Introducing LIVING WATER: Prayer and Praise with Single Parents

Invisible. Alone. Shamed. Ignored. Outcast. Silenced. Unseen. Helpless. Victimized. Unaided. Uncelebrated.

The list could go on and on.

Single mothers and single fathers have come to me time and time again with the same stories of the struggle to remain in the faith when the people around them remain so human. How are we to transcend what feels like persecution within our church families while we are trying to recover from personal trauma?

Our heart cry is to be seen, heard and …

This new project from Ancient Faith Ministries is the heart cry of many single moms and dads across America, and indeed the world, to be not only seen and heard but prayed with… It often seems to us that our prayers go unanswered just as it seems our silent tears go uncounted. Yet, like David shows us in the Psalms, we continue to cry out for where else shall we turn except to our God, the Theotokos and his Saints?

Not only do we feel alone in our struggles but also in our victories and blessings! Many of us have felt as if we are looked at a bit sideways when we share our unique praises such as when someone dropped off a grocery run when dad is stuck home with a sick little one or when mom discovers a forgotten $20 in her wallet. Yes, we really do thank God for every little thing…because there are no little blessings for us!

Some initial business of the Living Water blog

The vision of this blog is to become a place where single parents can share our prayers and praises for the wider church to join us in lifting in prayer.

To ensure that this is kept safe for us, Elise Photini and David Dean, single parents and the authors of this series, have set specific guidelines for submissions. All prayer requests and praises will be submitted via our Ancient Faith email email hidden; JavaScript is required where we will keep the contact information and personal identifying details confidential. (In other words, every identifying detail sent to this email address will be kept between David and I only—unless someone threatens to hurt themselves or another.) These requests and praises will be collated into themes and anonymized then shared with our church family in regular blog posts.

It is completely understandable that this format may seem awkward at first. Our goal is to open ourselves, our daily struggles and victories, to each other and to those who have very different struggles. So many times we hear “I don’t know how you do it! You are the strongest person I know!” by Moms and Dads who are barely surviving their own struggles in traditional two parent families. And yet we are struggling to the point of losing faith, total despair and utter hopelessness on a daily basis require more prayer than we can muster on our own.

We ask for your support

To that end, we call on single parents, supporters, those who can’t imagine the struggles of single parents, and those who also struggle to lift their prayers to heaven with us.  Please join us as we daily pray for comfort, peace, strength and also very practical, real needs such as food in the fridge, gas money, a roof over our heads and a safe place for our children to grow up.

Please feel free to comment here in the comments section below, however, David and I are very aware that much of the discourse around this project will need to be private. We encourage single parents and supporters alike to write us at email hidden; JavaScript is required

About Elise Photini

Elise Photini is an author, Beautiful Way coach and Registered Nurse raising her “littles” (now teens!) on the dry living-desert side of the Pacific Northwest as a single mom where she works as a home health geriatric nurse, while creating time to write and speak between horse shows with her girls, Boy Scout events with her son and gardening with herself in rare and treasured silence. See more about Elise Photini with links to her latest projects on

Living Water Blog Info


  1. This looks great! Looking forward to following the growth of this blog and thankful for the support provided here!

  2. Thank God ! Finally a place for us to share our pain, sorrow, and joy and peace. No one understands our needs. You have to everything to your children, who suffer with you. Yet you yourself often feel you are sinking, weeping., and so hurt. Tears at night ,alone, with only God and the Theotokos as companions and source of solace. Looking forward to your blog! I wish it had existed 12 years ago when I started this journey.

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