A $1,000 grant to Saint Francis Ministries from the Salina Area United Way is helping the organization’s efforts to provide needed dollars and support to foster and kinship families being affected by the COVID-19 outbreak. The pandemic is having a significant impact on families around the world, and it is certainly affecting many of the foster care and kinship families that Saint Francis serves.
Winter is not my favorite season. Through January and February, the darkness and the cold begin to feel oppressive and heavy on my soul. As a result, I am always on the lookout for signs that spring is around the corner. These signs include the hardy flowers like crocuses and daffodils poking up – even through snow cover some years and of course the return of birdsong serenading me early in the morning. Having grown up in central Kansas one of the other signs that spring has sprung for me are the lush emerald green fields of winter wheat leaving its dormant state and coming to life once again. After months of seeing grey and beige, the bright green of these fields always puts a smile on my face.
April 10, 2020 - Saint Francis Ministries is providing notice of an incident that may affect the security of certain individuals affiliated with Saint Francis. While we are unaware of any attempted or actual misuse of this information, we are providing potentially affected individuals with additional details about the incident and our response.
Singer and songwriter John Prine passed away Tuesday in Nashville. Prine was seventy-three. However, Prine’s music still lives on and will continue to do so. For me personally, John Prine was more than just a great artist. Prine was a theologian whose songs connected the human condition of suffering with the hope of a better tomorrow. Prine had a hope that humanity would come to its senses and learn to love and care for each other. And on the first Good Friday and this Good Friday, hope seems to be in short supply.
"Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends.” John 15:13 (KJV) A picture is worth a thousand words. At least that’s how the old saying goes. I find this to be true. Just take a moment and scroll through your photo library on your phone. Or look at all your photos on Facebook. And look at a picture of a relative who has passed on from this life. I’ve found that looking at these pictures often brings up memories, good and bad. It’s as if each picture has a story to tell- some shorter than a thousand words and many that could fill a thousand-page book. Pictures are memories, stories, parts of our lives that are frozen glimpses of our individual life stories. Pictures really are worth a thousand words.
There is a meme circulating social media of late that I have really appreciated. It simply says, “This is the Lentiest Lent I’ve ever Lented.” It certainly holds true for me. As a reminder, this season of Lent is the 40-day preparation period for Christians before the celebration of Easter. It is a time that has long been characterized by increased prayer, acts of mercy, and by giving up or fasting from items that we enjoy or love.
Staying home during the COVID-19 crisis is supposed to be a safety measure that protects our community, ourselves, and our children from further spread of the coronavirus. Unfortunately, for many children, home is anything but a haven. April is Child Abuse Prevention Month, set aside to raise awareness about child abuse and to promote the physical and emotional well‐being of children and families in safe, stable, and nurturing environments. That responsibility has become even more acute during this pandemic when so many families are home alone together, isolated and often invisible to their neighbors. “This is a particularly dangerous time because many of the ‘respite’ options, such as school and work, are not available to parents and children,” says Pamela Cornwell, Saint Francis Ministries’ clinical director. “This can create tension and pressure in the home. So, it’s important during this time for us all to remain vigilant and to reach out to anyone we might have concerns about.”
So, you’re three weeks into working from home, and you feel exhausted. Yeah, you’re still wearing your sweatpants and t-shirt, but the lifestyle has lost its lustre – especially if haven’t washed those sweatpants for a few days. You’re still chugging along, getting your work done, but some days you just feel like you’re losing steam. Isn’t working from home supposed to make you feel happier, freer, more relaxed? Well, for the most part, yes. But there’s a lot going on right now. Most of us are inundated with a flood of information, warnings, and distractions. We’re getting it from the news, social media, and even our workplace as organizations struggle to respond to the COVID-19 crisis. Here are a few ideas to navigate the noise and come out of this with most of your mental health intact.
“In the sixth month the angel Gabriel was sent by God to a town in Galilee called Nazareth, to a virgin engaged to a man whose name was Joseph, of the house of David. The virgin's name was Mary. And he came to her and said, "Greetings, favored one! The Lord is with you." But she was much perplexed by his words and pondered what sort of greeting this might be.” Luke 1:26-29