Photo Ministry

They say a picture is worth 1000 words and Mary Williams, a wonderful campus and youth minister in Montana who I got to know at the Frank J. Lewis Institute seems to know that better than the rest of us. Her photo blog is AMAZING! She’s newly married and so, I stole this pic of Greg, her hubby, who is obviously jumping for joy because he has the coolest wife ever (well, next to me, of course). There’s one more I love from her blog below, but you really need to check out the whole thing by clicking here.

What I really love about this besides the awesome nature shots (OK if you’re still reading my drivel—stop—go to her blog and you’ll be back to my rant in about an hour because you’ll just not be able to stop looking at these pictures.) is that she also offers some written reflections about herself and her beliefs (and Mrs. Williams you are SO photogenic–ask your husband!) and the students she ministers to.

I’m sure that not only this is reflective time for Ms. Mary but it’s also reflective for her viewers and the folks she ministers to. She’s taken time to capture them in different ways and it may very well lead to their own self-reflection. “Why does Mary think I’m wonderful?” could very well be said by a student who struggles with self-esteem or who wonders about their future. The wonders and the beauty of nature can stop any of us in our tracks and thrust us into reflection. The love Mary and Greg share is something married couples or those entering marriage might stimulate thoughts on moments like that which they recall in their own relationship–that first house or the more mundane moments that are nonetheless shared and wonderful.

Ok…if you haven’t looked yet…this one is bound to grab you. Here’s Mary’s reflection from May 1:

I’m only sharing one photo this week…not because I don’t have others to share but because this one photo made a profound impact on me.

An old, twisted, rotting tree in the middle of Two Moon Park. Defeated. Decrepit. Dead.

I’m reminded of a quote from Paul Claudel in a friend’s office…

“Jesus did not come to explain away suffering or remove it. He came to fill it with his presence.”

As I witness a friend ever so gracefully care for her dying mother…as I minister to students graduating, and in many ways, grieving the end of their college years…as I read and hear about pain and suffering in the news around the world….I am reminded…

He came to fill it with his presence.

I looked at the death of that tree and saw…the cross.

Click here to see that tree and be amazed.

Thanks, Mary –for your ministry and your creativity and of course your friendship. We’ll have to think of a creative project to share at some point. For now, know that I’ll be mentioning your work at this year’s Frank J. Lewis when I present on technology and ministry.

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2 Comments

  1. Kathy McCleary May 16, 2012 at 2:49 pm

    Wow, Mike! You captured the inner beauty and call to ministry that Mary truly has and I am so pleased!!! Thank you!!

  2. I love Mary’s blog, too; I’ve gotten to know her over the last few years and she displays her craft with an amazing intuition. It is a nice of example of the blend of art and ministry.

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