It’s 10am on Saturday, December 31, in Santa Rosa, California. It’s cold and dark and absolutely pouring outside. I’m still in my pajamas and sitting in my bed with my laptop and my coffee. Apple Music is shuffling through my Replay 2022 playlist, and I’m diving into my now-annual tradition of looking through my Instagram and my calendar, reflecting over the last year. (2021 In Review, 2020 In Review, 2019 In Review) I’ve realized over the years that it’s an opportunity for me – if I take the opportunity – to experience God, to open my eyes and my mind and my heart to see how God has been so present through all the moments of this past year. Have you heard of the contemplative spiritual practice called the Examen? “Prayerful reflection on the events of the day in order to detect God’s presence and discern his direction for us.” You can read more about this practice here… I encourage you to check it out. It can be so helpful when you want to experience the presence of the Divine in your life… Sometimes it helps to realize God has been here with us the whole time.

Little did I know last year at this time that my 2022 would be defined by two pivotal moments and that the same man would be integral to both. In the early morning of March 3, I had an ischemic stroke. Thank God Alejandro had gotten into town the night before and was able to get me to the emergency room within 30 minutes. I am grateful that my life is (mostly) back to normal, but the stroke, the heart surgery that followed in May, and the months of slow and steady recovery were a huge part of my year. And then on November 23, my dear friend Annie officiated Alejandro’s and my tiny, private wedding in her backyard. Such joy! And although we are not together on New Year’s Eve, we are hoping and praying that 2023 will bring his green card into our lives so that he’ll be here next year at this time.

I’m so grateful to be here today, able to look back with gratitude at all that God has done in my life and in my work. I’m grateful that you have joined me. Grab a cup of something and get comfortable! Here we go…




  • On March 2, I led The Quest through our annual Ash Wednesday service. It was a powerful, sobering reminder that life is short and fragile, and that we should live well, keep short accounts and do our best to be connected to our own hearts, our loved ones and God. Watch here. After the service, I drove to San Francisco and picked Alejandro up from the airport. We had dinner at Benihana and then drove home to Santa Rosa.
  • The next morning, everything changed. Thank God, Alejandro was already scheduled to be here with me in Santa Rosa until the 18th. It was so comforting and helpful to have him with me. My church family stepped up and took care of my responsibilities. But life had to slow down pretty significantly. My next few months were a lot less busy.
  • On March 13, I was able to go back to church and share a little bit about my stroke with our congregation. You can watch the video here.
  • I had to wear a thirty-day heart monitor so my cardiologist could figure out why I had had a stroke in the first place.
  • I blogged Some Helpful Background for Conservative Christians Who Want to Talk with Me About Sexuality.







  • I kicked off September joining friends from the Journey Center for a guided Labyrinth experience, and it was profound and really meaningful.
  • On September 2, Alejandro and I met with our immigration lawyer for the first time to discuss options for green cards and marriage.
  • Alejandro arrived for another visit on the 3rd, this time staying through the 24th.
  • We saw Stephen Sondheim’s Follies at the SF Playhouse.
  • We saw the controversial revival of Oklahoma! and really enjoyed it!
  • We started another book club with The Quest, this time on the topic of homelessness. Kevin Nye‘s Grace Can Lead Us Home: A Christian Call to End Homelessness.
  • We saw Moulin Rouge! (All these Broadway shows with exclamation points in their titles!)
  • We had breakfast with Jake and Kajsa, and then later that day we bought our wedding rings. Very sneaky.
  • We celebrated Emily’s and Zachary’s 21st birthday, complete with boozy bingo called by Steve Ausburne!
  • Alejandro and I applied for our marriage license in Sonoma County.
  • On the 22nd, I celebrated my 51st birthday with Alejandro, the twins and some friends at Russian River Brewery. (And the night before, at Food + Faith in Novato, Quest friends had celebrated me with cupcakes at dinner together.)
  • Alejandro flew home on the 23rd.



  • Alejandro flew to California on the 4th and we had dinner together at Chalkboard in Healdsburg.
  • We celebrated our friend Phil Rountree’s 70th Birthday Party at The Quest and then headed to San Francisco to see a show called Mighty Real at Piano Fight w with our friend Sharon DeGraw.
  • We celebrated Kajsa’s 25th Birthday on the 13th.
  • We spent the November 14-17 at a condo in Tahoe City. It was so nice to get away and enjoy what we knew was a little “pre-honeymoon.”
  • We got back from Tahoe just in time to celebrate The Quest’s annual Thanksgiving feast “Bowla.” It was a beautiful time of fellowship and delicious food!
  • Hey look who got married!
  • After our little back yard wedding, we had a beautiful lunch with Annie and Victoria in Berkeley and then drove up to San Rafael, where I participated in an interfaith Thanksgiving service for the Street Chaplaincy. Emily met us there and sang three songs with me. Then Alejandro, Emily and I had late-night Chinese food and celebrated Thanksgiving and marriage. It was a really special day.
  • We spent Thanksgiving with Luanne, her mom and the kids. Jake and Kajsa were in town too.
  • Alejandro flew home on Saturday the 26th. It was harder than usual, knowing that he can’t come back to the US until his green card arrives, but at least we are in process now. We trust God.
  • We celebrated the First Sunday of Advent with my kids in the Quest Band. I always love playing with them. What a gift.


  • I started December with a cool opportunity to sing and tell stories in a show called “The Naughty List,” first at Martuni’s in San Francisco and then at The California Theatre in Santa Rosa. I hadn’t done anything like this in a very long time, so it was a lot of fun to put together my set and create something new.
  • I got to be a guest speaker at a support group for women in mixed-orientation marriages.
  • We had a great annual budget meeting at The Quest, and then I got to celebrate Christmas at my friend Doug Martin’s open house.
  • Krystle Jeffers and I played music and led worship at the Journey Center Advent Service on the 18th.
  • I got to have Christmas with Jake and Kajsa a few days early before they left to spend the actual holiday with her family in Washington.
  • We shared our final Food + Faith meal for 2022 together at The Quest.
  • On Christmas Eve, about a hundred of us gathered together in The Quest’s sanctuary and celebrated the light of Christ coming into the world. It was a moving time, and I thank God every time I think about the gifts of my life, my family, and this amazing faith community. You can watch the service here.
  • I am so grateful for the meaningful time spend with my family this Christmas.

As always, this post has taken much longer to write than I originally planned. But I’m so thankful for the opportunity to look back, to reflect on the year that has passed. We never know what 365 days will bring, do we? I could never have imagined what 2022 had in store for me. And the reality is that God has walked with me through all of it. And so as I look forward to 2023, I do so with an open heart and mind, trusting that God will be walking with me through whatever this new year brings as well. Thank you for your love and support, friends. It really does mean the world to me. Happy New Year!