Bill McDonald's Newsletter

Ashes, Roses & More Dead Children

- A Meditation on February 14, 2018 -

When I arrived in Florida, on February 13, one of the first things my host and I planned was to attend the following day Ash Wednesday noon service at her local Episcopal Church. For each of us, being of long comfort within Anglican spirituality, it was both timely and a spiritually natural thing to do. Somewhere I heard in the background a morning news note that “some Bishops” were advising their faithful to refrain from eating chocolate and sharing roses - as if the rituals of St. Valentine would or could contaminate the rituals of the most holy first day of Lent. Fr. Hunter was not of light thumb when he imposed those ashes of “Remember O man that thou art dust...” on my forehead - and not a soul in that congregation uttered a “Happy Valentines Day” afterward.

Farther into the day we had other plans, more of a Valentines Day nature. Though a major consideration was just how much to allow that “most holy (and obvious) smudge” to remain visible to our world at large.

» Read this newsletter

FREE Monthly Newsletter

Whether you are a client or not, you can always benefit from some free monthly words of wisdom:
Your e-mail address:

My monthly newsletter, “Paying Attention,” was launched in April, 2007.  Each one contains thoughts and ideas that occur in the general areas of psychology, culture, or other matters that come from the interface between my work and the rest of the world. They may also contain news and information about myself, and new areas of my work, study and research.


I promise that your email address will not be sold, rented, loaned or revealed to anyone else.

Bill McDonald

To unsubscribe from this newsletter send a request to