Catherine Cavanagh

is a chaplain at St Mary CHS in Brockville Ontario. She is also pursuing a doctoral degree through Regis College, University of Toronto focusing on questions of justice, hospitality and narrative in high school chaplaincy. An avid storyteller and speaker, Catherine plays with the interweave between biblical texts and the stories of our time to look for meaning and purpose. The author of Women Priests: Answering the Call, she welcomes visits at


Would I?*

Jesus waits, steady on the shifting water, his feet caressed by slow lapping waves that hide the depths of darkness below. He sees the fishing vessel and looks for Peter. Under that sparkled sky, silently expectant, the Son of Man knows the miracle will happen. Or does he? Humans are untrusting and untrustworthy creatures, lacking in faith, enchained by the mundane, blindly obeying... Keep Reading

You Have Come Home

Meet Catherine Cavanagh, contributor to the current issue, “Yearning for God.” Her article, “Be Still, and Breathe,” is found on page 22. To order a copy, call 1.800.972.0433 or order online.   “Love, and do what you want,” Augustine wrote in the early 400s. But what does it mean to love truly? We are captivated by love stories, whether they tell of romance or friendship,... Keep Reading

Desert Dreams

There’s something about the desert. It calls you to notice the trivial and immediate – a grain of sand, a single drift. And it calls you to notice the huge and everlasting – the horizon and the endless sky. Many years ago, I backpacked across the Kalahari Desert in Botswana with two friends. We had spent Christmas in the Okavango Delta, exploring the... Keep Reading

A Campfire Truth

Surprisingly, Ash Wednesday always fills me with a sense of hope, for all that it calls me to reflect on eternity, on sin, and on death. When I touch the ashes, I’m reminded not just of the mistakes I’ve made, and the people I’ve hurt, but paradoxically of all the ways in which God has been present in my life. At the end... Keep Reading

Elizabeth’s Hope: A Meditation


And the child grew and became strong in spirit, and he was in the wilderness till the day of his manifestation to Israel. Luke 1:80, RSV Elizabeth nestles her infant son John, peering at his face in flickering candlelight—this future holy prophet who nevertheless awakens her in the dark hours with his hunger for her milk, his need to grow, his intent... Keep Reading

We Walk Together for a Little While

Many years ago, on a cold December night, I stood on a sidewalk in Kingston outside the Grand Theatre waiting for my date. He was late. It was the last night of term before Christmas vacation. “Cathy!” My brother James called to me from across Princess Street. “What’re you doing? There’s a bunch of us going to Coppers.” “Can’t,” I answered, as he crossed... Keep Reading

The Art of Reaching Beyond

I read Michael Downey’s piece “On Learning How to Look” (Weavings XXVI/4, Aug/Sep/Oct 2011, “The Art of Loving”) with great delight. It’s only in our willingness to look past stereotypes and categories to the real person behind, to reach out to the ‘Other’ and hence to God in the ‘face-to-face’ approach advocated by Downey (and philosopher Emmanuel Levinas), that we can open our... Keep Reading

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