I was ordained on January 12. This may come as a big surprise if you happen to have followed my life in the last year (an egotistical assumption, I know. I’m barely following my own life). In fact, it was about one year ago that I decided to NOT get ordained.
I wrote this piece to help articulate why after spending four years, accruing $15,000+ in student loan debt, and…Continue
Added by kaanestad on January 30, 2013 at 5:00pm — No Comments
On Thursday, February 23, 2012, I made the most difficult decision of my life: I formally withdrew from the candidacy process for ordination in the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA). At least for the time being, I will…Continue
Added by kaanestad on March 1, 2012 at 4:00am — No Comments
Though religion is absent, the universe is far from being philosophically united as atheists now fall into one of three…Continue
While modern mental health care has recognized the incredibly dangerous and often paralyzing effects of depression characterized by low self-esteem, feeling worthless, and feeling as if one is being rightfully punished, certain brands of Christian fundamentalism seem to continue to preach a destructive theology of sin that I argue enhances those feelings and increases the risk for suicide.
In my own preparation for ordination in the Lutheran church I have witnessed firsthand the…Continue
I knew there was something wrong when my right leg turned purple after standing for three minutes, but I never guessed it was life threatening. The triage nurse at the emergency room pressed her fingers against my shin and began counting. When she reached 12, she grabbed her phone, pressed a button, and said, “We have a level two here. Gotta get her to Ward E immediately.” She then looked at me and said, “You might lose that leg.”
What was supposed to be a healthy recovery from a…Continue
When I first read Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein, I knew I would never be the same. I was a 21-year-old English major completely enthralled with Gothic literature, but nothing prepared me for the monster I was about to meet in between the pages of a now tattered book.
Much like the day I first picked up Frankenstein, when I began seminary I had no idea about the monster I was about to meet…Continue
I preached this sermon at Oxford University’s Keble College during an Evensong service. The service was one of the last of the academic year and took place during final exams. I preached it less than a week from my final departure from Oxford.
Grace and peace to you all. My name is Kari Aanestad, and I am honored to be among you all tonight. As a brief note of introduction, I am a seminary student from Minnesota and am in my last year of study for ordination in the…Continue
Added by kaanestad on June 10, 2011 at 9:48am — No Comments
What is a “miracle” really?
Colloquially speaking we tend to associate the word “miracle” with a specific event that is not explainable in natural terms, and the outcome of that event seems to be inspired or caused by divine agency. A miracle is a happy ending – a sudden and divine solution to a seemingly unsolvable situation. It is a supernatural event that is inherently good and works to make everything better. According to this definition in light of Christian theology, God is…Continue
Added by kaanestad on April 15, 2011 at 5:01am — No Comments
She never saw it coming, and then there was peanut butter everywhere. Her new khaki pants were ruined, the whole classroom burst out laughing, and she didn’t come back to school for the rest of the day. She was my best friend, we were 13, and it was all my fault.
Earlier that day I decided it would be funny to smear the tan paste all over the seat of her wooden desk chair. The mess was hidden so well that I barely held back giggles as I tiptoed away from her chair and waited from…Continue
Added by kaanestad on February 11, 2011 at 12:02am — No Comments
Whenever people asked me what I wanted to be when I grew up, I almost always had the same answer: Ariel.
I wanted nothing more than her thick, red hair, tiny waist, and natural gift for song. Her codependent fish friend Flounder, stern…Continue
Added by kaanestad on January 16, 2011 at 10:44pm — No Comments
His eyes burned green and his hands shook as he gave me my first history lesson on the Six-Day War. Somehow at 22-years-old I had managed to find myself sitting at a moonlit beach restaurant in Aqaba, Jordan having hardly ever learned a thing about Israel. I felt ashamed, and my dinner companions offered me more hummus in consolation. That night I learned, among many things, that Jordan had absorbed 40 percent of the nearly 5 million Palestinian refugees who were forced to leave their…Continue
Added by kaanestad on January 7, 2011 at 6:16pm — No Comments
I suffer from situational depression, and it’s called life. In its simplest clinical terms, situational depression is a form of deep sadness that often follows a traumatic life event such as the death of a loved one, the loss of a job, a divorce, a move, etc. The symptoms can be similar in severity to clinical depression and last for months depending on how the suffering person perceives the trigger event. This form of depression can be very serious, and what is especially unnerving is that…Continue
Added by kaanestad on December 10, 2010 at 7:25am — No Comments