Category

Death/Dying

Not grim and not somber, this category wades into matters of death and dying with some observations about the big picture and details that sometimes don’t see the light of day!  Full of years, readers and viewers will find this category a good place to begin conversations and redeem what might otherwise seem to be an easily avoided part of life.

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Ians by a different name

Hurricane Ian seems oddly christened. In its original Gaellic, Ian means “God is good.” As a suffix, ”ian” indicates that its root has the same qualities. (Thus we know that a guardian shares the characteristics of a guard, or a librarian can be identified by whatever a library might be.) Right now it may be hard to see Ian, the catastrophic hurricane, as something good. There doesn’t seem to beMORE...

Easter in Russia

  In a few days, members of Russian Orthodox churches will celebrate Easter. I’ve been trying to imagine how it might feel for them to experience Easter this year. These believers—and Christians of other faith communities—may find themselves in contexts similar to those faced by Jesus’ followers on that first Easter. Those first disciples lived in a country tightly controlled by tyrants andMORE...

Relentless regeneration

I have no desire to be a starfish. (What would I do with five arms?) But this wonderful sea creature does possess one trait that might be just a bit enviable. Like a number of other astounding organisms—e.g., lizards, salamanders, sea cucumbers—starfish can grow back limbs and other parts of their bodies that have been damaged or severed.  The process is called *regeneration and it’s alwaysMORE...

No joke

I don’t tell lawyer jokes. And I try to indicate my displeasure—not laughing—when someone tells one. Today’s thoughts spin out my reasoning. My emotions, too. A few days ago, a dear member of our congregation—we’ll call him Scott—died suddenly. He was a lawyer, highly regarded and beloved by clients and colleagues. He was born and raised around here, so his mourners have long histories that theyMORE...

In an instant

Advent seeds have been sprouting in my spirit during Lent. The seeds? Things begin, but they also end. Both can happen in an instant. The seasonal growth of these kernels takes a little more time to describe. On one hand, Advent heralds both the end of all things—Judgment Day—and their beginning—A Baby Savior foretells deliverance. On the other hand, Lent leads me through the horrors of punishingMORE...

*Obituary tips

If icebergs reveal only their tips—they aren’t shy, just heavy—it seems possible that obituaries might also share that characteristic. Perhaps the same heft.  In both cases, there’s more to be seen and told. I have known about this similarity—icebergs and obituaries—for years. Every day I read the Obituary section of the newspaper. I wrote obits for both my parents. I understand how theMORE...

The household manual, Part 2

As I’ve been writing a manual about our household—in printed and digital formats—I’ve also realized the benefits of this effort. Perhaps you could find similar blessings writing your own descriptions and instructions. While engaged in details-sleuthing and writing, I’ve realized that I can at the same time organize household files, simplify processes, discard unused items and remember what thisMORE...

The household manual, Part 1

Here’s an idea that might be helpful…. Like me, you may have experienced what happens when an executor or adult child has to pick up the pieces of a legacy or estate when a loved one has died. Those who remain must sort through perhaps-confusing elements of normal household functioning. In too many cases, that information is scattered, hidden or non-existent. Your loss creates chaos and begs forMORE...

A COVID Advent

Advent will soon be peeking out from our calendars. This time around, Advent will be observed in the middle of a worldwide epidemic. It’s possible, though, that these four weeks could be helpful for our spirits. COVID-19 is called a coronavirus because its cells’ club-shaped projections resemble the tines of a crown. During this past Lent, this crown-mimicry recalled the thorned-garland crushedMORE...

What else is there to think about?

  Over the past week or so, I’ve been waiting for the coronavirus news to settle down. Here’s why: Whether out of prudence, trying to fill empty leadership niches or injecting trust and truth back into the emotional economy, leaders of all kinds have been filling my mailbox with assurances and information. I appreciate their thoughtfulness. This is probably a once-in-a-lifetime crisis, andMORE...

Bob Sitze

BOB SITZE has filled the many years of his lifework in diverse settings around the United States. His calling has included careers as a teacher/principal, church musician, writer/author, denominational executive staff member and meat worker. Bob lives in Wheaton, IL.

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