Holiness in our midst – Session 34

Holiness in our Midst


Father’s Day will be especially poignant for me this year. It is the one that my father would have turned 100. On that day, I will recall again his best piece of fatherly advice. Growing up, whenever all seemed hopeless in my little world, Dad would sit with me, wait until I had calmed down, and say, “Everything isn’t wrong, Janis. Unitize, just unitize.”

Unitize was term he brought home from work. My father, Lloyd Pyle of Denver, CO, spent more than 25 years with the National Cash Register Co. During his retirement, he collected and repaired vintage models of cash registers. In his early working years, he went on service calls to repair the machines. He advanced to supervising servicemen. His last position was teaching the repair of the largest electronic banking machines. When he taught, he would present his students with a malfunctioning machine. Their first inclination was to tear the whole thing apart. “Unitize,” he would tell them. To unitize is to diagnose which system or part needs immediate attention. The whole machine can shut down with just one missing or broken part.

Like he did with his students, he would ask me analyze what was troubling me, like a doctor seeking an accurate diagnosis. He would help me pinpoint the hurtful aspect of a broken relationship or break down my homework project into small doable parts. Still under his tutelage, I would chart a course of action until the relationship was back in balance or the project completed. His memory still echoes through the years, when I use his piece of advice to solve the daily problems along my path. Unitizing still keeps my life manageable.

STORY CIRCLE QUESTION: What is your best piece of fatherly advice?


  1. Read the above reflection.
  2. Write a journal reflection on pieces of advice you learned from your father. What was the most important one? What life lessons from him (or a father figure in your life) that you would like to pass along to the next generation?


  1. Read aloud Session XXXIV.
  2. Ask each person to answer the Story Circle Question.