Remembering … all these things which have come to pass for us: the cross, the tomb, the resurrection on the third day, the ascension into heaven, the sitting at the right hand of God the Father, the second and glorious coming.

Thine own of Thine own we Offer unto Thee, in behalf of all and for all!

From: The Anaphora Prayer of the Liturgy of St. John Chrysostom1


My name is Nicole M. Roccas, an author, trauma survivor, and (since late 2021) a certified trauma-informed coach (learn more about those services here). I’m also a practicing Orthodox Christian on a perpetual quest to bridge what I know of God’s goodness with the darkness of trauma experiences.

I started this Substack in November 2022 as a place to write and build community around issues of faith, trauma, and memory. At the time, I was keen on writing a book that would articulate an Orthodox Christian theology of trauma, and thought this would be a good space to polish my thinking and research in that area. I was right, but the book itself is proving harder to write—mostly because of professional commitments that make the time and focus of deep work difficult.

But I’m still making (slow) steps in that direction, and rebuilding my regular writing practice little by little. It’s all part of the healing (and writing!) journey!

What’s in a name?

Remembering all these things…

For years, this phrase has been an anchor for me.

It’s lifted directly from the words of the “offering” or “lifting up” prayer from the Orthodox Liturgy that speaks of remembering “all these things” that have come to pass for us and for our salvation. It goes on to recount a handful of “saving” events of the Gospel message, some of them (like the Cross) extremely dark, before offering the whole narrative—and ourselves—up to God for sanctification.

To me, this prayer is an icon of what human memory—such as it is in a deeply wounded world—can be oriented toward. It reminds me that memories from the past—even those that are painful and bitter—are not to be erased, silenced, minimized, glossed over with a smile or platitude. No, they are to be remembered, re-encounter, offered, lifted up for the sake of transformation, returned to the same God who gave us the mysterious gift of Life-through-death in the first place. And in making this journey—in learning to inhabit the holy dimension of memory—we can begin to encounter wholeness.

But “all these things” is also an apt description of writing—or mine, anyway. I often write about trauma and theology, but I also write about anything I see fit to explore—the “all these things” of my life.

To be a writer is to enter into a life-long scavenger hunt for the unlikely connections between disparate objects, events, and thoughts. To gather “all these things” together for the making of meaning and the delight of awareness.

So, in thanks for joining me all these things. Feel free to say hello by dropping a line in the comments on posts!

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The Liturgy of Saint John Chrysostom dates back to the fifth century and is attributed to the titular saint, who seved as Archbishop of Constantinople. It is the most oft-celebrated mass/divine liturgy among Orthodox Christians and continues to be used to this day throughout most of the year.

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scattered offerings on faith, trauma, and memory by Nicole M. Roccas


Author, reader, trauma-informed coach at