One River, Many Wells

fountains

In my work as a hospital chaplain I never know from day to day what I may be called upon to work with as I step into a patient’s room.  Huntsville, Alabama is a religiously diverse community which includes Hindus, Buddhists, Muslims, Jews, Christians of many denominations, Pagans, Baha'i and others.  While most of my patient encounters to date have been with Christian families, I have also been called upon to act as chaplain in grief work with other faiths as well.  Such encounters demand … [Read more...]

A Call to Activism

Skelligs - 2009

On the 8th of May we mark the 69th anniversary of the surrender of Nazi Germany to the Allied Forces. The horror and the tragedy of the rise of the Nazi party and the Nazi ideology in Germany is that so much of what happened might have been preventable if people had been willing to stand up and say “This is wrong!” when it was first noticed that the powers that be were imprisoning, killing, and discriminating against their own citizens. The Holocaust did not happen overnight, it happened in … [Read more...]

Growing the Interfaith Garden

redbuds

It is April now and here in the South that means that spring is all around us.  The redbuds and dogwoods are in bloom and the trees in the woods behind my house are covered in a pale green lace of tiny leaves.  As the earth has warmed I have been drawn more and more to get my fingers in the dirt.  I’ve been cleaning out the detritus of fall leaves, pruning the rose bushes, and planting new flowers and herbs for the coming season.  It is a fitting reminder that the promise of life renewed … [Read more...]

Down South Diversity

alg-tenn-mosque-jpg

The other day, I read a "you know you're a New Yorker/ Californian/Midwesterner/Southerner when..." post in my G+ stream that consisted primarily of mildly to moderately negative stereotypes. Needless to say, this is not a form of "humor" I enjoy. Not only do Southerners rarely have names like "Jim Bob" and "Billy Sue," but there is also a high degree of variation in dialect rather than a single "Southern" mode of speech. And I'm going to need y'uns to spell "y'all" correctly if you're going to … [Read more...]

Who Are We Kidding?

Interfaith2

All right, I admit it.  I am off on a bit of a rant this week.  At the moment I am feeling more than a bit frustrated.  Many of us are active in community interfaith work because we sincerely believe that it is important that we open honest discussions with people of other spiritual practices because understanding and openness can and will lead to better communities.  Since moving here to Huntsville, my husband and I have been active with both the Interfaith Mission Service and more recently … [Read more...]

A Thousand Years from Now

Parthenon-Dusk

I want to start the year off on a positive, forward-looking note and imagine what our work here will produce in the distant future. There's this fantasy that tumbles around in my head from time to time of a world in which Pagan temples of various sorts are common. Because it's my fantasy, the temple takes the shape of one to honor the gods of Ancient Greece and there's a sanctuary with altars and various statues, office space for the priests and priestesses, a daycare, and a small library. We … [Read more...]

Sharing the Journey

interfaith-mural

On the 26th of January I am going to be speaking about the beliefs and practices of Wicca at our monthly Diversity Dinner here in Huntsville.  The people who attend these informal potluck dinners come from a variety of different religious faiths.  What draws them together is the sincere desire to better understand the teachings of other religions so as to create tolerance and accord among those of different faiths. One of the things which creates discord and violence around the world is … [Read more...]

The War on Christmas

Poinsettia_2

Several excellent authors have already covered the so-called "war on Christmas," but since the holiday season provides plenty of opportunity for interfaith interaction, I wanted to touch on this subject a little bit here at Wild Garden. I've been trying to figure out what, exactly, the "War on Christmas" is. From our house, this is a time of good cheer when we stick a tree in the living room and drink a ridiculous amount of hot cocoa. As I write this, the sun is hitting the tinsel just so and … [Read more...]


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