Blogs 2018-02-27T02:59:51+00:00

Before Soul Teachers takes a summer break…

I’M ABOUT TO leave for vacation.   I'm working in my office — here in the Pacific Northwest — while in the bedroom next door my wife lies sleeping.  Out in the living room lie boxes, duffle bags, and coolers. We’re about to go on a one-month camping trip to Northern California, working our way more »

Norman Maclean:  “But we can still love them”

JESSIE: Why is it the people who need the most help ... won't take it? NORM: I don't know, Jess. I FIRST BEGAN writing about my family on HuffPost on October 25, 2007.   My first blogs were impassioned, enraged, self-righteous.  We all start there, I suppose. I had been sharing my fury with my more »

“Moonlight Sonata”: Learning to Be Still

I SUSPECT EACH of us is allotted a certain amount of transcendence; those moments when the veil is thin, when the Eternal offers her hand — gloved, sublime — and draws us up to observe the dance of the cosmos through the screen of heaven. I have had several of these moments.   ONE SUCH more »

Jane Hoyt-Oliver: The power of caring

I SIGNED UP for Janie's SOC 202 course unwillingly.   From the start, I was suspicious of the course title: Problems in Society.  The fact that it was a sociology course only made it worse.  I had grown up in an Amish-Mennonite world, and I believed anything to do with social work was suspect.   What more »

Bethany & Sharon: When a student schools the Master

IT’S HARD TO admit you’re wrong. It’s especially difficult when the person criticizing you — someone you’re sure knows far less than you — doesn’t merit your respect. Like an annoying high school student. Yet some of my most powerful lessons — and these were moments when my life transformed dramatically — have taken place more »

Sooki: “More than a pet lost”

This week, Steven Denlinger is leading his high school journalism team to NSPA’s Spring Convention in San Francisco.  In his place, senior editor Kara Fohner offers a Guest Column previously published in The Lenoir News-Topic. EVERY TIME I walk into my parents’ house, I glance around. For years, a small-boned Siamese cat with a round belly would be more »

Alice Aspen March: The right kind of attention

I'M IN THE middle of the Pennsylvania countryside, not far from Lancaster.  It’s July, and fields of bright green corn line the winding roads. My grandfather has finally died at the age of 96, and I’m driving to his funeral to honor him. I’m going to talk about him there, the massive impact he had more »

J.K. Rowling: The Penance of Snape

Spoiler alert:  If you have not yet read or viewed the Harry Potter series, I recommend that you do.  I reveal numerous plot twists in this blog. I FIRST ENCOUNTERED J.K. Rowling’s writing on a trip to Gettysburg, Pennsylvania.  I was chaperoning a group of yearbook students attending a journalism camp at a college campus more »

Dave Schlabach: The gift of grit

Dave Schlabach BECOMING A BRICKLAYER wasn’t a sure thing in my family.  When I reflect on my teen years, I’m surprised it ever happened. In fact, the only reason it happened is Dave Schlabach. Let me remind you of my size back then— just in case you don’t remember.  Just under five feet, more »

Walt Walker: How not to quit your job

I FIRST MET Walt Walker when I was a junior at Malone College in Canton, Ohio.  I was studying to be a teacher, and the requirements for an Ohio Teaching Certificate demanded I do ten weeks of student teaching. When I checked in at the front office of Hoover High School, principal Mr. Ted Isue more »