The Warmth of Other Suns

A book review By Honna Brown One positive fruit of limited life at Lydia’s House (due to the pandemic) is that we have been able to set aside some time for shared reading. Together as a staff we have been reading Isabel Wilkerson’s book “The Warmth of Other Suns.” The book follows three main characters on their journey during a time in American history known as The Great Migration, which is one of the most underreported stories of the 20th century. The book, based on more than a thousand interviews, retells the story of each character and why he or

HOUSE NOTES

By Mary Ellen Mitchell Can it be said enough that it’s been a strange year? At Lydia’s House we have nothing to bench mark this against, but we keep on keeping on. Through later summer and into fall we continued to operate our shelter in socially distanced “suites” with kitchenettes and private bathrooms. Meals were largely discontinued while we considered options and scoured the latest updates on the CDC website for where Covid spread was occurring and how to stop it. There were times we felt really low about the lack of community and engagement, and we kept returning to

Introducing the Lydia’s House Atrium

Laura Menze, Lydia’s House Occupational Therapist A year ago on a staff retreat, we spoke of our longing to introduce more robust spiritual practices into the life of Lydia’s House. We brainstormed and let the ideas simmer in our collective consciousness. In our time of waiting and curiosity, Catechesis of the Good Shepherd (CGS) rose to the surface as a good fit for our community. Mary Ellen Mitchell’s children were part of this formation as young children and she was excited to introduce this to the children of Lydia’s House. Catechesis of the Good Shepherd is a Montessori based religious

Pandemic Practices

by Meridith Owensby At first glance, the particularities of pandemic life are awful for intentional community. You should not socialize unnecessarily. You should not sing together. You should stay six feet away from one another at all times. Your kids can’t go to school and shouldn’t hang out with other kids. If ever there was an argument to be made against intentional, high-density communal housing, this is it.   And yet, I would argue that our community’s existence and practices have served to preserve joy and hope during this pandemic season. In fact, we even found ways to embrace new

Constant Changes

As July began, so began a new wave of covid -19 cases in Hamilton County, where we live. We had all hoped the worst was behind us. Things started reopening. People were noticeably more pleasant to be around. But sadly, this more open way of life was short lived! Life at Lydia’s House had been getting “normal” again as well. We once again had all four rooms open and filled. But with the rapidly spreading cases in Hamilton County we looked to our new pandemic guidelines and determined we needed to take a step back. With rising numbers, our county