Mark Saucier
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A cake, ablaze with candles toasting the shredded coconut at their feet, was no subtle reminder that another year had passed. In that piercing light, I could not deny that I had reached the … more
“I gave them the Beatitudes, and all they do is quote Leviticus...” I can see Jesus saying this, sighing and sadly shaking his head. Leviticus, of course, is part of the Torah, … more
Raw. Bitter. Numbing. Brutal. Take your pick, because this cold wave requires an adjective — an added word to communicate the life-threatening effects of sub-zero temperatures and … more
I don’t know if you noticed it, but another year has passed. It saddens me in some ways. I remember when it arrived, full of hope and promise. And then suddenly, it was gone, quietly … more
No Christmas pageant would be complete without a young girl in white dress and veil playing the role of Mary. Remember, though, that, unlike the men of the gospels, Mary was not allowed to take … more
Advent. From the Latin  adventus,  meaning coming or arrival. What is coming? Christmas. Incarnation. Emmanuel, the dwelling of God with us. What is coming? The Parousia, the … more
There’s a story of the Irish writer Samuel Becket on a walk with a friend in Paris on a beautiful spring morning. “Doesn’t this just make you feel happy to be alive?” his … more
Going through the mail the other day, I found a check for $905.45. Apparently, some overfed algorithm inferred that a retired couple of former Church workers could use extra cash. It was a … more
Years ago, I was in Santa Cruz, Bolivia. Walking across a plaza, I saw a small group of people staring up at a mango tree. I looked up but saw nothing extraordinary until a man next to me … more
It is the most unmistakable sign of autumn. More than changing leaves, shortened days or cooler nights, it’s the falling locust pods that tell me that summer is past and winter is fast … more
On the surface, Jesus sells pretty well. Who wouldn’t want forgiveness, grace and eternal life? I know I do. But once you get into the weeds, it can be a little more challenging. … more
We were on a retreat in the rugged Ozark foothills — a day aside for prayer and reflection. In one of our silent hours, I ventured into the pathless woods.  The woods have always … more
The other day, we were watching a couple of our granddaughters. Out of the blue, the 4-year-old informed me, “I don’t know why Grandpa, but I love you.” I smile … more
The Germans have a word for it. From the people who gave us schadenfreude for that pleasure we get from another’s failure, and  zeitgeist  for the spirit of the times, we get  … more
Recent congressional testimony of UFOs and alleged “non-human biologics” intrigued me. I recalled a story which now may not be apocryphal after all. Not that long ago, our … more
We looked like an intergenerational field trip as we gathered at the trailhead. Twenty of us, from a backpacked toddler to a couple of older dawdlers, were intent on tackling a hike that started … more
In  King Lear , it’s the fool Edgar who has the last word: “The weight of this sad time we must obey, Speak what we feel, not what we ought to say.” Behind the … more
The disciples, desperate for something more tangible than homespun allegories, asked Jesus to teach them to pray. I wonder what their reaction was when he gave them the “Our Father.” … more
The Hebrew Scriptures have many takes on aging and death. There is the story of Enoch, the great grandfather of Noah, who “walked with God, and he was no longer here, for God took … more
It’s the season of caps and gowns, big dreams and a beckoning future. Commencement speakers are advising graduates to go for the gold, dig deep and change the world. The diploma-ed … more
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