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Are you restless or hungry for more in your life? Are you seeking wisdom or looking for inspiration? The gospel gave guidance to Saints Francis and Clare of Assisi as they followed the footprints of Jesus some 800 years ago. The witness of their lives and values continue to inspire those of us on a spiritual journey today. Join Sister Michelle L’Allier and her guests for a time of shared reflection and conversation.

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Dec 15, 2022

Join Jamie Deering as she shares stories and considers with curiosity what it is to be present to oneself and others as we allow God to flow through us in the midst of different ways of thinking, seeing and being in the world.

For a video version of this episode, see:


From Jamie’s interview:

“One of the first and primary ways that God grabbed a hold of me and that I knew the presence of God in me and in the world, was through music. When I was four years old, I began piano lessons and when I was in elementary school, there was a choir and I was so excited to be part of this, creating music with our bodies and with our souls, which has felt to me like a special portal, a special pathway to God. … The thread of music through my entire life is what has anchored me in knowing and experiencing God's presence.”


“It was so important for me as my kids were growing up to be sure that they had this experience of the diversity of humankind and the diversity of thought and movement and ideas. … It was such a blessing and gift to be exposed to different ways of thinking, different ways of being in the world. I served in the Peace Corps, as you know, and lived in Macedonia for a little under two years. That plus my experiences in a variety of churches throughout my formative spiritual formation years was understanding the power of a community to form, to be so influential, in how our worldview, I'll stick with me, how my worldview was formed.”


“Recently a friend of mine distinguished for me this word, interdependence, and we've been having conversations. We come from different cultures and so I've been curious about, again, the formation of this person coming, growing up in a different culture. And my growing up in the American culture, in sort of a spirit of independence; this other culture was a spirit of interdependence. I've been learning more about what that is and connecting that to all the experiences that I've had; they have been helpful in pointing me to what it means to be interdependent and communal in thinking.”


“There are some things in contemplation we can do to set down striving; this concept of being with our thoughts then gets integrated in somatic presence with being in our bodies, being in my body. What is my body experiencing right now? Because our bodies live in present time. And so to the degree that I can be in my body, I can be present in present time. So there's that sense of being with. Then in spiritual direction, being with another, companioning another. Again, it's so important for me to be able to know what it is that's going on in me, physically, emotionally, mentally, spiritually, so that I can hold space. So I can offer that space to another person for them to be with whatever is going on in them.”


Haecceitas … this notion that we are all uniquely gifted by God for work here on earth for God. Presence in God through us, manifesting God through us in the world. I feel this mysterious, mystical, and special gift that my gifts now are partnered so beautifully with the Franciscan Sisters, and what might God be bringing into the world through us.”


“There’s an expression in contemplative prayer of the wellspring of love, the wellspring of God; that is probably the primary image that I use when I'm leading contemplation, because the wellspring is always available to us. Always. We just sit by the wellspring, contemplating the wellspring, being with the wellspring of love.”


“Living life from a place of curiosity - I find that to be very Franciscan. And expanding beyond that, the spiritual journey, to live from curiosity. To be listeners seeking to understand another, is also very Franciscan, rather than be understood. …The wellspring cultivates curiosity and the ability to be with another and hold space for another's essence, to see another in their essence.”


For a full transcript, please include episode number and email:



Saint Francis, The Praises of God:


Peace Corps, Macedonia:


Contemplative Practice: see Shalem Institute for Spiritual Formation:


Spiritual Direction and Spiritual Coaching: see Jamie’s website:


Haecceitas: a Franciscan term coined by John Duns Scotus re: the unique value, dignity, ‘thisness’, of every person and everything; two references: , and  


Franciscan Sisters of Little Falls, Minnesota:

Franciscan Programs Ministry, including Engaging Franciscan Spirituality course:


Third Order Regular Rule, reference to admonishing with compassion:

  1. If discord caused by word or deed should occur among them, they should immediately (Mt. 18:35) and humbly ask forgiveness of one another even before offering their gift of prayer before the Lord (cf. Mt 5:24).And if anyone seriously neglects the form of life all profess, the minister, or others who may know of it, are to admonish that person. Those giving the admonition should neither embarrass nor speak evil of the other, but show great kindness. Let all be careful of self-righteousness, which causes anger and annoyance because of another's sin. These in oneself or in another hinder living lovingly.


Sheffield train station fountain in England, image of the Trinity as fountain fullness of God; see photo below, see a YouTube of the fountain: