Celebrity Blogger Week: Penny Nash

February 26, 2014
Tim Schenck

Ever since 2011, the first year we invited four Celebrity Bloggers to participate in the Faithful Four (because Tim was exhausted from writing all the bios himself), Penny Nash has been part of the Lent Madness team. In other words, this will be the fourth straight Lent that she's offered us a Penny for her thoughts. Which is a ridiculous statement but we figured we'd leave all the tri-cornered Colonial Williamsburg references to Penny herself. Read on.

DSC_0002Penny Nash, one of the four original Celebrity Bloggers, is still somewhat amazed that she is the associate rector at Bruton Parish Episcopal Church in downtown Colonial Williamsburg, Virginia. When people ask her what women priests wore in the Colonial Era, her response is, “Pants.” She is a contributor to a lectionary series of sermons and reflections by a group called Homelists for the Homeless. The first two volumes, Hungry, and You Fed Me/Year C and Naked, and You Clothed Me/Year A are out and will be followed by the third volume (for Year B) in the fall of 2014; Letters to Me: Conversations with a Younger Self, a collection of essays for young adults; as well as to two Forward Movement “Day by Day” books. Known in the social media world as Penelopepiscopal, Penny posts prayers or reflections, accompanied by her own photography daily at her blog One Cannot Have Too Large a Party. Friend her on Facebook or follow her on Twitter@penelopepiscopl.

How has Lent Madness transformed your life?
Lent Madness has given me the strength to get up and do what needs to be done -- no, wait, that was Powdermilk Buiscuits. Plus, anybody who has ever been around me for five minutes knows I’m not shy. No, Lent Madness has transformed me into a fierce and focused competitor who spends hours watching the voting while composing snappy zingers to send to…wait, that’s probably not something to be proud of. OK, I give up. Perhaps people could make suggestions in the comments about how Lent Madness has transformed my life (in a good way, please).

Obviously being a Celebrity Blogger is your greatest lifetime achievement. What perks have you enjoyed as a result of your DSC_0081status?

Besides receiving free mugs and brackets, people recognize me everywhere I go, and almost always in a good way, except for…well, never mind about that. It happened just once. Right. OK, for instance, last year on Ash Wednesday as I was preparing for our “Ashes on the Go” distribution, a visitor from Alaska (!) came to the altar rail and said, “Hi! I’ve never received ashes from a Real Celebrity Blogger before!” That was pretty big. But the best perk was when another visitor (we have a lot of those here in Colonial Williamsburg) came out of the church one Sunday morning and introduced herself to me as a member of the parish where Lent Madness super fans Hope and Skye are also members. So, being a Celebrity Blogger brings me into the circles of other famous and cool people.

What do you hope the Lent Madness public will learn from the lives of the saints?

One of the great things about saints, and particularly about this year’s crop of saints in Lent Madness 2014, is that they are both normal people and also extraordinary people. I hope that each member of the Lent Madness public will find a saint or two who inspire them to do something extraordinary themselves for the love of God and in the name of Jesus Christ.

Someday, when you become the answer on Jeopardy, what will the question be?
"Who discovered a magical recipe for fudge brownies that helps people lose weight by eating two of them every day?"


* indicates required

Recent Posts



23 comments on “Celebrity Blogger Week: Penny Nash”

  1. Welcome Penny("penny for your thoughts". owww.) I'm glad to hear that you support the idea of saints as both extraordinary AND normal people....If you didn't already know, I'm driving everybody nuts here with my refusal to accept Fred McFeeley Rogers being ineligible to receive the Golden Halo. the SEC is probably tired of my incessant harping(pun intended!!!!)about this, but hey, I don't tilt at every windmill that comes my way so when I do, I continue tilting!
    anyway, welcome o celebrity blogger! I've heard good things about Powdermilk biscuits. I wonder if they're available in Michigan?

  2. and I'm one of the others campaigning for Fred Rogers to be on the bracket. I first met you at st. Margaret's in carrollton, GA years ago. I was visiting . I live in new Orleans. I like reading your take on the saints. and I do think Fred Rogers is eligible now because the SEC said that a Presbyterian church is involved in Lent Madness this year!

    1. Hi Linda, please accept my apologies for having gone off on you, I misinterpreted your comment re Fred Rogers. My bad. I withdraw the pox.
      embarrassedly yours,

  3. I want your next book to be "Nashing of Teeth". You probably already considered and rejected that.

  4. Use your powers to persuade the SEC to make Fred Rogers eligible before Madeleine has a hissy fit. She is a sensitive soul who is getting a tad surly! At last...a Bruton Parish priest to whom I can relate. As a 1959 graduate of Hampton University (then Hampton Institute), I sang the MESSIAH with the school choir at Bruton Parish at Christmas and Easter. Needless to say, as a music teacher, I vowed that no high school choir of mine would ever sing the Hallelujah Chorus. Welcome back!

    1. Too late Aleathia, I just had one. as it turns out it was misdirected @ Linda.... apology forthcoming....See step 11 in AA: "continued to take personal inventory and when we were wrong promptly admitted it."

    2. Thanks! I am proud to represent Bruton here at Lent Madness! But I have to say that I have absolutely now power to sway the SEC in any direction. I am, however, wearing my cardigan sweater today.

  5. Ran out of room.....we sang the "big M" twice a year for my five years (my sainted mother always told people I hadn't flunked anything.....that Music was a 5 year major...sensitive soul...) That was 5 years x 2 at Bruton Parish ALONE!! Never mind that we also sang it at Kecoughtan VA Hospital and in Norfolk....total 30 times. Now we've got Linda siding with Madeleine so HELP !!

  6. Penny....you have unlimited powers as you're the longest running contributor so you can help dear Madeleine whom I do admire for being a good sport. Howsomever, do not give up your pursuit of getting Fred Rogers.....while we're at it, I did love Eddie Murphy's take-off on Mr. Rogers' neighborhood on Saturday Night Live.....D'ya suppose? .....Naw! He'd never get approved. Oh well !!!

  7. I haven't commented for a couple of days, but as always, reading each Bio gets me more excited for Lent Madness to start!!! I just got my copy of Saintly Scorecard (thanks Heidi) and am soooo looking forward to reading it and participating again this year. I forgot to mention in an earlier comment that I am a Mainer and so proud that Heidi is a blogger again this year. Looking forward to more Bio's.

  8. Oh goody, Glenis, I'm glad you received the scorecard. I've got some poster brackets arriving soon. Does Grace, Bath, need one?

  9. Hope and Skye are eager for their third season of Lent Madness to begin! They were in Bruton Church before Christmas, but unfortunately didn't cross paths with one of the original LM Celebrity Bloggers!!!