That a baby's arrival not be considered a "medical" event is certainly a liberating perspective. How much more freeing, thought, to grasp the spiritual truth of that child's appearing. "Pregnancy and childbirth: spiritual preparation" shows how one couple's prayers paved the way for their daughter's arrival. Another piece, "Fearless mothering," tells how a new mother overcame an excessive concern for her daughter's well-being.

Of course, not all mothers come to the role in the typical way. Blended families and those formed through adoption and stepparenting face some uncommon challenges. In "Belle-mère or beautiful mother," a stepmother shares some of the lessons she learned when she married into a "ready-made family" of five.

Whether you're expecting a child, anticipating new responsibilities at work, raising crops, or overseeing a construction project, we think you'll find this look at the spiritual dimensions of motherhood can contribute to the ideas you're nurturing in your own experience. Enjoy!

—The Editors

August 25, 1997

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