that have inspired me along the way...

inspiring quotes

Favorite Books

Everything Belongs: The Gift of Contemplative Prayer, Falling Upward and Eager to Love

by Richard Rohr, OFM

A New Earth: Awakening to Your Life’s Purpose by Eckhart Tolle

The Power of Purpose

by Richard J. Leider

The Gift of Being Yourself

by David G. Benner

A Return to Love and The Healing of America by Marianne Williamson

Let Your Life Speak: Listening for the Voice of Vocation by Parker Palmer

The Soul of Money: Reclaiming the Wealth of Our Inner Resources
by Lynne Twist

The Prophet by Kahlil Gibran

Open Mind, Open Heart
by Father Thomas Keating

Narrative of Sojourner Truth
by Sojourner Truth

Tattoos on the Heart: The Power of Boundless Compassion
by Gregory Boyle, SJ

Be who you are and be that well. – St. Frances de Sales

If we have no peace, it is because we have forgotten that we belong to each other. – Mother Theresa

This is the true joy in life: Being used for a purpose recognized by yourself as a mighty one, being a force of nature instead of a feverish, selfish little clod of ailments and grievances, complaining that the world will not devote itself to making you happy. I am of the opinion that my life belongs to the whole community and as long as I live, it is my privilege to do for it what I can. It is a sort of splendid torch which I have got hold of for the moment and I want to make it burn as brightly as possible before handing it on to future generations. – George Bernard Shaw

Only those who will risk going too far can possibly find out how far one can go. – T.S. Eliot


Faith is believing in spite of the evidence and then watching the evidence change. – Jim Wallis of Sojourners

For it is time. It is time for all of us who follow Christ to recognize him and to proclaim him. It is time to be prophetic about the Christ we know is present in the folks who are pushed aside, dismissed, left out, undermined, underfed, unhoused, or simply unseen and unheard. It is time for the people of God to stop marching along with the status quo in search of security, power, and control, but to stumble instead towards the margins where we will encounter a magic and a mystery that will plunge us trembling but rejoicing into the Realm of God. – Edwina Gately, Christ in the Margins

Faith is the strength by which a shattered world shall emerge into the light. – Helen Keller

When you become comfortable with uncertainty, infinite possibilities open up in your life. It means fear is no longer a dominant factor in what you do and no longer prevents you from taking action to initiate change. The Roman philosopher Tacitus rightly observed that “the desire for safety stands against every great and noble enterprise.” If uncertainty is unacceptable to you, it turns into fear. If it is perfectly acceptable, it turns into increased aliveness, alertness, and creativity. – Eckhart Tolle, A New Earth

Out beyond ideas of wrongdoing and rightdoing, there's a field.
I'll meet you there. – Rumi

We must bear patiently not being good. We are so afraid of not being liked by others that we live our own lives inside their opinion.  Can’t we accept that we are just human beings? – Chapter 101 of Thomas of Celano’s original Life of St. Francis of Assisi

The important thing is this: to be able at any moment to sacrifice what we are for what we could become. – Charles DuBois

Be the change you wish to see in the world. – Ghandi

Until one is committed, there is hesitancy, the chance to draw back. Concerning all acts of  initiative (and creation), there is one elementary truth that ignorance of which kills countless ideas and splendid plans: that the moment one definitely commits oneself, then Providence moves too. All sorts of things occur to help one that would never otherwise have occurred. A whole stream of events issues from the decision, raising in one’s favor all manner of unforeseen incidents and meetings and material assistance, which no man could have dreamed would have come his way. Whatever you can do, or dream you can do, begin it. Boldness has genius, power, and magic in it. Begin it now. – Goethe

Where there is great love, there are always miracles. --Willa Cather

We live in succession, in division, in parts, in particles. Meantime within man is the soul of the whole; the wise silence; the universal beauty, to which every part and particle is equally related, the eternal ONE. – Ralph Waldo Emerson

Faith does not need to push the river because faith is able to trust that there is a river. The river is flowing. We are in it. – Fr. Richard Rohr

I believe that we have no real access to who we really are except in God. Only when we rest in God can we find the safety, the spaciousness, and the scary freedom to be who we are, all that we are, more than we are, and less than we are. – attributed to Carl Jung

The most pleasant and useful persons are those who leave some of the problems of the universe for God to worry about. – Don Marquis

When we let go of trying to get more of what we don’t really need, we free up an enormous amount of energy that has been tied up in the chase. We can refocus and reallocate that energy and attention toward appreciating what we already have, what’s already there, and making a difference with that. Not just noticing it, but making a difference with what we already have. When you make a difference with what you have, it expands. – Lynne Twist, The Soul of Money

The future enters into us, in order to transform itself in us, long before it happens. – Rainer Maria Rilke

Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness, that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous? Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God. Your playing small doesn’t serve the world. There’s nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won’t feel insecure around you. We are all meant to shine, as children do. We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. It’s not just in some of us; it’s in everyone. And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we’re liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others. – Marianne Williamson

If God is the center of your life, no words are necessary. Your mere presence will touch hearts. –  St. Vincent de Paul

Unless someone like you cares a whole awful lot, nothing is going to get better. It's not. – The Lorax by Dr. Seuss

Doesn’t everything die at last, and too soon?

Tell me, what is it you plan to do

with your one wild and precious life?

–Mary Oliver, The Summer Day

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The photo above is one I made from a work of art called “Resurrection” by Ansgar Holmberg, CSJ

The quote accompanying it is from a song that has greatly impacted my life by musician Chris Rice.

“Take your candle and go light your world.” 
– Chris Rice

In April of 2007, I had a life-transforming experience in which I came to experience the absolute wonder and joy of being alive, and the profound difference our lives can make when we stand inside our commitments and deepest desires, rather than our fears. As I’ve attempted to integrate this experience into my life, and understand where it is leading me, I have been drawn to the words and spiritual insights of a number of contemporary writers as well as wisdom figures throughout the ages. I share with you these words of wisdom from my Catholic/Christian tradition as well as others. I hope you find them as illuminating and life-giving as I have.

Here are links to organizations that have greatly contributed to the quality of my life, and my sense of self and purpose:

Center for Action & Contemplation

Contemplative Outreach

Landmark Education

Visitation Monastery of Minneapolis