a Ham...
10/21/2020  Kathleen MacInnis Kichline

"Life is like slicing through a ham. The fat and the lean just lie alongside one another." I'm not sure who said it--though I suspect a Southern writer.

Have you not found it to be so? I do believe we are more aware of those times when sweet, juicy, succulent ham gives way to the flab of fat. You know, you're riding high on the crest of a wave, then suddenly you're tumbling in the trough. But the reverse is also true--that lean pink meat reveals itself on just the other side of a streak of fat. I can tell there is not a day so dark or damp that a call from one of my grandkids doesn't cause my world to shine.

Sweet, sorrowful, challenging, playful, lonely, sad, jubilant, tired, peaceful, anxious, confident - the grab bag of feelings that life contains can be pretty random at times. As we slice through the ham of life, we do not even or always have the luxury of transition. Fat and lean each quickly follow upon the other without asking our prediction or permission. It's a good thing to be mindful of in the mid-slice of the moment that we occupy.

Certainly this is true in the succession of days we call life, even as it is true in a 24-hour cycle. But it is also true beyond our personal experience. As we look to our neighbors and the world around us, that same slice of time, that same common circumstance, can reveal very different outcomes.

These Covid days have brought both loss and unexpected blessing, but at any given time, different ones of us are experiencing just the one, not the other. I have never seen so many families out bicycling with their children as I have this year. I smile as they wheel by and wonder how these children will one day remember the year their parents worked from home. But I also know there are children stuck in homes that are chaotic, even abusive and they have no place to go. I wonder how they will one day remember the year their parents worked from home? 
 
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What is Sisters in Scripture? 
Sisters in Scripture began as a bible study for women and while it still is that today, the ministry has grown into much more.  Bible Studies were followed by workshops and presentations which evolved into a full line of retreat offerings—some as short as a partial day, others over several days, on a rich variety of topics. 
 
Recently, online retreats have been added to in-person retreats
 
Spiritual Direction with Kathleen is also available via phone/Skype or in person at either of two locations: Lynnwood, WA (occasionally) and Bella Vista, AR (regularly).

Bible Studies

Sisters in Scripture offers a variety of studies available for purchase from this site.  Each study seeks to prayerfully engage the scriptures to arrive at meaning for today and in our everyday lives.  To do so, we enter the story through the lens of various biblical characters using both biblical scholarship and our own creative imagination. 
 
Each chapter includes Background, Prayer, Reflection Questions, and a Closer Look at the Text.  To see the full line of studies, go to  the Bible Studies page or the Purchase Books page on this site.

 Spiritual Direction

A more apt name might be "spiritual companioning.”  I often think of the disciples on the Road to Emmaus when doing Spiritual Direction.  On life's road, Christ draws alongside, unseen but ever present, though we are often only partially aware.  Spiritual Direction is intentional attentiveness to that Presence in the company of an other who walks that same journey.  To read more about this gentle disciple, go to the Spiritual Direction page on this website.
 

MEANWHILE, ON ZOOM...
The fall series, Grandparents of Jesus, continues its look at the four women in Matthew's genealogy. The ideas, discussions, and presentations have been provocative and fascinating.
 
Hop on board if you care to join us.
 
Next one up: Ruth and Boaz, you choice of Saturday Oct 24th or Monday Oct 26th, both are at 9:30-11:30 Pacific Time. To register, go to: The Priory.

 
Here's a sampling of comments about various Zooms of late:

Thank you so much for the Saturday session. It was informative and also fun! I liked the way you involved all of us. I am always impressed by your knowledge and the obvious love you have for teaching. - LF, Arkansas

I really appreciate your gentle welcoming presence. I benefit not just from the content of your sessions, but from the gems you drop along the way. - MW, Washington

I think the audience participation was the best I have seen. I also think that your detailed knowledge of the multiple subjects was truly impressive. – KB, Connecticut
 
 
I feel it is such a privilege to read the materials and then hear your lectures and to be with such equally interested and interesting women. What a great experience it has been for me. Thanks for being the wonderful scholar and teacher you are. – PH, Minnesota

This is one of the best things that I have done for myself in months. I thoroughly enjoyed the time. It was well spent. I was very satisfied with the content and would be very interested in more courses like this. - KW, Washington 


Retreats and Presentation

As with the interactive focus in my studies, the retreats are also designed to help participants enter into and experience the theme through a variety of modalities: prayer, silence, presentation, discussion, music, art, poetry, etc. 
 
In addition to leading retreats, for the past four years, I have been co-teaching a course on Spiritual Retreats in the School of Theology and Ministry at Seattle University, a sacred task that allows retreat ministry to expand through the future ministries of those I teach.
 
To View Photos of the latest Retreat, Once Upon a Time in a Town Called Nazareth click on the link.  
 
A comment from Julie Joslund, Pastor of Edmonds Lutheran Church:
Kathleen and Betsey’s Advent Retreat Once Upon a Time in a Town Called Nazareth is fabulous! The story and the inspiration of young Mary becoming the mother of our Lord - with all the incumbent questions, joys and fears - comes to life with the images, colors, words, songs and dances from long ago Nazareth…. right up to today. Participants are involved and included in the retreat experience. It is hands on and fulfilling. Everyone goes away with a full heart, ready to engage the season of Advent and the coming once again of Christ into our days. 

Available Retreats

A partial list of retreat offerings would include:
  • Once Upon a Time in a Town Called Nazareth,
  • The Women Who Follow Jesus
  • The First Supper
  • Witnesses on the Way: an Interactive Stations of the Cross
  • Encounters with the Risen Lord
  • God’s Gift of Abundant Time
  • Grandmother God: Loving as God Loves
  • An Evening with Esther, and
  • Wisdom from Tobit

 
 

    
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