Celebrity Blogger Week: Neva Rae Fox

February 3, 2015
Tim Schenck

Welcome to Celebrity Blogger Week! We look forward to introducing you to all of our Celebrity Bloggers and some other key people on the Lent Madness team including our Bracket Czar, Resident Foodie, and the ever-mysterious Maple Anglican.

We kick things off with first-timer, Neva Rae Fox. Right at the start, the Supreme Executive Committee feels compelled to squash the rumor that Neva Rae is an SEC mole at the Episcopal Church Center in New York. Though, as we think about it, she may well be a mole sent to infiltrate Lent Madness. Hmmmm.

In any case, we're delighted to have her on board this year and, as she answered the SEC's Celebrity Blogger Week questions in record time, she is the first to be highlighted.

unnamedNeva Rae Fox has been a Lent Madness groupie since its debut and has the complete set of mugs to prove it. This is her first turnout as a Celebrity Blogger, and while incredibly honored to be asked, she can’t stop stressing about it. When she isn’t serving as the Public Affairs Officer for The Episcopal Church, she devotes a lot of time to local, regional and national organizations and groups – some you have heard of, and some you haven’t. She is active in her own Episcopal Church, where, among other groups and duties, she serves on the communications committee (imagine that!). Neva Rae loves music but can’t carry a tune; she is an avid opera/classical music devotee, but can also be spotted at Eric Clapton, Buddy Guy, BB King or Steely Dan concerts. She lives in New Jersey (as we say in the Garden State – “You Got a Problem with That?”) with her wonderful husband and two cats, one of whom, it is rumored, has been selected as a 2015 Episcocat.

What do you most love about the extraordinary honor of being a Ceunnamedlebrity Blogger (besides global adulation)?
I’m looking forward to the goodies — the mugs and shirts and stuff. Also, I sincerely believe that Lent Madness is a) an ideal way to learn about those whom we should emulate and b) Lent Madness helps to lighten up a solemn season.

What is the quirkiest thing you've learned about one of your saints and how does this inspire your faith?
I was struck with the fact that my travels followed David Oakerhater. Florida, Oklahoma City, Nashotah House — all these places still had Oakerhater’s impressions, and that made an impression on me.

Downton Abbey or The Walking Dead and why?
Downton Abbey — at least there is a future there.

Besides Lent Madness, what do you most look forward to in the season of Lent?
Throughout Lent, I wear only purple or shades of purple nail polish on all the fingers and the toes.

As to her photo, Neva Rae remarked, "As the daughter of a postal worker, I pledge that neither rain nor sleet nor snow will keep me from my duties as a Celebrity Blogger for Lent Madness." We're delighted to hear this and thrilled to have Neva Rae onboard the good ship Lent Madness.


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47 comments on “Celebrity Blogger Week: Neva Rae Fox”

  1. Looking forward to reading your blogs.
    It's also nice to get to know the person behind the name we see all the time.

  2. Good choice, gentleman. As I live in nearby Staten Island ( Hey, YOU have a problem with that?), I am happy that a local with be doing some colorful commentary.

  3. I live in New York but work in many of the theatrical venues in New Jersey. Look forward to reading the blogs of this Jersey girl! Are there really Episcopalians in New Jersey?

    1. yes, there is at least one-wait, make that 4 Episcopalians in New Jersey that i know of. one is my youngest daughter, Barbara Crafton and her husband Q are 2 more and my friend debbie from the geranium farm is another. new jersey is overrun with Episcopalians!

  4. Welcome Neva Rae, I hope your shoveling won't keep you from enjoying time to work on your blogs posts. We are digging out here in Illinois (Everyone has a problem with that!) , too.

  5. my apologies for suggesting some kind of clerical conspiracy that would restrict bloggers to only those in fine robes..I have been adequately deflated

  6. Ah yes. Merton!
    One of my favorite presenters, who shall remain anonymous for reasons that shall become obvious, famously said -- after assigning Merton to be read before his presentation, "Merton is so dense even Merton doesn't understand what he just wrote!"
    I've also heard that Merton grew beyond Seven Storey and stopped liking it himself; but that one may be urban legend.

  7. Welcome next-in-line Celebrity Blogger.Ms. Neva Rae. You may indeed be from New Jersey but you;got a real Southern sounding name. Southerners do love their double names, i,e,.Johnnie Mae, Betty Lou....but then there's Billy Bob Thornton and I don't think he's a Southerner. But I digress. I am impressed with your credentials that make you deserving of the blogger honor, in particular being thePR officer for the Church and definitely as an Altar Guild member at your church and we all know which office holds all the power. Yes indeedy-doo! Welcome and blog on Ms. Neva Rae.

  8. I am a southerner and have had to fight to be called by my double name all my life, maybe because my middle name is a boy's name. There are plenty of double names that are that way 'tho. Neva Rae must have southern roots.

  9. Friends -- thank you but my name Neva Rae is not Southern. I am a daughter of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania and have lived in New Jersey most of my life. Both are family names. I answer to Neva or Neva Rae -- whichever helps people remember it best.

  10. Welcome back, Neva Rae! Had so much fun sharing Saintly Kitsch on Kamehaha with you last year!

  11. Neva -
    I tried to get our priest to do "The Theology of Star Trek" for Lent but, alas, the calendar was already planned. Maybe next year!

  12. Elizabeth Ann Seton moved to Italy when her husband became ill, where they were held in quarantine and where he died. She remained in Italy and was helped by an Italian family where she was introduced to Roman Catholicism. Since it is not much different than the Anglican church, she probably found something there that resonated with her in the faith of the people who helped her. While that may not be an official explanation it is one that has some credence. Often people are drawn to a specific faith in their encounters with loving, compassionate people.

  13. Sharon, I have a personal story that supports your post. My husband and his brother are cradle Episcopalian. When my brother-in-law was in Viet Nam, the chaplain was Roman Catholic and according to Ric was very much a comfort, help, spiritual leader to the Marines. He followed them into combat. After Viet Nam he did the necessary "conversion".

  14. I love these two stories. We could each be the person that someone seeking could follow into the faith.

  15. As a descendent of the Seton family I have a special interest in Mother Seton, and have been reading (off and on) Joan Barthel's "American Saint: The Life of Elizabeth Seton" which spends a bit of space on her struggles with the change. My sense is that both the Episcopal Church and the Roman Catholic church have evolved a lot in the past centuries. One change we have experienced is having the Eucharist more available than when it was only offered a couple of times a month. Apparently it was appealing for her to be able to partake more than once a day. Of course her experience in Italy and friends there were a big influence also. It is an interesting book. Maya Angelou wrote the introduction and you get a sense of her struggles also with the "powers that be" in the Catholic Church. I would even say she was a feminist for her time.

  16. Totally agree on the hymns. Just a reminder for GC;Austin is lovely and cool right now, but won’t be this summer. Like they say bring cool confortable clothing, a medium weight parka for use in the air conditioning and an ice pack for your head any time you spend outside. And ear plugs because without doubt we’ll sing , The Church is One Foundation! (right, we get it)

  17. Thanks for this. The photo of me was taken at one of my favorite places - The Metropolitan Opera in New York City.

  18. As a fellow opera fan, I look forward to reading about your saint! I do hope it is someone musical. I do feel a need to take issue with you on parsnips. They are one of my favorite vegetables and I am disappointed that you are perpetuating the stereotype that they are bland and unpalatable. If you roast them with butter, a little maple syrup, salt and pepper, they are delicious! Finally, I am from Minnesota (and a Vikings fan) and I believe that the Patriots will prevail on Sunday! SKOL!

    1. Naomi - as a diehard Eagles fan, I am pleasantly shocked we got this far. FYI I root for the Vikings when they are not playing the Eagles. In fact I have a Vikings sweatshirt that my football friends know it's football, my opera friends think it's Wagner, and my comic book friends think it's Thor. Love it.

        1. If you are a Steelers' fan, then you should be rooting for the other Pennsylvania team. That's what I do when the Steelers play.

  19. Go Eagles! (I live in New England...and enthusiastically cheer for all opponents of That Team.)
    I'd very much like to attend your dinner with my fave musicians Bach, Handel, and Purcell. I would gladly serve at table or help in the kitchen, as long as the conversation is clearly audible.
    See you in Austin!

    1. Margaret - join us at the table, and join our lively conversation. I would love to hear what they think about another Englishman who is a great musician and a favorite of mine - Eric Clapton.

  20. I'm new to Lenten Madness, but originally from Broad St., Philadelphia, in the 1950s, where the Episcopal Church had confession, and the boy's choir sang at the major service, and I as a girl chanted at the early service. My saint to have breakfast with would have been Mother Teresa, because I do like to get right at helping people when I wake up, and stay at it all day, and I would have served her oatmeal and a banana, with bran muffins and home made jam. Is there still a Wanamakers store, my mother worked there when you had to dress up with gloves and a hat to come to work! Greetings!

  21. My feelings about those hymns is exactly the opposite -- I could go for a long time without having to listen to yet another badly sung rendition of Amazing Grace. And The Church's One Foundation is on my funeral hymn list -- hopefully not needed for a long time!

    1. I hope not for a long time either. I too tire of Amazing Grace - it reminds me of all the times I heard it, good and bad, following 9/11. All I am saying is that it has to be on a Heaven Top Ten List because it is, indeed, sung all the time.

    2. Wanamakers, unfortunately, is no longer there. Ditto the train station, although the Reading Train Station Market is there. Mother Teresa was a wonderful person.

  22. Welcome back! The dinner with J.S. Bach, G. Handel, and H. Purcell sounds fascinating, I would like to hear their opinions on Rock, Rap, and Country too! My chorus is performing sections from Bach's Mass in B minor, so I'd also ask him for some extra coaching ;), and Opera cake sounds like it would be delicious!

    1. I was given an Opera Cake for Christmas, made by a friend of mine who is a world-class chef. Yummy! Bach's Mass in B Minor is magnificent. I was playing Bach's Christmas Oratorio from Advent I to New Year's Day.

  23. Dear Neva Rae,
    I enjoyed your bio & look forward to reading your posts on behalf of "your" saints! Thank you for expressing your musical mix of interests (esp opera and Clapton).
    I have a request for you. You seem to a person who could make a pitch to the SEC for an item to stock at the Lentorium. Neva Rae, would you consider advocating (in a way that is just shy of insisting) that the SEC authorize (that's a power-word that might resonate with them) the Lent Madness organ score to be scored and printed so that musicians could access its magnificence & play its exuberance? If you could, I suggest you play upon egos of the SEC. Ask them to think of what a powerful PR tool this musical score could be for Lent Madness. It IS, after all, "When the Saints Go MARCHing In," and perhaps that play on words might play upon the generosity and imagination of the SEC. One never knows, though. Perhaps copyright issues will prevail, and this request will be for naught. Thank you for any persuasive help you might be able to provide. And thank you for your good work on behalf of all the saints.