reflection

Homelessness and Matthew 25

By Sister Regina Siegfried, ASC

Steve wears a long, heavy winter coat in the middle of a scorching St. Louis summer. Sally hasn’t been sober in months. Both are chronically mentally ill and homeless.

As a long-time parishioner and part-time staff member of St. Vincent De Paul Parish in St. Louis, I join with staff, parishioners, and volunteers in relating to the homeless daily.

It’s often a thankless, frustrating, and seemingly hopeless encounter. But is it?

from freeimages.comThe homeless, probably some of the most forgotten and neglected members of society,

Hummers, Autumn, Caregivers and the Divine

By Sr. Janis Yaekel ASC

I am Sister Janis Yaekel, ASC and I have pancreatic cancer. In fact, I have lived with cancer since 2012. I hope to share in my blog my journey and my reflections on the presence of God in my life. It is my hope that those who read my entries will find strength for their own journeys. 

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Last week, I had a rough first few days but by Thursday, I was feeling stronger than I had in some time. Of course, this happened just in time for me to have my next chemo treatment.

Touchy Topic Tuesday: Fixing Our Broken Systems

By Sr. Regina Siegfried, ASC

You’ve probably heard the old cliché, “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.” But how do we fix systems that are not working for the common good? Consider the broken systems of political parties, government, health care, education, police and courts, church. The list is endless. Add your own.

We are trapped in and surrounded by systems that often provide more disservice than service. When organizations get blindsided and neglect the very people they were created to serve, their systems break. We can feel powerless in the face of such mega-structures.

Cancer Upends a Vacation

By Sr. Janis Yaekel ASC

I am Sister Janis Yaekel, ASC and I have pancreatic cancer. In fact, I have lived with cancer since 2012. I hope to share in my blog my journey and my reflections on the presence of God in my life. It is my hope that those who read my entries will find strength for their own journeys. 

I recently found out how bumpy a vacation can be.

Last month, I was maid of honor at the wedding of my friends Cindy and Al in Romeoville,

Monarchs and the Gardener

By Sr. Regina Siegfried, ASC

Gardens are quickly phasing into fall. During the last weeks of August and early September, I quietly and carefully watched the monarch butterflies flit in the butterfly bush and the milkweed plants.

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Plump green-and-black-striped monarch caterpillars soon nibbled and munched their ways through the milkweed leaves, stripping several of them to thin, nubby stalks. I didn’t find any chrysalis but I assume those caterpillars know enough to find a safe place to metamorphose into the next generation of monarchs on their annual flight to Mexico.

Cancer Scans: Waiting for Answers

By Sister Janis Yaekel ASC

I am Sister Janis Yaekel, ASC and I have pancreatic cancer. In fact, I have lived with cancer since 2012. I hope to share in my blog my journey and my reflections on the presence of God in my life. It is my hope that those who read my entries will find strength for their own journeys. 

I recently had a CAT scan of my lungs and an MRI of my abdomen, so I want to tell you about the time between getting tests and hearing the results.

image from freeimages.com

Immigration: A Festival of Nations

image from freeimages.comby Sr. Regina Siegfried, ASC

Tower Grove Park, a city gem of a Victorian walking park, hosts the International Institute’s Festival of Nations every year at the end of August.  The park’s gracefully curving roads are crowded tent-to-tent with food and craft booths from more nations than you can count.  Open grassy areas sprout stages for ethnic dances, drums, and storytelling.  Thousands of people visit to sample excellent food, beautiful arts, and lively music.  Cars constantly troll the neighborhood streets surrounding the park looking for that elusive parking spot while residents’ autos hunker down in that cherished location,

Thank a Teacher

la-habana-6-1450639-1599x2404by Sr. Regina Siegfried, ASC

Cicadas rasp their hymns to the waning days of summer. The big yellow buses rumble on their routes through crowded city streets and winding rural roads to collect students who wonder how the summer days evaporated.

Last week I walked through St. Louis University’s campus before attending part of student orientation at Aquinas Institute where I teach a class to a group of intercommunity novices. It was an adrenaline rush, a deep feeling of being at home, a profound understanding of why I love teaching.

I also recently attended a benefit concert/reunion of a high-school band;

Cancer and the Sweetness of Peaches

By Sr. Janis Yaekel, ASC

I am Sister Janis Yaekel, ASC and I have pancreatic cancer. In fact, I have lived with cancer since 2012. I hope to share in my blog my journey and my reflections on the presence of God in my life. It is my hope that those who read my entries will find strength for their own journeys. 

 

It has been a pretty good week so far, if not a great week. Some of the side effects of chemotherapy seem to linger into the second week now,

Atomic Bombs and Police Shootings: An Anniversary

By Sr. Regina Siegfried, ASC

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Three events — distant, distinct, and yet somehow related — have converged since Aug. 6, the Catholic feast of the Transfiguration and the 70th anniversary of the day the U.S. dropped the atomic bomb on Hiroshima. Aug. 9 marked the one-year anniversary of the police shooting death of Michael Brown, which led to protests, riots, marches and disturbances that rocked Ferguson and the nation.

Except for a violent eruption the night of Aug. 9, the day in Ferguson and St. Louis was more peaceful and reflective than the violence that marred last year.