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About Us








About mystical ventures


Grounded in the Roman Catholic mystical tradition and the conviction that the earth sustains us in multiple ways, Mystical Ventures (MV) hopes to connect the dots for many peoples of varied interests and demonstrate how religious faith empowers us to understand our ecological environment. Mystical prayer connects with the food we eat, the animals that sustain us, the books we read, the cycles and sounds of nature and stewardship of the earth alongside our individual vocations and care for the poor.


Karen Howard, Ph.D., theology
Educator and Author                          

William Howard, Jr, D.D.S
Gentleman Farmer and Dentist



Mystical Ventures, according to the logo, is a place, a prayer and a philosophy of sustainable living. It is a venture that is couched in the rich tradition of the Christian way of living, one that pays attention to the lessons of those who have gone before us, especially the saints. It is about living off the land and giving back to the land. It is about leaving one’s little corner of the earth a little bit better than one found it. It is about stewardship and it is about our children’s heritage. All the while, it is also about learning the cycles of nature, the rhythms of the seasons, and how one day flows seamlessly into the next. It is also learning more about life by paying attention to the life cycles of plants and animals and all God’s various creatures.


Mystical Ventures is also our home in rural southeastern Massachusetts. Here, my husband, Bill, and I have lived for over 40 years, have raised our seven children, (and are now enjoying our beautiful nine grandchildren) have lived and loved and laughed and cried, all the while giving praise to God. We have prayed together, and like all married couples raising a family today, have planned together, regrouped together when plans went out the window, worried together, and have learned from each other. We have truly been blessed. Gardening and canning and putting up the harvest have accompanied our journey. We have raised chickens for eggs and meat for many years and more recently have begun raising goats for milk, cheese, yogurt, land management and pure pleasure. They are lovable creatures.  A few years ago, we put in a small orchard with apples and pears and peaches and plums and apricots and nut trees. We’ve had our share of dogs and cats, though recently we just lost our favorite indoor dog, an English Setter named Joey, and recently added a new dog, a crazy strong 15 month old Irish Setter puppy, whose name is Maverick (though his retired show name is Organized Chaos, which really suits him).  We also have two outdoor guardian dogs (Great White Pyrenees) Sophie and Jeremiah, for the goats. My in-laws have lived either with us or next door to us almost our whole married lives. My mother-in-law, Yvonne, went home to God a few years back and my father-in-law, Bill, Sr., who was the patriarch of the family, went home to join her and give prase to God last summer.   Again and again, life moves in cycles.


This website is a celebration and a reflection on the seasons of the year and the seasons of our lives as we are fashioned by an Almighty God and brought into this world to grow, mature and age in order to go back to God, with hopefully more understanding. While we are here, we also listen to others, some teaching us invaluable things about the earth, and some teaching us invaluable things about our God. We learn to pray and we allow this prayer to shape our days, months and years. We have been gifted with a wonderful planet and are called to be its stewards. With a little humility and a great deal of love and hard work, we can participate in creating a sustainable planet and thereby participate in creation unfolding as God intended. We have only to pay attention to its signs, sounds and rhythms.

Come and see!!!

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Then the Lord answered Job out of the whirlwind…
Were you there when I laid the foundation of the earth?
Tell me if you have understanding.
Who determined its measurements – surely you know!
Or who stretched the line upon it?
On what were its bases sunk,
Or who laid its cornerstone
when the morning stars sang together
and all the heavenly beings shouted for joy
Or who shut in the sea with doors
when it burst out from the womb? –
when I made the clouds its garment,
and thick darkness its swaddling band,
and prescribed bounds for it and set bars and doors,
and said, ‘Thus far shall you come and no farther,
and here shall your proud waves be stopped’?
Have you commanded the morning since your days began
and caused the dawn to know its place
So that it might take hold of the skirts of the earth
and the wicked be shaken out of it?
Have you entered into the springs of the sea
or walked in the recesses of the deep?
Have you entered the storehouses of the snow
Or have you seen the storehouses of the hail?

Has the rain a father, or who has begotten the drops of dew?
From whose womb did the ice come forth?
Do you know the ordinances of the heavens?
Can you establish their rule on earth?
Can you lift your voice up to the clouds,
So that a flood of waters may cover you,
Can you send forth lightening, so that they may go
and say to you, “Here we are”?
Who has put wisdom in the inward parts,

or given understanding to the mind?                             Job 38





Call to Prayer

Endow Groups

Endow pic

Endow Groups 



St. Veronica Guiliana


st veronica 3

The amazing story of St. Veronica 

St. Veronica Guiliani



Pope Francis

Eccl 3

For everything there is a

season, and a time for every

matter under heaven…..

Bill & Karen


Karen L. Howard, Ph.D.

     Boston College

     Chestnut Hill, MA 02467

     B.A., Theology, 1990;

     Ph.D. Theology, Holocaust Studies, 1997

     Currently teaching at Boston College;

     taught at Merrimack College in

     No. Andover, MA 01845

     for fifteen years,

     and served as a CRE/DRE for

     Archdiocese of Boston parishes

     for twenty-five years.


William Howard, Jr., D.D.S.

     Boston College

     Chestnut Hill, MA 02467

     B.S. Biology, 1967

     Loyola University Dental School,

     Chicago, IL;   D.D.S., 1971

     United States Army, 1963-1966

     Honorable Discharge, 1969

     Retired from active dentistry

     on December 31, 2012; worked at

     Brooklawn Dental Health Clinic

     in New Bedford, MA 02745 for

     over forty years. 


Were You There ?