• So many of you have hastily dispersed; many of you are grieving the loss of community, hopes, plans. Sudden changes, uncertain future — we’re not the first.

  • A Note to All Campus

    12 March 2020

    As we each begin to negotiate what the coronavirus and the college’s temporary move to online courses means, I wanted to take a moment to let you know that the Chaplain’s Office, like all faculty and staff at Carleton, are here to support you in any way we can.

  • The earth is not ours. The first humans, according to Genesis 2:15, were placed in the Garden of Eden, “To till and to tend” (Genesis 2:15). “To till” is to be in relationship with the earth in order to grow that which will sustain us. “To tend” is to protect it. To till and to tend means to live sustainably.

  • Bending the Arc

    5 September 2019

    Four hundred years ago, in August 1619, a ship arrived in Virginia carrying 20 enslaved Africans.  With their sale to colonists, slavery began in America.  As The New York Times “1619 Project” discusses, this legacy of slavery shaped American history and current social, political, and economic life.  

    It can be hard to see any bend toward justice in such a long arc and thus understandable why some people are angry, fearful, or depressed….


  • Antisemitism, Islamophobia, and white supremacy are on the rise in this country and around the world.  The October attack on the synagogue in Pittsburgh, the recent attacks on the two mosques in New Zealand, and the 2015 attack on the Black church in Charleston are horrific examples of this.  

  • We Are Like One Body

    11 December 2018

    The parable of the believers in their affection, mercy, and compassion for each other is that of a body. When any limb aches, the whole body reacts with sleeplessness and fever.
    (Ṣaḥīḥ al-Bukhārī 5665)  

    In a world that often feels like we are pulling further and further away from one another, I am reminded of this saying of the Prophet Muhammad (peace and blessings) that as human beings, we are like one body: When one of us is hurting or attacked, all of us are in pain.

  • Awe and Wonder

    31 August 2018

    Our interfaith dialogue group sometimes does an exercise called “Speed Faithing,” talking briefly with several people about a variety of topics.  When we debrief on what their favorite question was, it is usually about when they’ve experienced a moment of awe.  Such feelings of mystery and wonder cross the boundaries between faith traditions.

  • Over spring break, I answered a call from Jewish Community Action, a local social justice organization. They needed someone to testify before a Minnesota legislative committee, against a bill aimed to reopen a shuttered prison in Appleton MN.  I strongly believe that adding more prison beds is NOT a good solution to the woes of our state, so I agreed to go testify.

  • Crossing Paths

    18 December 2017

    Life around the chapel is bursting with spiritual, religious and learning opportunities; it’s like a colorful marketplace, where people of various faiths and ethnic backgrounds come not to sell but to share what is most precious to them. And we all grow.

    Take me and the Druid fellow with whom I recently connected at a study session….

  • In these divisive times, the world has deep need of people who uphold Carleton’s core aspirations: building a welcoming and inclusive community, while encouraging individual freedom of inquiry and expression.