Pat Mingarelli outlines a passion for nature photography in Episode 052

Today I am interviewing a man who has found renewed purpose for his life by sharing nature photographs with others, and he does it through emailed devotionals to help connect people to God as well.

Pat Mingarelli is originally from upstate New York, but now lives in eastern Nebraska, which he describes as being an hour away from nothing and a day away from everything.

He worked as a photographer for a  Christian magazine for many years. He and some of his coworkers would go backpacking every year, which gave Pat an opportunity to invest some extended time outdoors where he really came to appreciate God as a creator.

Eventually, he started his own website called the Visual Bible Verse of the Day to share messages from the Bible as well as photos he has taken over the years.

Pat uses professional camera equipment to capture his images, but he encourages others to use their cell phones to capture outdoor scenes and the beauty of nature. It’s a way for people to slow down while allowing their souls to be captivated by the beauty around them.

Nature photography is something I truly enjoyed early in my journalism career as well. I lived in Alamogordo, N.M., when I was stationed in the U.S. Air Force. There were plenty of desert scenes that were vastly different from what I grew up enjoying in Wisconsin. Yet, the mountains were 30 minutes away, and that opened the door to a whole new environment to photograph.

For people who would like to get into photography as a hobby, Pat offered some good advice on selecting equipment, and explained why he prefers Cannon cameras over Nikons, which is what I used for many years.

Pat has a degree in photojournalism, which taught him not only the best way to take photos, but also how to tell a story with the images he captured. He suggests that people over 50 take a photography class at a local community college as a way to refine their picture-taking capabilities quickly.

In the Bible, there are a lot of references to being in nature. Pat reminds us that Jesus often liked to get away to a secluded place, and spent a lot of time in the wilderness. It’s a wonderful way to escape the noise and distractions of the day as well as the stress of daily living.

Pat is particularly enamored with taking pictures of pathways. They often demonstrate light at the end of a tunnel or the narrow path Jesus instructed his followers to take. Pathways also depict mystery, choices and wonder.

Taking pictures of things you see outdoors is a practical way to remember the significance of a spiritual encounter you enjoyed that day, as well as a special message you may have heard from God. Every time you look at the photo, you are reminded of that message.

People can sign up to receive a daily devotional from Pat or one that comes once or twice a week. Just visit his website at You can also download a free guide which offers 10 quick tips to improve your photography.

Pat published a book titled “Drawing Near: Meeting God in His Creation.” It is a 40-day devotional in which he showcases a beautiful outdoor image, discusses a Bible verse and puts it in context. He also leaves room for readers to journal their own thoughts. The book is available on Amazon and in other bookstores.

That’s all I have for this week’s show. If you’d like help in identifying a purpose for your life or to get help planning your next steps, I’m offering a complimentary brainstorming session to members of the Forward From 50 Facebook community. For details, connect with me on Facebook or visit

I’ll have another inspirational interview on the next episode of the Forward From 50 podcast. Thanks for listening. If you like this show, please consider leaving a review wherever you download the episodes.

If you order Pat’s book from the link above, Forward From 50 may earn a small commission at no extra cost to you.