Mar 2nd to Mar 5th: Welcome and Introductions

Reading: Preface, p. vii to viii

In the course of writing I became aware that I was engaged. . .
in rediscovering Jesus and the meaning of my
existence for myself. —Henri Nouwen

As we enter this season of prayer, fasting, and almsgiving in preparation for Easter, we welcome you to the Henri Nouwen Society 2022 Lent book discussion. If you have joined us for previous book discussions, welcome back. And if you are here for the first time, thank you for joining our vibrant and spirit-filled community as we share a fruitful and enlightening discussion on our Lenten journey.

For many Christians, Lent is a season of reflection and conversion when our heart and minds are turned to Christ as we seek to follow in the footsteps of Jesus more faithfully. Our book selection, Letters to Marc About Jesus—Living a Spiritual Life in a Material Word, will inspire, challenge, and encourage us to encounter Jesus, just it did for Henri (see quote above and Preface) when he wrote these letters, primarily during Lent 1986.

Henri was in the midst of a major life transition when he composed these letters to his 19-year old nephew, with the mutual understanding they were intended to be published. In the spring of 1985 he had resigned from his teaching post at the Harvard Divinity School and Henri spent most of the next year living in the L’Arche community in Trosly, France. He was discerning whether he was called to live in community with and to minister to the severely handicapped core members at L’Arche and their assistants. Interestingly, during Lent 1985, just prior to resigning from Harvard, Henri had presented a series of talks at St. Paul Church in Cambridge, Massachusetts that also focused on Jesus. These talks were published for the first time in 2019 as Following Jesus—Finding Our Way Home in an Age of Anxiety. In hindsight, it seems clear that during this time of turmoil and transition, Henri’s heart and mind had turned in a particular and deeply fruitful way to Jesus—and we are blessed to be able to harvest that fruit this Lent. As we will see in Letter VII, by September 1986 Henri had followed Jesus’ call to his new home at L’Arche Daybreak, just north of Toronto, where he lived until his unexpected death ten years later.

Our discussion begins in earnest on the March 6th, the First Sunday of Lent. If you are joining us for the first time or if you would like a refresher, the instructions for our online book discussion are provided below my brief biography.

As we begin our journey together, it’s always nice to know something about our companions. Over the next few days you are encouraged to introduce yourself. You may choose to share:

  • Your general geographic location.
  • To whom or what you dedicate your days or energy, and why.
  • How you came to know and read Henri Nouwen and whether or not you have participated in previous Henri Nouwen Society online discussions.
  • What you hope to gain from this experience.

I’m looking forward sharing a spirit-filled Lenten season with this online community of seekers as we gather together to to discuss Letters to Marc About Jesus by Henri Nouwen. Please scroll to the bottom to post a comment.

In gratitude,

Ray Glennon: Ray and his wife Dawn live in Columbia, Maryland. He came to know and trust Henri’s written word in a special way in 2004 when he discovered The Return of the Prodigal Son for sale after Mass in Singapore at a difficult and transformative point in his life. He began participating in Henri Nouwen Society book discussions in 2010 and has served as a moderator since 2014. He developed and led a six-week adult education course on “Henri Nouwen and A Spirituality of Living.” Ray will present a new adult education course, “Nouwen’s The Return of the Prodigal Son: The Story and Backstory” later this spring. Ray and his wife are professed members of Secular Franciscan Order (OFS) and he volunteers in his parish Confirmation program and other ministries. You may contact Ray by email at and you can follow him on Twitter.

Henri Nouwen Society Online Book Discussion Instructions
Let’s briefly describe how our online book discussion works. If you’ve joined us before, this will serve as a review.

Beginning this Sunday, March 6th, and each Sunday throughout Lent, a new entry or post will be added to the book discussion (the blog) home page. The post will identify the reading for the week, present a brief moderator’s reflection, and suggest some questions for discussion. Participants are invited and encouraged to comment on the post by responding to the suggested questions, by sharing their own reflections, and by replying to the comments of others throughout the week.

To read the comments or to leave a comment of your own, scroll down to the bottom of the post.  If you don’t see any comments, click on the small link at the bottom that says
## Comments.  To leave a new comment, continue scrolling down and use the “Leave a Reply” box.  To reply to someone else’s comment, click the Reply link directly below their comment. After you submit a new comment or a reply, it needs to be “approved” either by me or Will at the Nouwen Society so it may take a few hours before it actually appears on the blog page. If you have any questions or problems, please do not hesitate to contact me by email at

85 Replies to “Mar 2nd to Mar 5th: Welcome and Introductions”

  1. Hello! My name is Sue. I am a full time UCC Interim Minister in Massachusetts. I was introduced to Henri in college and have found his writings to be wonderful. IN recent years I have been expanding my spiritual practices and reading Nouwen again has been a real treat. This is my first time in a book study. I hope I can keep up. There seem to be so many students of Henri here. I look forward to learning and diving in when I can.

  2. Hello-
    My name is Sharon and I am currently living in the north Georgia mountains, USA. I am retired from the USN and spend my days with my husband and my young, fully energetic dog, whom we walk frequently. We coordinate the care and household of my 97 year-old mother-in-law, who still lives in her house of 55 years.
    Henri Nouwen’s works were recommended to me after the death of my son in 2017. I found the book of his letter, Love, Henri, very helpful. I probably have already read some of his letters to Marc! This is the first time I have participated in a Henri Nouwen online discussion group.

    As I mentioned above, I found the book Love, Henri, so helpful. He used letters as a key part of his ministry. I am looking forward to studying this book.

    What you hope to gain from this experience.

  3. Michele S. Living in Cape Coral, FL. Retired for four years. Fortunate to have spent time with my mom before her passing last Fall. Been spending time relaxing, reading and getting needed self-care. I was introduced to Father Nouwen a wonderful friend, an older, wise woman. She shared an article written by Father entitled Beloved. I have shared it with many and reread it often. This will be my first time reading one of his authored books. I’m sure it will be perfect for Lent.

  4. Hello. My name is Teresa. I am an American citizen living in Liverpool, England since 1998. In my life, I’ve been an office worker, print shop manager, and a writer of everything. Currently, I am on permanent vacation (that’s what I call retirement), and enjoying spending my time taking art classes, piano lessons, and volunteering with a type of Christian counselling organisation. A friend sent me the book to engage with other Christians at this most-difficult time for me as I have fallen out with my church. I’ve never heard of Henri, but I do love a good, healthy book review discussion. Looking forward to it!

    1. Welcome Teresa. If you would like to learn a little more about Henri, you can visit the Henri Nouwen Society website at If you click on the About link at the top of the page you will find more information. Henri wrote over 40 books virtually all of which are still in print, the most popular of which is the spiritual classic, The Return of the Prodigal Son: A Story of Homecoming.

      We look forward to your participation.

  5. I’m from South East Queensland, Australia. I belong to a Third order whose charism is devoted to the love of Jesus seen on the cross, so my days are devoted to living this out as I can no longer work due to illness. I became interested in Henri’s work when I became a Hospital Chaplain and I meditate on his reflections everyday. I look forward to walking more closely with Jesus.

  6. My name is BillE and I live in North Carolina. I have been a long time reader of the daily Henry Nouwen’s daily mediations and received an invite to join this lent series. Being in the Cusillo group here in North Carolina, I felt I needed to add to my Lenten journey some form of scripture reading and I chose the “Letters to Marc about Jesus” would be interesting journey.

  7. I’m Barbara from Ohio. New to Henri but drawn to this book telling me more about how to get closer to Jesus.

  8. Hello everyone,
    I am Katharine from Peekskill-Cortlandt area of New York. I noted the Beacon address which compelled me to join in. Somehow in all my spirituality googling, I happened upon Henri Nouwen. I quickly subscribed to the Nouwen Society daily meditations and enjoy each one. His insights resonate with me because he offers a psychological understanding with his theology. I read Henri to be uplifted and comforted in my despair. I am beset with fatigue and need powerful voices to nudge me into action. I am a graduate student in the University’s Graduate School of Religion’s History of Christianity Advanced Certificate program. I am a married, retired, and new grandmother. I am connected to the Maryknoll Family. I am converting to Catholicism through a local parish, inspired by the Maryknoll Sisters and Missioners, Pope Francis Richard Rohr. I need Henri as a guide and companion on this journey.

  9. Hi my name is Mark and I live in Charlottesville, VA and work at the University of Virginia. Henri Nouwen has been a wonderful presence in our family through his writings, most especially for our daughter Jane who was profoundly affected by The Inner Voice of Love. She discovered it during a severe depressive episode and looks back on it as a key factor in her recovery. We are eternally grateful for his gentle, loving influence in her life and since then in all of ours! Looking forward to these weeks together.

  10. Hi! I’m Marsha and I live in the northeastern part of Louisiana. I’ve been in the midst of a long and difficult dry spell and decided to turn to one of Henri’s writings to help me dig my way out. Nouwen’s books have had a great impact on my life, particularly “Can You Drink The Cup?” and “The Return of the Prodigal Son”. This study called to me in a way that makes me feel like I can reconnect spiritually. I’ve participated here before and appreciate this offering! Thank you!

  11. Hello! My name is Jenn and I live in Morrison, Colorado. I love the outdoors, am mom to a 5.5 yo and newborn, and have participated in a couple of Lenten journeys with this community in the past. I look forward to learning and growing with you all.

  12. My name is Cheryl and I live in Washington State with my husband and cat. I listen to Nouwen’s daily meditations and first knew of him when I read The Wounded Healer. The book touched me in a special way because I was dealing with the onset of a chronic medical condition while training for grief ministry. I’m looking forward to this experience.

  13. My name is Diana and I’m a retired deacon living in Vermont. I’ve read various Nouwen books off and on throughout my life and always find a nugget to digest. I’m looking forward to reading and sharing over the next few weeks of Lent.

  14. Nadia, My heart is breaking over what is happening to the Ukranian people. Never did I think that something so horrifying could happen in the 21st century. I am praying for a miracle for all of those who cannot leave. Please God ,intervene.
    I rejoice with you that you mother has been saved.

  15. Hello. I am Deacon Chris Amantea. I participated in one other Henri Nouwen Book discussion, but did not join the online community. So, I am looking forward to being with you all during this 2022 Lenten journey. I am a Deacon at American Martyrs Catholic Church in Manhattan Beach, CA. I was ordained 10 years ago and my wife and I facilitate our funeral planning and bereavement ministries at our Parish, in addition to participating in other ministries in which we are active. The Henri Nouwen Daily Meditations have been a great spiritual blessing for me…so, it is a blessing to be with you all in this online community during this Lenten Season.

  16. I’m Rodney from Central TX. I’ve been enjoying the writings of Henri Nouwen for many years. My reading journey began with “The Return of the Prodigal Son” which had a huge impact and transformation in my life. I’ve also enjoyed several other book discussions.

  17. Hello, my name is Delia. I live in Hawthorn Woods, Illinois. I recently was introduced to Henri Nouwen through a small group member. She has often shared with our group the daily reflection. I finally searched for it and joined in receiving the daily reflection. I have not participated in a book discussion. I look forward to see how the letters to Marc unfold.

  18. I’m Barbara and I live in the in the south east of the UK – in the middle of Surrey. After 15 years of teaching and 10 years as a Grief Support Worker to bereaved children and their families, I’m now retired and doing a Masters at Spurgeon’s College on Christian Thought and Practice. I’m writing a dissertation on Vulnerability. My question is ‘The Unmasked Disciple: To what extent could the church embrace vulnerability and open the way to genuine connection and empathy?’
    Henri Nouwen makes a key pastoral contribution and ‘The Wounded Healer’ invites us to live authentically, using our own struggles for the benefit of others. ‘In the Name of Jesus’ demonstrates his awareness that leadership needs to model vulnerability. His own life is an example of vulnerability and I hope to understand him better and learn even more from him in reading ‘Letters to Marc.’

  19. Hello my dear friends, my name is Nadiia which in Ukrainian means HOPE & that is exactly what my home country desperately needs right now! My husband & I reside in California & just today, my mom was able to cross the Hungarian border after 5 days of intense travel on the road & sleepless nights. We started her evacuation one hour after a huge explosion that happened in the down town of our home city, Kharkiv, where I lived for almost 40ty years & my mom lived for more than 60 years. She was given one hour to pack her belongings & leave. Now, that she is safe, I can join this online discussion. It’s my 3rd one & I read even more books by Henri – it seems to me that he became my very good friend & mentor! I look forward to this time as my husband & I work on the ways to bring our parents over here & help other family & friends to get out of the hell of this century. Please pray for Ukraine & for us as the situation is horrifying & the need is enormous!
    Nadiia – Hope

    1. Hi Nadia. So very glad you’re mom got out! I have been praying and will continue to pray for Ukraine and now your family and friends as well.

    2. Nadia, Thank you for sharing your timely and heartwrenching story. I am praying for Ukraine, President Zelensky and your dear mom. I also have a soon to be son-in-law Vadim, whose family members fled to Poland. I’m with you too experiencing Henri as both a friend and guide. And I know that in this study we will receive strength, insight and bread for the journey following Jesus in such a serious time.


    3. Nadiiia,

      It is hard to imagine what you and your loved ones are going through. I lift your mother, you, your family, and the people of Ukraine up in prayer now.

    4. Nadia, I am sending prayers for your family in particular and for all citizens of Ukraine. In your mercy Lord, hear our prayers for the safety and well-being of all those at risk from this inhumane and unnecessary act of aggression by an evil and power hungry leader. Amen

  20. Hi from Jim Willis in Barrie, Ontario.
    First discovered Henri through his book ‘The Prodigal Son’
    Been receiving daily emails for a while.
    I love to read a physical book.

  21. Hi, I am Bev currently living in Louisville with my dog Marten. I am bivocational: both a UCC Congregational minister from New England and a psychotherapist currently practicing in Louisville, KY.

    I’ve been participating in the Henri Nouwen Online Discussions since 2015; and first read Henri in seminary in 1998. Both his “Wounded Healer” and “Living Reminder” became constant mentors for me in ministry. Coninuing to read his books, learn more about his life and soak up his legacy, Henri has become a patron saint who has deeply shaped my spirituality and forged my faith to follow Jesus.

  22. Hello from Florida. My name is Tere. I work for a large technology firm. I’ve been with the same company for over 30 years and served in many different roles. It is a career that has put 3 children through college with one left to go. It has afford us with many comforts. I work to incorporate my spiritual life into my corporate life. I came to know Henri Nouwen years ago. I have enjoyed many of his books – two of my favorites being Life of the Beloved and Sabbatical Journey. I have never participated in an online discussion about one of his books before and am looking forward to this Lenten experience with you.

  23. Hi. I’m MaryEllen from Medford Massachusetts, married, retired, and joyfully a new Grandmom. I was introduced to Henri’s writing by a friend who loved the Prodigal Son. I wanted to try something different for Lent this year and I love to read. Looking forward to sharing with you all.

  24. Hello! My name is Brian. I am in Calgary, Alberta, retired from the real estate brokerage and publishing industries. I have four children, eleven grandchildren and twelve great- grandchildren. Many of these are in Calgary, so my daily activities include being a friend to them and watching them grow. Since I am mobility and health restricted, much of my social life is Zoom related. I was introduced to Henri Nouwen many years ago through my interest in Jean Vanier and L’Arche. I waver between my Catholic belief and doubt, seeking answers to existential questions and new insights. This will be my first participation in a book discussion. I look forward to sharing my experience and learning from the contributions of others.

  25. I don’t see anyone else from New York. I am Suellen. I live in Beacon, New York. I am retired and 73. I volunteer at Hospice, my local driveby Food Pantry, at the Episcopal Benedictine monastery I am a lay member of and with two charity crocheting groups. My brother introduced me to Henri many years ago when I had months of pain after major back surgery. I have often read the books being discussed but have never commented. I look forward to reading “another” book by Henri.

    1. Hi, Suellen! I will start some community building, here. We have the same last name, so that can be a starting connection. My family and I spent some time in Western NY during a couple of summers (its been a few years). I looked up Beacon–I see you are on the other side of the state. Looks like a beautiful place! I look forward to your comments as well as those of others!

  26. Hello. My name is Dawn. I am retired and live with my husband and cat in northern Nevada. I was introduced to Henri Nouwen years ago by my Methodist minister in Arkansas. Recently, my spiritual director in Nevada re-introduced me to Henri Nouwen and I have incorporated his daily email meditations into my quiet time. I have bought, but never got around to reading, several of his books. Currently, I am searching for the reason and meaning of Jesus to replace my previous belief of ‘atonement.’ This book sounds like it will give me a wider perspective. I look forward to reading what Henri Nouwen had to say to Marc as well as what others post. This is my first online discussion.

  27. I’m Sherieta from south-central Texas. The honoring of Henri’s writing began when I began training with a hospital chaplain. This chaplain was a colleague of Henri’s and introduced me to the depths of Henri’s wisdom and spiritual beauty through several of his writings. The most memorable for that time was The Wounded Healer. I continue to cherish Henri’s legacy which continues to live by guiding me in ministry through reminders of Christ in us; the need to face and accept loneliness, hospitality and recognizing our belovedness in Christ’s heart.
    I hope to gain a deeper understanding of Henri and accept a transformation in this Lenten season from your stories and reflections. I also seek to find a community of like minded students of Christ through Henri.

  28. Hi! My name is Dana and I’m a retired teacher and other things. Was in last book discussion group and my joy was not only reading Nouwen’s thoughts but but reading the reflections of others in the group. Their comments were so insightful and personal. It was just such an uplifting experience and the feelings of connection with others was awesome.

  29. Hello. My name is Neil. I first encountered Henri’s writing’s via his daily emails the last couple of years. I live in San Diego, CA with my wife. Sabbatical Journey (about a year or so ago) was my first book discussion group I participated in. Both the book and the group discussion were a great experience. I am looking forward to this discussion group as well. Ray is a great facilitator. Thank you Ray.

  30. Hello all, My name is Sherman and I live with my wife and rescue Dog (Winston) in Cleveland, OH. I am a retired pastor (ELCA) and like some others have mentioned above, have now lived for 2+ years with a cancer diagnosis. I joined my first study group led by Ray during Lent in 2020, and have participated in every study held since. All have brought insight and appreciation for Henri and those who read him today. I was given my first Nouwen work my first year in Seminary (“The Wounded Healer”) and not long after had a serendipitous opportunity to meet him while visiting a friend. Spent part of an evening together talking about jazz and Van Gough. Wonderful memories. I look forward to another insightful and spiritually rich Lenten season.

  31. Hello, I am Ineke from Crowsnest Pass, Alberta . I love reading Henri Nouwen and did one book discussion before. Read some of his books in Dutch(my mother tongue) and like to hear Henry speaking, his accent is so familiar to me. Looking forward to take part in this discussion.

  32. Hello, I’m Sharon from Michigan. My first time reading Henri Nouwen’s books was 15 or so years ago in a Stephens Ministry training class at church—The Wounded Healer. The wisdom and insights Henri Nouwen gives made me a much better equipped Stephens Minister in helping care receivers as I have had to deal with my own woundedness and learn how to help and not hurt others. I’ve participated in several book readings and anticipate this one will be very beneficial and strengthening too.

  33. Hello! My name is Julie and I’m from Michigan. I’m an ordained minister with the Community of Christ denomination and have served as the Church Planter in the Brightmoor neighborhood in northwest Detroit. My exposure to Henri came through a number of good Catholic friends with Voices for Earth Justice there. I have been reading Henri’s daily meditation since 2015. This is my first time participating in the Lenten discussion. I look forward to growing in God through the Ray’s questions and your responses.

    1. Hello, I am Steven. I live in St. Louis with my wife and 2 sons. I have been a church goer all my life, and experienced a desire for a deeper relationship with Christianity after attending an ACTS retreat through the local Catholic Church. Shortly thereafter, I picked up a couple of Henri’s books while at a bookstore. His writings along with Richard Rohr’s have been foundational to learning about meaningful spirituality.

  34. I am Kris from Pennsylvania. I was introduced to Henry while was living in Alaska. Such a wonderful blessing through a very dark time in my life.

  35. Hello all!
    My name is Tim. I am a university faculty member, husband, and father of one (in college). I live in Tennessee–not too far from Nashville. I have been reading Henri’s works since college. I lived in a ministry house near the Earlham College campus. Henri was possibly the favorite spiritual guide of the recorded friends minister who hosted this ministry. In any event, here I am 25 years later still growing in faith and thankful to have Henri’s words and your fellowship!

  36. Hello, I’m Jan and I live in Coastal Connecticut. I’m a retired teacher. I belong to a Presbyterian church. My pastors often quote Henri Nouwen which inspired me to subscribe to and read his daily meditations for the past few years. This will be my first Lenten study. I have a shoulder replacement scheduled before Easter but will join in as long as I’m able.

  37. As to the preface, it looks like Henri’s love for his nephew and his people really inspired some great writing for God! I can’t wait to read more!

  38. Good Evening,

    My name is Maria and I live in Florida. This is the first book I have read from Henri Nouwen and have been extremely blessed by it. I am new to the book discussion forum and looking forward to the many perspectives, thoughts and comments this book will bring.

    God Bless

  39. My name is Beth. I live in Reno with my husband and Papillon puppy. I have been reading the email meditations every day since 2013 and they never fail to inspire and comfort me. I am currently in training to be a spiritual director and we read “The Return of the Prodigal Son” as part of our training. I have picked Henri Nouwen as my spiritual mentor. I have never attended an online book discussion and look forward to this journey.

  40. My name is Rick. I live with my wife in Eastern Nebraska. We have two grown children, a daughter who lives in Central Iowa and a son who lives in Dallas Texas. I am a Deacon in the ELCA Lutheran Church. I am also a spiritual director and have lead groups in spiritual direction in retreats and individuals as a spiritual guide. I have read several of Henri Nouwen’s works including “The Wounded Healer” and “The Return of the Prodigal Son” I have participated in these online groups before and was glad to have this chance for another doing it during Lent. My time is spent as “Director of FirstCare” at the worship center where I am employed. I do pastoral care for people in facilities and during hospital stays. I also get involved in fellowship events and study groups and thought I might use this for a future study group. I am looking for a great time for discussion during this Lenten season. I am closing in on retirement and discerning what I might do in the next stage of life in retirement.

  41. Hello Everyone,

    I am Suzanne from central Pennsylvania. I’ve read a number of books by Nouwen over the years and almost always have found him to be an inspiring and enlightening companion on the journey, one who has helped me to move closer to Christ during some particularly difficult times. I’ve participated in two previous book discussions and am delighted to be joining you all again.

  42. Hello again, I am Connie from Washington State. I divide my time between work in guest service and caring for my mother because I really enjoy being of service and feel blessed to have this time with my mother. I first came to Henri through his writing in Compassion. This is my 4th online book discussion.

  43. Hello to everyone!
    My name is Janet Edwards and I live near Asheville, NC. I am a member of an Episcopal Church and have been a reader of Henri Nouwen’s works for many years. They have been so spiritually nurturing to me and like Henri I need to be reminded that I am God’s beloved child, as are all,of us.
    I am a retired kindergarten teacher and my husband and I have a grown son and daughter and three young grandchildren.
    I have participated in several online book discussions before and am looking forward to going on this journey with all of you.

  44. I am Jamie from Virginia. Delighted to meet everyone and to be here. When I was going through an emotional breakdown thirty years ago, someone, as comfort, passed along a quote from Henri Nouwen’s “The Life of the Beloved.” I went out as soon as I could and bought that book. Nouwen’s writing was a key to my recovery.

    His writings have continued to shed light on my path. As I was looking for Nouwen’s writings on Lent, I discovered this reading group. I then found a copy of the book, unread, on my Nouwen shelf and decided that this was a sign to commit.

  45. Hi everybody
    I´m really happy to be here, this is my first time. I live in Puebla , Mexico ( so sorry for my english mistakes) but really happy to get involved more in Henri Nouwen´s teachings….I was really caught when the book “the return of the prodigal son” came into my hands, and now I´m going to make my doctoral thesis about him, so I want to get really “soaked” with his books, thinkings , reflections. This spiritual teacher has still a lot to contribute all around the world ! Greetings and may God lightens us this lent.

    1. Wonderful to connect with you! I’m writing a dissertation for my Masters on Vulnerability – clearly Henri Nouwen’s books play a significant part so we have something in common! I’ll explain a bit more in my own introduction of myself which I’ll do this afternoon when I’ve read everyone else’s.

      1. Great Barbara!! We will be in touch , sharing Nouwen´s philosophy can be a great experience in personal and academic field!! We can be in touch !

  46. My name is Neal, and I live just outside Vancouver, BC. I spend my energy helping people immigrate to Canada. Years ago, I received the book In the Name of Jesus, which started my intro to Henri. My Christianity is only in my head, and I desire to enter into a personal relationship. Right now, there is an emptiness that I have been trying to fill through so many other avenues that I know only Jesus can fill.

    1. Hi Neal, I lived in BC for many years but now live in New Westminster. Henry Nouwen life and writings are a great inspiration to me. I was an immigrant from Indonesia. I was part of a community helping refugees in BC. I read the reflection this Sunday – Lent is the most important time of the year to nurture our inner life.

  47. Greetings from the beautiful mountains of Virginia! I am Cathy. My pastor daughter is the one who encouraged me to read Henri Nouwen. I love his emphasis on being the Beloved, and I feel at peace when reflecting on his daily meditations. God is doing a new work in me through the writings of both Henri and Richard Rohr. I’m looking forward to this discussion.

  48. Hi! I am Zorangeli from Massachusetts. I came across Henri Nouwen’s writings when I went to Fuller Seminary in CA. Since then, he has been a spiritual mentor through his writings. His writings are helping me know to love and care for my young sons, which requires sacrificing and putting on hold some of my professional and ministerial activities. I’m just hoping to grow more and more in Christ.

  49. Hi, I am from California, I am a wife, a mother to grown children, and have several young grandchildren that I am fortunate to spend time with each week. I am newly retired and somewhat searching for increased purpose and peace. This is my first Henri Nouwen book discussion and I am happy to be here, praying to gain spiritual growth during this Lenten season

  50. Hello, my name is Richard and I live in the UK in East Yorkshire. I’ve read one of Henri’s books earlier last year and read the daily mailed excerpts from his writings and have listened to podcasts and YouTube teachings. I am always touched with Henri’s humility and honesty on how he feels which helps me enormously. This is my first online discussion of any kind so am looking forward to it.

    1. Good to connect with someone else in UK! I too love Henri’s honesty and vulnerability. I’m studying at Spurgeon’s and writing a dissertation on Vulnerability and Nouwen’s books play a key role.

  51. Greetings from metro Denver, Colorado. Henri Nouwen’s works either via video or printed form have greatly influenced my lifes journey. Most importantly I accepted that I/we are Beloved. When I speak to groups or individuals about our brokeness I share Henri’s words how each of us are uniquely broken. I’m looking forward to sharing this season of Lent with this group.

  52. Hi! I am Margi from Louisville, KY. This is my first Lent with you. I think I’ve known of Henri and his writings for years, but not until retirement have I taken a deeper dive into his works. I am a Now & Then podcast listener. I have enjoyed every episode but especially the ones that feature Henri himself. Somehow, hearing his wise, calm voice makes him seem like an intimate friend.

  53. Hello, I am Steve and I live in Atlanta. I received “Bread for the Journey” almost 30 years ago as a graduation present, and have turned to the writings of Henri Nouwen many times in the years since then. Apropos of Lent, I have most recently been finding inspiration and comfort in the writings that deal with Jesus’ temptation in the wilderness.

  54. Hello everyone. My name is Brenda, a retiree near Dover, New Hampshire. My first introduction to the healing words of Henri Nouwen was back in the early 80’s through his book, “The Wounded Healer.” At that time, I was seeking sources of support to help me as both a wife of a combat veteran with PTSD and a cofounder of a support group for spouses partners and family members of Vietnam Veterans. Since that time, I have read many of Henri’s books and love both the daily reflections and podcasts produced by the HN Society. Food for the journey!
    My goal is to further enrich my faith journey this Lent and my love for our Lord through Henri’s book and this community. Thank you HNS for this opportunity!

  55. Hi! My name is Dennis from the San Francisco Bay Area. Five years ago I began to read Nouwen on the urging of a spiritual director. I have always been able to relate to his ablitity to acknowledge his shortcomings and the difficult times in his life. Through these issues he always remained the Beloved of Jesus. This Lent I hope to grow in my quest to be the Beloved.

  56. Hello to everyone. My name is Brenda from New Hampshire. I am a 68 yr old retiree.
    I began studying and searching for a deeper understanding of the Catholic faith I was raised in since 1986. Henri Nouwen has been one of my “guides.” His writings speak from the heart to my heart. I also love the podcasts! I am at moderate risk of major complications due to my health history so I have spent the past six months in nearly total seclusion and the past two years with extremely limited ability to be with family.
    I am excited to begin my Lenten journey with you all and Henri Nouwens letters as I seek further guidance and understanding of living a life pleasing to our Lord.

  57. I’m Elisa from Toronto. I have read Henri Nouwen off and on for over 20 years. I have always been inspired by the humanity and practicality of his thoughts and teaching. In Henri, I find common ground.

  58. Greetings from South Texas where My husband and I are spending two months – Feb and Mar— from our home in central IoWa. These programs help keep me centered and in touch with Father-God, Son-Jesus and the Holy Spirit. Thank you for your generosity in preparing this online devotional and to your many attendees who will share their inspirational messages. Judy T. PS: A friend shared his work and I now thrive on it!

  59. My name is Annie, I am from North Carolina. I was first introduced to Henri Nouwen over 30 years ago in college, through Life of the Beloved. Since then I have strived to make Jesus the center of my life. I was diagnosed with stage 4 cancer 2 years ago and since my diagnosis I have had more time to read Nouwen’s works. I’ve been easily distracted with superficial things to keep my mind off my diagnosis and pain. I hope with this series to spend more time worshipping God and growing closer to Jesus. To reiterate the previous prayers may we all be filled with God’s grace and keep Jesus at our center.

  60. Hello. My name is Kathleen and I am from Oklahoma. I have found comfort and inspiration from Henri Nauwen’s writings for years now through different phases of my life and have passed his books and pamphlets on to my sisters and my son. I am eager to join this discussion.

  61. I’m Margot from Texas. I love Henri’s insights and the way he helps us to view the world in a new way. How he paints life with the focus to a loving God and life with a God we can always depend on to be with us in all circumstances.

  62. I’m Gerri from near Raleigh, NC. I’m a retired educator and have been reading Nouwen since I was in college in the early 60s. I’m looking forward to this study because I relate well to Rohr’s Universal Christ but have a harder time grasping Jesus as human and divine.

  63. Greetings. My name is Ruth and I am in Alabama. Henri was introduced to me about 15 years ago as I searched for a “voice” I could understand to lead me to Jesus. Henri was the first to break through my “intellect” to reach my heart and I am forever grateful. This is my first online discussion and I hope to experience Jesus in new and more profound ways.

  64. Hello everyone! My name is David from Pennsylvania. Nouwen has been an essential part of my devotional life for many years now. I am a recovering addict and am seeking to deepen my humility before others this Lenten season. I wish to learn how to be, identify and serve “the least of these”. Looking forward to our interactions.

  65. Hi. I’m Deborah from Massachusetts. A newcomer to the writings of Henri, I’ve got 5 of his books that I’m in the middle of. I’ve been a wife, a mother, and an RN for over 40 years now. Though life has been disrupted these past couple of years, with some deep losses, Jesus has been close by, holding me throughout. Henri came at just the right time. And his insights have opened up the path to live and love better.

  66. I’m from Alabama and a member of the Order of the Daughters of the King. I’ve been a Nouwen reader for many years and am always learning something new.

  67. I’m Eddie, living in Michigan. I was introduced to Henri’s writings years ago by a good friend, have read many of his books, and have been reading the daily emailed excerpts of his writing for years. A dear friend and I did the book discussion last year, and he will join me again, this time along with my middle daughter. I’m praying to grow this Lent in my role as a caregiver, inspired by that grace so apparent in Henri’s life!

  68. I am Patrick from St. Louis, Missouri. A dear friend was an avid reader of Henri Nouwen but, for some reason, I didn’t start reading him until just recently. I’ve read three books to date and am looking forward to this first Lenten study experience. May we all experience comfort and joy during these challenging times in our world.

  69. I am Christen from Ohio. I found Henri Nouwen initially through a Renovare discussion on spiritual formation. More recently from a parent’s stroke, I have been diving into his works on grief and caregiving.

    1. Hello! My name is Chris and I’m a historian from Pennsylvania. I came across Nouwen through my mother’s enjoyment of his work, and he really has helped me through physical and emotional pain, and, more recently, the losses of several family members in close succession.

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