The Institute for Spirituality and Health
Exploring the connections between spirituality and health.


Spirited Words

See below for a collection of reflections, writings, essays, poems, and other contributions that the ISH community has submitted over the years. We hope you enjoy.

If you are interested in submitting a piece to our blog, please contact Anyang Anyang <>. We publish writing that relates to our mission of enhancing well-being by exploring the relationship between spirituality and health.


We Named our Cadaver “Grace.”

By John Graham

March 21st, 2014

Every now and then I read something that I cannot forget.  I was given a book entitled “Operation Soar: Empowerment for Students” by Sabrina Echols-Elliott, M.D.   Dr. Elliott begins her book telling about her first day in Anatomy Class in medical school.  I was deeply touched when I read:

“It was the best of times, and the worst of times.  It was only by the grace of God and “the other Grace” that sustained me.  Our cadaver was without a name, but there was a tag that gave the cause of death as ‘hepatic or liver failure.’  I thought to myself, ‘Why did she die of liver failure?’  So our team decided to name her ‘Grace.’  I knew only the grace of God would carry me and the team through our rigorous life-changing anatomy course.  What I didn’t know, was that ‘Grace,’ my cadaver, would never leave my heart.”

At the Institute we call these “sacred moments.”   I am referring to myself.  Reading what Dr. Elliott wrote was a sacred moment for me.  I am quite sure she has had many sacred moments with her patients.

John K. Graham, M.D., D.Min., President/CEO

Sara Moore