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The vaccine rollout is showing light at the end of the COVID tunnel. The 567,000 COVID deaths to date have irreparably altered the plans and dreams of innumerous families. Nothing can minimize that or magically wash away the pain and suffering. I see a rich tapestry of events and happenings …

At Prior Lake-Savage Area schools we transitioned our secondary students back to in-person learning on April 15 so now all students, E-12, have the opportunity to be back learning in our schools. We also continue to provide distance learning for families who choose that model.

A tuft of chives is suddenly thriving in the backyard garden along with crocus and the onset of daffodils. The snow, dare I say, is all but gone, lingering only in deeply shaded nooks. Spring seems to have arrived, though I hesitate to say it loudly. It is Minnesota, after all, and snow is n…

On the gate at the road of the family farm my father had crafted a sign from old wood that read “Consider the Lilies.” As a young adult who frequently visited the homestead, I assumed the sign’s intent was to inform all who drove through to not drive over the ditch lilies that anchored the gate.

When people tell me what they believe about themselves or circumstances in their life, I never doubt them. I have learned that whatever they believe is the absolute truth to them, knowing that if they think they can do something, they do. Unfortunately, the opposite is also true. If you do n…

Many years ago, my youngest son came home from school upset. His elementary school class had voted on which book they wanted to read next and they chose a book he’d already finished. He was disappointed, but he explained that it was fair because everybody had a vote, even the two kids who we…

This year we seemed to zip right past Groundhog Day without even noticing. Perhaps this is because during COVID time, every day seems the same, just like the movie "Groundhog Day." Nothing new or different. Just one day like the other. But for the groundhog, also known as the woodchuck, spri…

In the summer following my first year of seminary, I went to the University Hospital in Newark, New Jersey, for my Clinical Pastoral Education. For eleven weeks, I learned how to provide pastoral care to the sick and dying. Although that experience was over 25 years ago, it remains formative…

We say that we are a nation of immigrants. But immigration also elicits a lot of passion amongst us. I believe the current system is in disarray with its patchwork of policies and actions that don’t meet our needs. It does not reflect our values as a nation, nor is it in our best interest fo…

As winter loosens its grip on the northern states and it finally feels like spring, my mind turns to all the changes in nature. In particular, the animals in the northern climates that change the color of their coats (pelage) or the birds that change their feathers (plumage) from brown to wh…

The January/February edition of Smithsonian Magazine has a fascinating article about Joseph Hayne Rainey (“Meet Joseph Rainey, the first Black congressman,” Jan. 6). Rainey was the first African American to be seated in the United States House of Representatives and the first member of Congr…

In just a couple weeks, we will experience the vernal equinox — one of the two times in the year when the sun is exactly above the equator. Apart from this astronomical anomaly, though, the equinox is mostly known as the beginning of spring — a fresh beginning and the time to spruce things up.

Did you think that we would still be in the pandemic, one year later? I know I did not. In fact, I remember, sitting with my girlfriend last March, spaced six feet apart in my driveway as we remarked that if we had to do this for a couple of months, it would not be so bad. But here we are on…

The bison turned quickly, ready to charge. The two feet of snow didn’t slow its powerful hooves, but rather kicked up a rooster-tail of shiny ice crystals into the cold winter air, highlighting the bison’s efforts.

The bison turned quickly, ready to charge. The two feet of snow didn’t slow its powerful hooves, but rather kicked up a rooster-tail of shiny ice crystals into the cold winter air, highlighting the bison’s efforts.

For many of us, the COVID-19 pandemic may be putting a hold on dinner at the charming local bistro, but the spirit of Valentine’s Day cannot be extinguished. This year, perhaps more so than in the past, you may want to make your Valentine’s Day gifts even more meaningful. So, for example, wh…

I enjoy watching most sports, especially football. During college bowl game season and now as we head into Super Bowl Sunday, a variety of storylines dominate talk radio and sports news. Oftentimes what I find personally inspiring or motivating is not necessarily what’s grabbing the headlines.

The late Senator Daniel Patrick Moynihan famously said, “Everyone is entitled to his/her own opinion, but not his own facts,” a distinction that’s gets more difficult in direct proportion to the popularity and proliferation of social media.

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