Grace Stewart's blog

Inspired by Love and Anger

Inspired by love and anger, disturbed by need and pain,

Informed of God's own bias, we ask him once again:

"How long must some folk suffer? How long can few folk mind?

How long dare vain self-interest turn prayer and pity blind?"

Julian, Jesus, and Motherhood

It was Mother’s Day in most countries other than the UK on Sunday (including the US, where I grew up), and I’ve been reading a lot of Julian of Norwich lately. So it seemed only natural to write about one of Julian’s most famous and unique theological concepts: Jesus as our divine mother.

Little Kindnesses with Dietrich Bonhoeffer and St Therese of Lisieux

I’m on something of a St Therese of Lisieux bender at the moment, and thinking about the Little Way and all its little acts of love. I’ve also been rereading Bonhoeffer’s Letters from Prison, my favourite of his writings.  

Finding the Divine in Moss

Do you remember the first time you noticed moss?

Prayer Adventure Week Six: The End

Well folks, my Lenten prayer adventure has come to an end. At least for now. During this time, I have cried a lot, learned a lot, and spent a lot of time on trains. I’ve learned that the rosary doesn’t work for me but the examen does, and that I am too Protestant for Marian devotion, but find a lot of inspiration in the lives of female saints.

Here follows a summary of my experiences and my final ratings!

The Examen:

Prayer Adventure Week Five: Holy Women and Wholly Saints Part 2

To read part one of this blog, click here.


Day Four—St Catherine of Siena

Prayer Adventure Week Four: Holy Women and Wholly Saints

This week, I am doing something a little different. We’re going on an adventure here, after all. I’ve spent some time this week reading about the lives of various female saints (and women who maybe should be saints), and I’ve realised that all of them have had quite difficult lives. They lived through wars, pandemics, physical and mental illness, and personal tragedy. So, this week I’m taking inspiration from the prayers of women who found God in difficulty and were often a bit difficult themselves. 

Prayer Adventure Week Three: A Little Bit of Liturgy

This whole project was inspired by reading God Loves the Autistic Mind. It’s a remarkable book by autistic Catholic priest Father Matthew P. Schneider that is part memoir, part theological exploration of autism, and part prayer guide.  The second half of the book is a series of devotionals centred around the autistic experience.

Prayer Adventure Week Two: Round and Round the Rosary

I’ve always had a fascination with the rosary. Growing up very Protestant (so Protestant I didn’t really know any practicing Catholics until I went to university), they always seemed like forbidden objects. I remember wanting one as a child and being told that they weren’t for people like me.

Prayer Adventure Week One: Have you tried Ignatian Spirituality?

It feels like every time I admit that I struggle with prayer in front of a Catholic, I get the same response.

‘Have you tried Ignatian spirituality? You should look into the Daily Examen.’

No, of course I haven’t. I’m Lutheran. Also, I hate praying, I don’t exactly want to do a thing designed to make prayer take a long time.