Deborah Anderson
Kneeling at the cross cover art

Kneeling at the Cross

When I began cantoring at St Benedict’s Roman Catholic church in the Wallingford District in Seattle, Washington, I was unfamiliar with both the Mass and the iconic Crucifixion. In the Protestant churches where I was raised, the cross was empty and much was made about the correctness of that.

Week after week as I sang, I would watch the people interact with the liturgical elements of worship. It took me almost a year to get up the courage to kneel as they did and put the sign of the cross on my body. I came to spend some time alone in the sanctuary and these poems are the declarative conversations I had with Jesus hanging on the cross while I examined every visual aspect of him.

Eventually the thoughts came together in the form of a book; a black spiral bound scrapbook tied with a ribbon that I would literally hug when I carried it. Included with the poems were pictures, photographs, I had taken of the St Benedict’s crucifix. In late 2014, just as I was preparing to go to press with this book, I was told that the photographs could not legally be included. I will be forever grateful to Will Forrester, and his wife Jasper, for trusting me when I asked him to consider creating illustrations. I didn’t really ask. I kinda sorta just told him God wanted him to do them. It became our joke. As things progressed we were delighted to find the anointing of the Spirit on his work as, indeed, the illustrations he was inspired to create seemed to bring a new dimension to the written word.

It is my fervent hope these few words in the pages following will be encouragement, and epiphany, and renewal, a companion during those nights when the pressures of this life bow the head to the heart and faith seems insufficient. For indeed Jesus is the Alpha and Omega. May you learn that if you talk to Jesus, he will hear and heal and there is peace.

The simple act of kneeling led me to take on the realities of salvation on my body in ways that eventually led me to the Pentecostals, through the charismatic and into the liturgical worship of the Episcopalian church. More importantly, it led to a new, and deeper, knowledge of the character and magnitude of God’s love. To God be the Glory!

Order from your favorite book dealer/seller either online or at brick and mortar using ISBN # 9780692404003