Becoming Water, performance, Glacier National Park Artist Residency, 2018
paternoster (noun) 1. (in the Roman Catholic Church) the Lord's Prayer, especially in Latin
Paternoster lakes occur in a series down a formerly glaciated valley in small basins scooped out by the glacier as it retreated. The name suggests a similarity to beads on a rosary, and the lakes are often connected to one another by streams that run between them and down the valley. -National Park Service
Painted prayers (The Lilies How They Grow) have been linked together by daily prayers for a life aligned with openness, love, and joy. On July 26, 2018, as an enactment of this continual prayer, I swam the chain of paternoster lakes and waterways that make up the Grinnell Glacier Complex in Glacier National Park. I prayed my way from the life-sustaining headwaters of the North American continent to the bottom of the valley, moving along the course one lake, one stroke, one moment of simply being carried at a time. I wanted to be inside the beads, and the thread lacing them together. I wanted to be the water—to open up a space for my prayers and the prayers of others by becoming the rosary in the landscape itself.
All of my love and gratitude to Jaimey Hamilton-Faris and Elizabeth Elliott for imagining and realizing this prayer with me.