Monthly Archives

November 2021

Attending to Loss – receiving support

Glimmers November 18, 2021

Dear Friends,

A new day…we step into the 2021 holiday season with open eyes. Last year’s November and December changed us, as we learned to cherish what we held most dear. With Thanksgiving around the corner, Christmas and Hanukkah coming soon, perhaps our hearts will deepen further into the mystery of our human connection.

I gratefully experienced that connection from this community of hope, following my November 7th Glimmer. Thank you for responding with prayer, love and kindness toward my request for prayer. When I decided to share my loss with you, my intention was to ask for that prayer and, possibly, allow a bit of my journey to support yours. I did not expect to be taught how to receive your support, I did not expect to experience a wave of sustaining love as my days moved forward. The retreat went well, the Sisters heard of your prayer and were grateful for our time together. But if I may, I’d like to explore this other side of asking for prayer – the willingness to receive love. 

I suspect that many of us resist the idea of receiving love and prayer, let alone asking for it. But I am learning, as a pilgrim in the Land of Loss, what a gift it is to read/hear words of encouragement and faith on my behalf. I allowed my heart to open and my soul to be nourished. There is a degree of surrender in the process, though, a measure of letting go into the Mystery that makes this exchange difficult. To ask for and to receive your prayer, I must admit my vulnerability. To ask for and to receive your prayer, I move toward a new understanding of trust. 

Another element of the journey became very clear…. while we do not know the very intimate details of another’s loss, our heart’s willingness to be present becomes part of their healing. I initially “pushed away” the messages that presumed I was in deep sadness at my stepfather’s death. Unfortunately, my sadness has lasted through 60 years of wounds from a dysfunctional relationship. His death brought difficult things to mind, my Land of Loss experience is complicated. But as your messages of prayer and support continued, I relinquished my grip on the narrative. My heart softened and healed, as I allowed myself to receive God’s love through your intervention. 

I share this with you friends, to offer a glimpse into another’s journey. I know I am not the only one with challenging relationships, confusing loss, and complicated grief. Perhaps my vulnerability will support you, my prayer sustain you, as we wander together through the fields and forests of loss. Thank you for sharing your willing hearts.

peace, Lisa

Attending to Loss – asking for prayer

Glimmers November 7, 2021


Dear Friends,

For those of you who know me through my work in loss and grief, you know about the Land Of Loss. This image, and the travels through it, are how I understand the powerful experience of loss, change, grief and transformation. When I was writing my book, I hoped that no one died in my little world until I was done because when you are in the Land of Loss, you look at things differently. I have entered the Land of Loss, my 97-year-old step father died on Tuesday. This loss has stirred up long-ago feelings and memories that, once in a while, return for my attention.

Today’s Glimmer is a request for your loving thoughts and prayer. Tomorrow, I will be driving to the Bronx to offer a 24 hour retreat for the Sisters of Charity of New York on loss, grief and hope. I wish to continue my ministry as authentically as possible, and so will explore the Land of Loss with these dear women in a new way. I bring you with me, your losses and you desire for healing. Together, we find our way. I close with this lovely blessing from Jan Richardson.

Peace, friends, Lisa


Solace Blessing by Jan Richardson

That’s it.                                             

That’s all this blessing                             

knows how to do:                              

Shine your shoes.                                   

Fill your refrigerator.                               

Water your plants.                                 

Make some soup.                                  


All the things

your cannot think                                   

to do yourself                                      

when the world

has come apart,                                   

when nothing                                         

will be normal                                     




this blessing knows

precisely what you need.                    

even before                                           

you know.                                              

It sees what will bring                           

the deepest solace                              

for you.                                               

It senses what will offer                      

the kindest grace.


And so it will step

with such quietness

 into the ordinary moments

where the absence

is the deepest.


 It will enter

with such tenderness

 into the hours

where the sorrow

is most keen.


You do not even

 have to ask.


Just leave it open –

your door,

your heart,

your day

in every aching moment

 it holds.


See what solace

spills through the gaps

your sorrow has torn.

See what comfort

comes to visit,

holding out its gifts

in each compassionate hand.