MARCH 4, 2021 | DONATE
Sophia is the mercy of God in us.
She is the tenderness with which the infinitely mysterious power of pardon
 turns the darkness of our sins into the light of grace.
She is the inexhaustible fountain of kindness,
and would almost seem to be, in herself, all mercy.
Thomas Merton
Dear Friend of Cranaleith,

A hint of spring is on the wind this month, as creation leans into light. We observe with the world International Women’s Month and, in our own nation, Women’s History Month. One of the critical concerns of the Sisters of Mercy, “women seeking fullness of life in Church and Society,” propels Cranaleith to give voice to the wisdom and well-being of women, as does the historic main house on our grounds (Mill-Rae) which was a gathering place for women suffragists.
Today’s society desperately needs to listen to the voices of women. At Cranaleith, we have witnessed an immense longing for relational, mutually empowering feminine qualities at every level. We cherish the wisdom of mystics who offer a feminine image of God. We delight in the faith of the women of Scripture and in Jesus’ examples of inclusion. It is a privilege to provide a contemplative space to listen to the beauty, pain and truth of women’s experience. As we journey through Lent, we embrace Christ crucified in the global suffering of women and join our hearts to the Merciful Love that heals us all. 

The Cranaleith Staff
O Jerusalem, Jerusalem…
how often I have longed to gather your children together,
as a hen gathers her chicks under her wings, but you were unwilling!
Mt 23:37
Cranaleith Launches Matching Gift Challenge to Raise $75,000

We are thrilled to announce that Cranaleith supporters Ron Selzer of the Broken Wing Foundation and Jeanne and Francis Trainer, Jr., have pledged to match all gifts to the 2020-2021 annual appeal up to $75,000! We are asking you, our friends and supporters, to help us rise to the challenge and match these incredibly generous donations by April 30, 2021. With your financial support, Cranaleith will continue to be accessible to all who seek rest and renewal of the spirit.
All retreats are offered virtually on Zoom. Scholarships are available because everyone is welcome at Cranaleith. Please email so we can assist you.
During this morning retreat, we will explore the interplay of wisdom and contemplation as viewed through the lens of Celtic spirituality, “a spirituality,” as Carl McColman describes it, “at the edge of the world.” The morning includes time for prayer, input and sharing. Come, open to the wonder that God desires for us!

Program fee: $30
You still have two opportunities to join Cranaleith Spiritual Center Program Director Bernadette Rudolph as she explores faith and adversity in the Old Testament narratives of Judith and Jonah. Each morning of reflection is self-contained. Come for one or more! Together, we will reflect on how each story speaks to our own experiences with adversity.

Program fee: $20

Tip: Gather your Bible study or book club and participate in this series together!
Witness actor and story-teller Gigi McGraw bring to light the life and work of two 19th century African-American activists, Harriet Forten Purvis (Hattie) and Charlotte Forten Grimké!

Join us on March 25 as we learn about Gigi’s research, watch her perform excerpts from biographies, diary and journal entries and participate in a Q & A. Bring your dessert and favorite beverage for this combination story time/conversation and let your spirit be moved to contemplation and activism!

Program fee: $10
News from Cranaleith: Stations of the Cross Restored
Despite the fact that we are running at a limited capacity due to the pandemic, good things are happening at Cranaleith!

We are grateful to Tom Flanagan and Fred Stopper who restored and installed our beautiful Stations of the Cross. We look forward to sharing them with our guests for years to come. Thank you, Tom and Fred!
Watch from Home: International Women's Month
International Women's Day 2021
Talitha Kum: international religious network working to stop human trafficking
"For Women Who Are the Victims of Violence"
Pope Francis
Celebrate from Home: St. Patrick's Day
"You Do Not Walk Alone"
by Elaine Hagenberg
"A Celtic Blessing"
Poetry from Home
"Hope Is a Woman Who Has Lost Her Fear" for Sundus Saleh, Iraqi Mother by Alice Walker

In our despair that justice is slow
we sit with heads bowed wondering how even whether
we will ever be healed.
Perhaps it is a question
only the ravaged, the violated,
seriously ask. And is that not now almost all of us?
But hope is on the way.
As usual Hope is a woman
herding her children around her
all she retains of who she was; as usual except for her kids
she has lost almost everything.
Hope is a woman who has lost her fear.
"Still I Rise" by Maya Angelou
Out of the huts of history’s shame
I rise
Up from a past that’s rooted in pain
I rise
I'm a black ocean, leaping and wide,
Welling and swelling I bear in the tide.

Leaving behind nights of terror and fear
I rise
Into a daybreak that’s wondrously clear
I rise
Bringing the gifts that my ancestors gave,
I am the dream and the hope of the slave.
I rise
I rise
I rise.
Reflect from Home
The Good News 4 You: A Reflection of the Readings for the Third Sunday of Lent, Cycle B

“You shall not have other gods besides me.” Notice that God acknowledges there are other gods to be had and we all raise up some thing, person or value above God. If this weren’t a problem, it wouldn’t need a law! Read more.

Listen here to the podcast.

The pandemic has brought profound sorrow to so many families unable to grieve a loved one, because they cannot gather together for prayer and story-telling. To help, Cranaleith has composed a virtual memorial service for family members and friends who wish to remember an individual who has died.  

The service includes readings, prayers, music and the opportunity for sharing about the person who has died.  Download a copy of the service and host it yourself on your preferred tele-conferencing app (like Zoom, Teams or Skype). Someone in your circle of family and friends can lead the simple service.
Reverence the memories and blessings you share, as you comfort one another. 
Do you need a Lenten getaway?
Do you miss Cranaleith’s beauty?
Have you spent quiet time with God lately?
Book a Private Onsite Retreat Now!
Consider coming to Cranaleith for an onsite retreat for two to seven days. We can safely host up to four overnight retreatants at a time. Our Reopening Plan follows CDC guidelines.

Contact us at or
215-934-6206, ext. 102, to schedule the time for renewal you’ve been missing!
Resources From Home

Community Support

Explore from Home

Spiritual Direction
We are still offering Spiritual Direction via phone and teleconferencing. Contact Cathy Maguire, RSM at or 215-858-6239. 
Psychotherapy is also available. Please contact Leslie Porreca, RSM, LCSW. 

Individual retreats available -- both online and onsite options! Call Maria DiBello, RSM, at 215-934-6206 or visit our website to learn more.

Connect With Us Online 
Get daily prayers, reflections, blog posts and images from our beautiful property via our website and social media channels.
Twitter: @cranaleith
Instagram: @cranaleith

Sponsored by the Sisters of Mercy, Cranaleith offers a contemplative space for all those seeking wholeness and transformation for themselves and society. We are committed to making Cranaleith accessible to all, especially to persons who are poor and those who work in solidarity with them. We invite those at the center of need and those at the center of influence to reflection, reverent dialogue and meaningful partnerships. Please help us support our work.
Cranaleith Spiritual Center | 13475 Proctor Road | Phila., PA 19116