Archive - Dec 2009 - Oct 2016

Wednesday, 30 August 2017

Colleagues ListII, September 3rd, 2017

Vol. XIII No. 12


Wayne A. Holst, Editor
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Dear Friends:

Here in Calgary, where I live, there is a bite in the air - a sure sign that autumn is approaching. The sun sets further south than it did two months ago and there are more yellow leaves on the ground.

For many, September means a return to work routines, and that applies to me. I am indeed grateful that, at my age, I have some work routines to return to! For me, to labour is a blessing, not a burden.

This issue of Colleagues List is similar in form to most of the others - except the content keeps changing.

My Special Item is a book notice for the latest in the Orbis Spiritual Masters Series. It focuses on the life and work of a Catholic sister who may not be well known to many of us - so it is important we get acquainted. Welcome, Joyce Rupp.

May you enjoy this volume and the other intriguing material I have collected for you this past week.



Book Notice -
JOYCE RUFF - Essential Writings
Selected with an Introduction -
by Michael Leach
Modern Spiritual Masters Series
Orbis Books, Maryknoll,  NY
2017, 183 pages. $22. US. $25.78 CAD
Kindle Edition $14.08 CAD
ISBN #978-1-62698-233-8
Publisher's Promo:

Joyce Rupp is an Iowa farmer's daughter, a sister to seven, a Sister to many. She is a planter, grower, and spiritual midwife. She is a writer, speaker, and retreat giver who receives invitations from five continents. Her books have been published in seven languages, including Croatian and Indonesian. She sings both chant and golden oldies, teaches theology and practices transpersonal psychology, is a lifelong Catholic appreciated by people of all faiths and criticized by some in her own  faith as "out there."
Drawing on key themes from her many influential books, Joyce Rupp: Essential Writings shows you where Joyce is at, where she came from and where she is going, who she is, what she is like, and what she knows for sure, all in her own words.
Michael Leach is editor-at-large and publisher emeritus of Orbis Books, and the author and editor of many books, most recently Positively Catholic (Loyola Press, 2016). He also edited Joyce Rupp's other books for Orbis, including The Cosmic DancePrayer, and Walk in a Relaxed Manner.

Author's Words:


You are like those long night trips
When my parents brought me home
After an evening away visiting friends.
I fell fast asleep in the car's backseat
And when we finally made our arrival
One of them carried me quietly to bed.
So it is with You Who Brings Us Home.
When we entrust ourselves to your love,
You carry us quietly into your loving arms,
Bringing us back to where we belong.

Today: I trust myself to
the One Who Brings Us Home.

   - Fragments, September 23.

Editor Leach's Words:

Joyce Rupp is a farmer's daughter. She is a planter, grower and spiritual midwife. She walks hundreds of miles a year and flies thousands more to answer the call of the wild and visit the sick in rich cities and small towns when Main Street often looks like an abandoned movie set. She is a writer, speaker and retreat giver who receives invitations from five continents. Her books have been published in seven languages. She sings both chants and golden oldies, teaches theology and practices transpersonal psychology, is a lifelong Catholic appreciated by people of all faiths, criticized by people in her own faith as out there. Indeed, Joyce is so far out there she is smack dab in the middle of where it's all at.

She once described herself like this:

''... I see that my writing really comes out of my roots on the farm. I am very wedded to the earth; that's where I found a lot of my spiritual connectedness, with nature... I call myself a "spiritual midwife" because I see myself not as the person who does the growing for someone else but as nurturing, energizing, being a catalyst, caring for and affirming the person in the growth process. I help them to nurture and care for themselves, just as a midwife would do in helping a woman prepare to give birth."

(The editor/interpreter of Rupp's work, Michael Leach assembles her poetry, essays and other writings under the themes of "Home", "Earth", "Cosmos", and "God.")

(Joyce's spiritual journey began in Iowa, branched far beyond it, then reached for the stars. Her study of world religions enriched her faith and expanded her visions... She became one who endeavours to see the Christ in others and, without trying, brings out what is good and beautiful in them.)...

Joyce's greatest gift to the universe, in my view, is her presence. She comes in a small package and speaks in a soft voice, but her presence can be felt a thousand miles away.

I wish I had saved the emails Joyce sent me when I was taking care of my aging parents in Chicago, flying back and forth (to New York) dealing with their needs and emotions, when at the same time Alzheimer's disease invaded my spouse Vickie's brain. Joyce's emails never preached, Her words were simple. They picked me up when I was down.

Joyce Rupp will be most remembered by those who weren't blessed to know her up close and personal but for her writings - on home, the earth, the stars in heaven, and God in each of us. This book is our gift to you.

- from the Introduction

My Thoughts:

Most Canadians of a certain age were born and raised in non-urban parts of Canada. Subsequently, many of us migrated from town and country to the city. But even those us who were born in one of Canada's metropolitan centres during the past half century have a feeling for the natural world beyond cities. That's one of he reasons, I believe, so many of us like to visit "the great outdoors" when we vacation or want to take a break. Most Canadians are not that far removed from "the farm" in one form or another. We tend to live in a few heavily populated centres on a very vast tract of land.

"Going home to the farm" is really a metaphor for "getting back to nature, the basics, the essentials of life" and that is what Joyce Rupp attempts to do for us in her writing and teaching. Perhaps one of the reasons so many seem to be abandoning our churches with its rituals and formalities is that we have lost touch with the basics; and people sense that. That is one of the values of a book like this. It helps us to recognize something we have known in the past, but seem to have lost - like, for example, the feeling of being truly cared for, as conveyed in the poem noted above - "One Who Brings Us Home."

Urbanites sometimes have a rather inflated view of what they know because they live in a more "sophisticated" environment. I learned early in my life when returning to my own rural roots for visits, or when I travelled to work with people in rural congregations, that many of the people I met seemed actually more in touch with what was going on than I was.

I'd don't mean to glorify or glamorize rural life by what I am saying. Many of the same evil challenges confront those in non-urban settings as they do everywhere else. But perhaps they may be more readily recognized.

For these and other reasons I encourage you to spend time with Joyce Rupp. A book like this one on her essential writings is a treasure, and one I think you would return to when you recognize the need to get in touch with the essentials of life and its meaning.


Review of the book from the Catholic Globe:

Buy the book from:



Michael Higgins,
Fairfield, CT

August 16th, 2017

Letter from Canada -
"Why is Canadian Catholicism So Muted?"


Jim Taylor,
Okanagan, BC

Personal Web Log
August 30th, 2017

"Another Parable of Talents"


Elfrieda Schroeder,
Winnipeg, MB

In Transit Blog
August 27th, 2017

"Life Begins at Eighty"


Ron Rolheaiser,
San Antonio, TX

Personal Web Site
August 28th, 2017

"Stuck in Traffic"



His Followers Protest Strongly

Religion News Service,
August 25th, 2017

While Regular Church Attendance Declines

Religion News Service
August 30th, 2017
Religious Leaders Commit to Joint Witness
UCA News,
August 31st, 2017

Uses Kayak to Transport People to Safety
August 29th, 2017

Dramatic Pictures of the Texas Floods

The Atlantic,
August 31st, 2017
Losing to General Trend to Online Buying, Better Quality

The Week,
August 28th, 2017
Sisters of Charity Order Continues to Grow

UCA News
August 30th, 2017


Once Church-Dividing Doctrines - But No Longer

America Magazine,
August 31st, 2017

Theological Students There are Minority Now

The Record,
August 25th, 2017

School Trained Mainly Christian Leaders

Religion News Service,
August 29th, 2017

Reject His Stance on Refugees, Immigration

Religion News Service,
August 24th, 2017


Globe and Mail,
August 29th, 2017

"I’ve had it with the monument wars"

“The virtuous vigilantes of the left are out to vilify all dead white males who were tainted by the common attitudes and beliefs of their time. ... Some of this revisionism is healthy. Most is not. The monument wars are also alienating millions of ordinary citizens who think history should be left alone and don’t want to see their statues trampled and torn down.”

- Margaret Wente



From Sojourners and the Bruderhof online:

Although the world is full of suffering,
it is also full of the overcoming of it.

- Helen Keller

Weary or bitter or bewildered as we may be, God is faithful. and lets us wander so we will know what it means to come home. 
- Marilynne Robinson

We have been called to be fruitful – not successful, not productive, not accomplished.

Success comes from strength, stress, and human effort. Fruitfulness comes from vulnerability and the admission of our own weakness.

- Henri J. M. Nouwen


Christ has no body now on earth but yours, no hands but yours, no feet but yours; yours are the eyes through which to look out Christ's compassion to the world, yours are the feet with which he is to go about doing good, yours are the hands with which he is to bless men now.

- Teresa of Ávila


We must learn to acknowledge that the creation is full of mystery; we will never entirely understand it. We must abandon arrogance and stand in awe. We must recover the sense of the majesty of creation, and the ability to be worshipful in its presence. For I do not doubt that it is only on the condition of humility and reverence before the world that our species will be able to remain in it.

- Wendell Berry


For God does not give us anything in order that we should enjoy its possession and rest content with it, nor has he ever done so. All the gifts which he has ever granted us in heaven or on earth were made solely solely in order to be able to give us the one gift, which is himself... We should learn to see God in all gifts and works, neither resting content with anything nor becoming attached to anything. For us there can be no attachment to a particular manner of behavior in this life, nor has this ever been right, however successful we may have been.

- Meister Eckhart


Many have forgotten that unofficial witness-bearing used to be the chief way by which the good news went around the world. I tell you, and you believe and receive and tell someone else, and he tells others. Frank, vital  telling in ordinary language that the Lord Jesus Christ lives and loves, and can save and keep, and can be known like a real friend, and is a Master who gives real orders and strength to carry them out – think of the power that is in that! Can you wonder that the devil detests it?

- Amy Carmichael



Globe and Mail,
August 30th, 3017

Rosemary Brown becomes the first black female MLA

August 30, 1972: On this day, Rosemary Brown made history. By getting elected to the B.C. Legislature, she became the first black woman to become an MLA. After immigrating to the country in 1951
from Jamaica, Brown was shocked at the discrimination prevalent in Canada, but advocated fiercely against it while she worked as a social worker. In a 1973 speech, the New Democrat said that “to be both black and female in a society which is both racist and sexist is to be in the unique position of having nowhere to go but up!” During her tenure as an MLA, which ran until 1986, she formed a committee to eliminate sexism in school textbooks and worked to prohibit discrimination on the basis of gender or marital status. In 1975, while raising three children, Brown ran for the leadership of the federal NDP. Although she lost, she became the first woman to ever make the attempt.

– Miriam Katawa


Globe and Mail,
September 1st 2017

Terry Fox ends his run

September 1, 1980: The pain, he could take. Losing most of his right leg to cancer was a challenge, but one he knew he could overcome. But seeing the children suffering with cancer knowing
he was in the lucky one-third who survived, that Terry Fox could not let go. His goal was to raise $1 for cancer research for every Canadian. His Marathon of Hope began in St. John’s, Nfld., and over the next 143 days, he ran 5,373 kilometres. But partway into his run on this day, just outside of Thunder Bay, Ont., the 22-year-old was forced to stop. The cancer had spread to his lungs. He would live to see his fundraising goal achieved but died nine months after his last run. Today, runs are held in his honour every September with participants from around the world, and his foundation has raised more than $715-million for cancer research.

Iain Boekhoff



Martin Luther King Issues "I Have a Dream" Speech

Archives of the New York Times:



To really belong to one another and to depend on one another -- and to really share a common destiny — is difficult for a community that wants to be diverse. It is also the community’s only hope of survival.


For Those Interested -


A Ten Week Series September 18th - November 27th, 2017
Monday Evenings, TM Room 7:00 PM - 9:00 PM

"CONVICTIONS - How I Learned What Matters Most"

Author: Marcus Borg
Registration/Hospitality and Book: $60.00.
Book only: $20.00

35 copies of the book have been secured for sale.
Registration and Book Sale Begins - August 27th

19 books sold after first sale day.

Read my background information on the study book:


Here is some course content from our
completed Monday Night Winter 2017 Study:

"How Jesus Became God: The Exaltation of a

Jewish Preacher from Galilee" by Bart D. Ehrman
Check our entire archives for all 49 books
studied since 2000: 

During the 2016-2017 two session-term -
Total class registrations: 70
Total books sold: 75

Our best year ever, since 1998!



Ten Sessions September 21st - November 30th, 2017

Biblical book(s) to be studied this autumn to be determined

by the class at the first session of the term, Thursday, Sept. 21st.

Ten sessions 10-11 AM
Gathering at 9:30 AM in the St. David's TM Room.

No charge

Study resource -

"The DK Complete Bible Handbook"
  Edited by John Bowker



South Africa has been chosen as our destination!
We plan a nineteen-day tour that combines a focus
on spirituality, social justice, culture, and nature,
and it will run October 21st thru November 8th.

A beautiful brochure with trip cost, itinerary, and
many helpful travel hints has been published.

Twenty-five persons have registered and paid

in full to take the trip. This will be our tour group.
All together,  thirty-two persons made deposits
but some had to withdraw for health or other
We have activated a South Africa Spiritual Travelers
discussion list group to begin building community
amongst the participants, and to share news and

We hope to name a tour reporter who will notify
back home each day's activities so everyone can
enjoy the experience, at least indirectly.

Less than two months from now we leave for South Africa!

Contact Rostad Tours:

Follow these notices for weekly updates.











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