About Me
"I will put My Spirit within you And you will come to life." Ez:37

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II.About me
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The Cathedral of St. Paul, Minnesota

This beautiful Cathedral is a major landmark in St. Paul Minnesota where I was born into an Irish Catholic family and had the good fortune to be educated by the Sisters of St. Joseph of Carondolet at St. Joseph's Academy and the College of St. Catherine. .

Although I have a PhD in sociology from the University of Minnesota, these days I am primarily a spiritual writer and speaker. But more important, I am Lay Cistercian of Gethsemani Abbey, the Trappist Monastery in Kentucky that was home to Thomas Merton.

Monk's Choir at Gethsemani

Every life has turning points. Mine began fifteen years ago, with a retreat made partly out of curiosity, at the Trappist monastery in Kentucky. Like many readers of Thomas Merton’s Seven Storey Mountain, Gethsemani Abbey embodied the summit of my spiritual search. Something profound and unexpected happened to me during that retreat.

There is something about Gethsemani, and praying the hours with the monks, that evokes a response. There is something about the rhythm – about Vigils at 3:15 am, Lauds at 5:45am followed by Mass, breakfast, and the little hours through the day – Terce, Sext, None – then Vespers at 5:30pm and Compline at 7:30pm to end the day. There is something about the psalms and the silence that permeates the soul. I look back and realize that from that time on, I felt a subtle shift in my priorities. To paraphrase the Ezekiel passage at the top of each of my pages: He put His Spirit within me and I came to life.

It began when I decided to go to Mass one weekday, for just that one morning. The next day I decided to go to Mass again, for just one more morning. And so it continued, from one day to the next, until the present. Now my husband (Emeritus Professor of Philosophy from the Ohio State University) and I attend daily Mass at Immaculate Conception parish in Columbus, Ohio. We also participate in our parish's Perpetual Adoration; his hour is at 2:00AM every Wednesday, and mine is at 2:00PM also on Wednesday.

Since the monastery experience fifteen years ago I began to read scripture with my heart, to meditate, to set time apart for prayer. My enthusiasm for this wonderful new awareness of God leads me to share it with others through my writing and my workshops which focus on personal spiritual growth and prayer.

Find out more about my writings and my presentations

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