All the time: Homeless and Hungry

A homeless man with no legs broke me of giving money to people on the street. I was new to Chicago, finishing my degree at Columbia College and trying to get my band “discovered” in the meantime. He stopped me on my way to class downtown and asked for some cash to stay at the YMCA. I did not have that much money. I had tokens to get the train to school and…

Day 12: The Spiritual Necessity of Tithing and Alms Giving

I gave money to the man who appears every day on the expressway off-ramp at Armitage and I-90east. I see him there walking slowly, shuffling really. He smiles a weak and nearly toothless smile, his face brown and rugged like the sign he carries, “Need help. Please.” Generally I don’t give money to homeless people directly. I was broken of that habit years ago by a man who had no legs but…

Nearly Orthodox: Prone to Wander, pt 2

Excerpt from Nearly Orthodox: on being a modern woman in an ancient tradition When the homeless woman with the beautiful smile passed my car at the stoplight the first day on the way to school, Henry asked if I would give her money. It had been a long time since the thought had even crossed my mind. I had gotten into the habit of looking away; to ease my conscience, I’d pray…