Principally Speaking 1-24-20

It was a simple question. As they walked down the hall hand-in-hand in our school this week, little Zephan asked Ben, a visiting seminarian from Hungary, how Ben spelled his father’s name. Ben gently replied, “My father’s name is Tamás. He spells it T-a-m-á-s.” Then Ben asked the same question to Zephan, “How do you […]

PAUSE – Title Screen

Principally Speaking 1-16-20

Pastor John Ortberg was serving a large congregation in Chicago. He mentored with a friend and asked for some spiritual direction as he was dealing with the pace of life in his current ministry. His friend slowly replied, “Ruthlessly eliminate hurry from your life.” John Ortberg thanked him, told him he had written that down […]


Principally Speaking 1-10-20

As I begin my descent to retirement, I decided not to worry about repeating any story or quote that I may have used before in these musings called Principally Speaking. Perhaps I find myself repeating those things, those metaphors, that are my most precious guides to living life. Viktor Frankl is one of those precious guides […]


Principally Speaking 1-03-20

In my feeble attempt to convert Waverly, a predominantly German community, to a Norwegian community, we host a huge Norwegian party at Christmas called Lille Jul Aften, meaning Little Christmas Eve in Norwegian. It is a festive affair filled with Scandinavian foods and delicacies, singing, toasting, storytelling, and joke sharing. Our little condo is packed […]

A shepherd watching his sheep under the star of Bethlehem

Principally Speaking 12-20-19

It is said that Queen Marie Antoinette would disguise herself as a commoner and go from party to party in the villages to learn how the people truly lived. However, she was never able to get away with her disguise, they always figured out who she was. Do you know why? Because she “walked like […]


Principally Speaking 12-13-19

Recently I watched the 25th anniversary (aired in 2010 on PBS) of Les Miserable in concert. This musical is truly one of our family’s most treasured experiences after seeing the Broadway production. We loved the music, the message, the performance! As I immersed myself again in the power of the music and the story, there […]


Principally Speaking 12-06-19

One Christmas years ago, I gave my father a book for called, Tell Me Your Memories Grandpa. There was a page for each day of the year with a question that he was to answer which then painted a picture of his life. He faithfully put it by his breakfast table and wrote an answer to the […]


Principally Speaking 11-22-19

There is a YouTube video that shows a mama bear and her cub trying to make it up a steep snowy mountain. The mama quite easily makes it to the top, but the baby following her almost gets there…and then slips down, down, down. It immediately tries again, only to get close and then slips, […]

An open bible with grass and a man walking towards a cross

Principally Speaking 11-15-19

This week I received a warm note from Pastor Schneider, former pastor here at St. Paul’s Lutheran Church and School. He was so affirming to me by his sadness at the announcement of my retirement, just as so many of you have been by your kind words…I do not know how to thank you all! […]


Principally Speaking 11-08-19

The year before my dad died, out of the blue, he would often say to us, “Have you ever heard this one? ‘The time has come,’ the Walrus said, ‘To talk of many things: Of shoes – and ships – and sealing-wax – Of cabbages — and kings —’” As a family, we really did not know […]