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The Magazine of The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America

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Self-care vignettes

Keeping a balance

Janelle Hooper, a pastor of St. Paul Lutheran Church, Wheaton, Ill., works out three times a week at the local YMCA as a way to stay healthy and balanced. Hooper was a competitive gymnast until as a college sophomore she fell and tore all four ligaments in her knee. After the injury, a degenerative process kicked in, and she's had five surgeries. "The working out is just to maintain a certain level of functioning," Hooper says. She starts her morning with meditation, visits a spiritual director once a month and does a Bible study with her husband, Brad. Hooper also practices self-care by taking time away from work.

Time out for women

Denise Cruz, 1, watches as her mother, Sonia Le Cruz, and other women exercise in an aerobics class sponsored by the Interfaith Health Ministry at Grace Lutheran Church, Omaha, Neb. Gabriella Ortiz, program coordinator, says the ministry provides an opportunity for area Latino women, who are often isolated and don't speak English, to gather and raise awareness on their health issues and other life problems. Ortiz says obesity, high cholesterol, diabetes and depression are common.


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