Rev. Bob Ragan


A Miraculous Encounter


It feels like I am in an extended state of waiting. With all the uncertainty of 2020, I am waiting for some form of normality to return! Unfortunately, what was “normal” may never return the way I would like. That reality contributes to a degree of anxiety in my waiting process. In chapter 2:25-35 of the Gospel of Luke, we read of a man who was well acquainted with waiting. His name was Simeon...

What Glad Tidings Do You Ache to Hear?


When was the last time you used the word “behold” in a sentence? Behold, the pizza had arrived! Behold, I bring you the budget report! “Behold” is an archaic term, and yet according to Strong’s concordance, it is used over 1,300 times in the King James Bible. Generally, the use of the word “behold” was to obtain one’s notice. One online commentator translated “behold” like this: “Hey...

The Certainty of Advent


Isaiah prophesied to Israel about the coming of the Messiah. The Israelites would have to experience battles and the Babylonian captivity before the fulfillment of Isaiah’s prophecy. They lived with expectation for the coming of Jesus for the next eight centuries! Imagine hearing Isaiah’s words being read and spoken throughout those centuries amid such turmoil, grief, and loss. Imagine the...

A Single Man’s Observations for Those in Quarantine


“Jesus changes our history from a random series of sad incidents and accidents into a constant opportunity for a change of heart.” from Out of Solitude: Three Meditations on the Christian Life by Henri J.M. Nouwen I consider myself to be an extroverted introvert. Translation: I enjoy being in the company of others, but also decidedly cherish my time alone. Upon entering my home, I embrace...

Are You Ready for the Unexpected?


It started like any other workday. The sun was low in the sky as Seth departed for his evening shift. He enjoyed his work tending animals. Seth had pet names for many of them, and they knew his voice. The animals felt safe and secure under his care. Seth gathered with his coworkers. It was a beautiful evening with the stars brightly shining as they walked in the fields, guarding their flocks of...

How Stable are You?


I have deep admiration and respect for those who commit to religious community. There is an order and flow found in a monastery or convent, which is distinct from the many distractions I daily encounter. A deep part of me desires to be in such a setting. However, I am where God has placed me. How can I experience a monastic order in the middle of my chaos? The most significant vow a Benedictine...

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