... She was sitting on a low stool ... and she was praying, offering this cooked meat.

Harriet Kollin

Harriet Kollin grew up in the Philippines, one of ten siblings and the daughter of an Episcopal priest. She has many colorful memories of early childhood. Hear the stories she recalls when she reflects on the theme “sacrifice.”

So when I hear the word sacrifice, the first thing that comes to mind is my mother, because my mother raised ten children of her own and five of my father’s first six children. The youngest of the first of my half siblings was raised by his maternal grandparents.

But my mother, I think in my mind, she desired, she must have desired to have higher education but was unable to because she raised 10 children. Although I’m not sure but I would like to think it was also her choice to have ten children. In my culture having more kids is a sign of wealth. We may not be financially wealthy but the more children you have, the richer you are. Because I think of all the help you get in the home with all of the children. 

So that’s the first thing that comes to my mind when I hear the word “sacrifice.”

And then in my early childhood “sacrifice” – the image that comes when I hear the word sacrifice – is sacrificing animals.  Sacrificing animals to gods. In my culture I belonged to a tribe named Igorots. These are indigenous peoples who live in the mountains up north of the Philippines. And they, before Christianity came, they were animists. And so these animal sacrifices – I actually never witnessed one but I know there are animals that are butchered and sacrificed, either to appease or to please the gods of harvest or the gods of healing. So that is one image that comes to me when I hear the word sacrifice, at least from my early childhood.

There was one day, I was in high school, it must have been a weekend, I think it was a weekend because we were all home.  And I hear this soft, what sounded like a soft conversation in the kitchen and all the doors were closed. So I cracked the door open to peek in and my mother was the only one in the kitchen. But she was sitting on a low stool with a pot in front of her and she was praying offering this cooked meat to .... I wasn’t very sure who she was praying for. But if I remember there was one relative who was very sick, and I think she was praying for her healing. So that was the first time I ever saw – at least in my family – do something like that.

I mean my father would have probably – if he had seen that, you know he was a priest, if he had seen that, he would have gone bonkers!  Because he was – my father was a poster boy for missionaries. His Christianity was such that the old traditions were—what we label these days as pagan—were wrong. You’re not supposed to do so. (Laughs)

Regular Sunday Schedule

8:00 a.m. Holy Eucharist
9:15 a.m. worship.together (Eucharist for preschool families)
9:15 a.m. Parish Forum & Christian Education (Kairos)
10:30 a.m. Choral Eucharist

Other Days

Morning prayer is offered at 7:30 a.m. weekdays, in the Mary Chapel.

Silent morning meditation is offered at 8:15 a.m. weekdays, in the Mary Chapel.

Mid-week Eucharist is offered at 12:15 p.m. Wednesdays, in the Mary Chapel.

Compline is offered at 7:00 p.m. on 2nd & 4th Wednesdays, in the Church.

Choral Evensong is offered at 5:00 p.m. on 1st Sundays, Oct.-June, in the Church.

We would love to have you join us.


This Episcopal church is located in the heart of the historic neighborhood of Chestnut Hill, five blocks west of Germantown Avenue at the corner of St. Martin’s Lane and West Willow Grove Avenue.

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