Bless to Me Worship Series

I’m so excited! My book was the inspiration for a 7-week worship series available from my friend, Marcia McFee and the Worship Design Studio.

If you are a pastor or worship leader, I hope you’ll consider the “Bless to Me” series for your church or faith community. The series is offered as a part of a “worship design starter kit” from Worship Design Studio. Or if you are already a subscriber to Worship Design Studio, the series is included as a part of your subscription.

“Take a virtual pilgrimage to Ireland this summer with new Worship Design Studio series ‘Bless to Me,’ a joyful exploration of what it means to see blessings in the world around us every day inspired by Beth A. Richardson’s Celtic Blessing poems.” From the “Bless to Me” landing page.

Thanks, Marcia. I’m grateful!


Photo © Beth A. Richardson. Pastoral scene near Taychreggan Inn, Argyll, Scotland. More photos from the Scotland trip.

Premier of “Requiem of Remembrance”

Some of you remember the prayer I wrote called “Some Days Are Very Hard.” I wrote it after a Facebook friend posted a response to one of Jack’s funny posts. She said that she appreciated Jack’s humor because “some days are very hard.” That phrase worked on me until it became the prayer that I wrote and which was included in my book.

I shared that prayer with a choir from Los Altos United Methodist Church in Los Altos, California. At the end of the retreat, T. Paul Rosas, the senior organist for the church, asked if he could use the words in a requiem that he was writing to commemorate the lives of family and friends.

He has completed the first segment of the requiem and it will premier tonight at the church’s Maundy Thursday service at 7:30 PDT.

[Update: 9:20 a.m.] [Update #2 — corrected times: 1:45 p.m.] The service will be live streamed from the church’s website. Tune in at 10:30 pm ET, 9:30 CT, and 8:30 MT 7:30 pm Pacific time. But even if you cannot watch, think and pray about the events of this day and of the premier of this beautiful musical piece “”#4 Dies Irae (Some Days Are Very Hard) by T. Paul Rosas. Thank you, Paul and Los Altos United Methodist Church. I’m deeply honored.

Here’s a video of the prayer that I recorded at Iona last year.

Hello, Sky

I step outside the airport
And greet the Oklahoma sky.
Hello, sky. It’s been a long time
Since I stood under you
And marveled at your vastness.

The wind is blowing, blowing, blowing.
The trees grow, pointing north.
Hello, wind. It’s been a long time
Since I felt your scouring power,
Your constant presence.

I drive to my lodging
And catch glimpses of the red clay.
Hello, red clay. It’s been a long time
Since I touched you,
Ground of my birth.

I am here. I am home.
My body, my cells,
My spirit remembers.


Friends in the Oklahoma area, I’d love to see you.

Friday, March 24, 7:00 p.m.
St. Stephen’s United Methodist Church, Norman, OK. I’ll be speaking about my book of Celtic-style blessings and reflecting on my own Celtic roots. For more information, contact ststephensumc@coxinet.net.

Saturday, March 25, 9:00 a.m. – 1:30 p.m.
St. Stephen’s United Methodist Church, Norman, OK. Workshop on “Spiritual Tools for Survival.” For more information, or to register ($10 for lunch), contact ststephensumc@coxinet.net.

Sunday, March 26, 8:30 and 10:50 a.m.
St. Stephen’s United Methodist Church, Norman, OK. Preaching and joining in worship. For more information, contact ststephensumc@coxinet.net.

Tuesday, March 28, 2:00 – 4:00 p.m.
Oklahoma City University. Gathering with area clergy for a time of listening. Contact me if you want more information.

Wednesday, March 29, 6:00 p.m.
Mosaic United Methodist Church, Oklahoma City, North campus. Preaching and leading worship for “Space for Grace” chapel service. A lite supper is served at 5:15 p.m. For more information, contact Mosaic at 405-751-0766.

Thursday, March 30, 3:00 -5:00 p.m.
St. Paul’s United Methodist Church, Tulsa, OK. Gathering with clergy from the Tulsa area for a time of listening. Contact me if you want more information.

Saturday, April 1, 2:00 – 4:30 p.m.
Mosaic United Methodist Church, Oklahoma City, OK. A workshop on Celtic spirituality. For more information, contact Mosaic at 405-751-0766.

Sunday, April 2, 10:30 a.m.
Mosaic United Methodist Church, Bishop Angie Smith Chapel on the campus of Oklahoma City University. Preaching and join in worship. For more information, contact Mosaic at 405-751-0766.

Seeds of Hope

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It’s not fair of me
To tell you (or anyone)
How to feel.
We all must find our own ways
Through these days.

But let me share that
This morning,
Seeds of hope were planted in me.

In The Upper Room chapel
Where a Shawnee man
(Talk about the long view)
Called me back to the Circle
That begins and ends with the Creator.
The Circle that always contains hope.

In a reception with six people
From a L’Arche community
Where I witnessed selfless love,
Where I sensed a larger perspective
Than the tunnel vision in my brain,
And where I saw God’s beloved gifts.
There I met one who told me
What day of the week I was born on
When I shared with him my date of birth.

May these seeds of hope be nurtured,
Taking hold, sprouting, and growing.

Shawnee Traveling Song

I am walking upon the earth
with people who love me
on the circle of Creator
I will always be home
I will always be loved.
I will be with Creator.

– Fred A. Shaw / Neeake
© 1987 Fred Shaw / Neeake, Shawnee Nation United Remnant Band

Sunrise

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I watch the sky this morning
Wondering what the sunrise will bring.
A hint of pink
And then, gone.
Oh, so you will tease me
This day.

From the kitchen window
I see a splash of color.
Rosy clouds floating beyond the trees.
Your beauty is such a mystery to me.

In the car, on the way to work,
I have nearly forgotten you.
And then I see in my rearview mirror
A glow, a brilliant gold ball
Shining through clouds above the horizon.
Ahead of me, in the west, the pink returns
And then clouds fill with dazzling white light.

Sunrise, you remind me
That each new day is a mystery, a gift.
May I never forget to see you.
May I never forget to watch for you
With wondering, awestruck eyes.