Shared Experience

Star Story Keeps Military Families Close
Shared Experience

Star Story Keeps Military Families Close

by Erin Simpson

When Brenda Ehrmantraut found out that her brother, a member of the National Guard, would be deployed for a year, she knew his departure would have a huge impact on her two young nephews. She wrote a story about a nightly game of catch using the North Star. Now a planetarium show, Night Catch keeps military children close to their loved ones, even when they are oceans, mountains, or deserts apart. […]

Story & Art Walk Margins of Bipolar
Shared Experience

Story & Art Walk Margins of Bipolar

by Meagan Frank

Kathy Brandt processes the world through writing, while her son Max Maddox processes the world through art. Coming together to write the story of their experience with Max’s bipolar disorder challenged and changed both of them. Their willingness to expose their pain has started a necessary conversation in the mental health community and provided comfort for families experiencing similar challenges. “I want the book to be a sign of hope…” says Max. “I want to save a life or two.” […]

Homeless Readers at Home in Book Club
Shared Experience

Homeless Readers at Home in Book Club

by Mary Hertz Scarbrough

Bethel Lutheran’s Tuesday morning book club may at first seem like any other book club. The group has read several dozen books and enjoyed virtual and in-person chats with a diverse group of authors. What sets it apart? Its participants are Madison, Wisconsin’s homeless population. The club began when a homeless man named Eric Manley died on the steps of Bethel Lutheran on a bleak winter night in 2009. Eric’s friend Mark Wilson, manager at a nearby Taco Bell, wanted to make a difference. […]