Pastor Stacy Boorn: Changing Church through “Visual Spirituality”

Rev. Stacy Boorn (photo by Viva van Assen

Rev. Stacy Boorn, pastor of Ebenezer/herchurch Lutheran, in San Francisco, recently celebrated her 25th anniversary of ministry. Pastor Boorn’s prophetic voice and actions have brought change to the church and the wider culture, supporting full equality for all. Through her boldness in re-imaging divinity to include the Divine Feminine, she has made major contributions to justice for women, for all people, and for the earth. (See my previous blogposts on Pastor Boorn:;

In addition to changing the church and world through her prophetic preaching and liturgies, Pastor Boorn brings change through her gifts of visual art. Her magnificent photographs are on exhibit in A Woman’s Eye Gallery (AWE Gallery) in San Francisco and online ( She also blogs weekly ( This is how she describes her blog: “In this blog I am offering you two/three new images each week with a little commentary from my soul and techniques used to create them. I consider my images ‘visual spirituality’ teasing out the essence of nature/things/people.”

With profound gratitude to Pastor Stacy Boorn for her prophetic, creative gifts, I am including here an excerpt from one of her recent blogposts.

From “Limbs and Legs” (© 2013 Stacy Boorn. Used with Permission.)

The country is filled with celebrations: The Inauguration of the President, the Birthday of Martin Luther King, Jr, the 50th Anniversary of the “I have Dream” speech, the 49ers heading to the super bowl and the party to mark my 25 years in ministry. Okay. Maybe the last one is not a national or regional celebration, but the herchurch community sure knows how to create a hoopla.
"Tree of Life," by Stacy Boorn
Contemplating all these commemorations I am drawn to the symbol of the Tree of Life and especially its historical connections to the divine feminine.  For us in the bay area winter is a time of pruning and the plum tree next to A Woman’s Eye Gallery is being clipped by our gardeners. Her branches are being cut way back in the hopes that they will again reach toward the sun producing new buds that will promise spring blossoms.
But the wild trees that are not trimmed have those wonderful million twig fingers pointing in every direction. At least that is how I saw the oaks on the hillsides of Mt. Diablo. There are no leaves yet, just twisted bare branches.
After photographing one such tree in beautiful
"Tree of Life," by Stacy Boorn
morning light I still wasn’t satisfied with the way the capture expressed my experience with the tree. So I inverted the color resulting in the image you see here (a simple step in Photoshop – control I). This rendering expresses what I image when I sing Jann Aldredge-Clanton’s third stanza of  “Hark! Wisdom’s Urgent Cry”:
Come to the Tree of Life; She honors our embrace.
Her fruit our deepest powers revive; She crowns us with Her grace.
The Tree of Life stands tall; Her beauty fills the earth.
Her radiant flowers never fall; Her fullness brings new birth.

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