Saturday, May 19 9:30am-4:00pm
Join a diverse group of community members from Southern Oregon for a day of exploring, shaping, and sharing life stories. Set in Ashland’s Green Springs mountains, the retreat will offer participants a chance to explore life experiences in a restful and contemplative setting. The retreat will include:
- Creative exercises to help you recall and reflect on your own life experiences
- A process to encourage compassionate listening
- Instruction to help you shape and communicate your story
- Interesting people whose rich stories will deepen your connection to others
- Good coffee and baked goods
- A delicious lunch
- A beautiful setting among ponderosa pines and fields of wild flowers
The retreat is an extension of The Hearth’s true storytelling series and offers a chance for community members to appreciate the variety of life experiences that exist within our community. The day will be facilitated by Hearth founder Mark Yaconelli. For more information go here. All proceeds will support The Hearth: Reals Stories by Regular Folks, a true storytelling series that raises money for non-profits in Southern Oregon through seasonal, communal storytelling events.
To register email Mark Yaconelli at firstname.lastname@example.org.
*Scholarships are available. No one will be turned away for lack of funds.
I facilitate a true storytelling series titled “The Hearth.” Our spring theme is “Feast or Famine” and includes stories like “Searching for a Table, Survival Training, An Alaska Winter, Waitressing through Despair, Love and Food, and Coming to my Senses. The event takes place from 7 to 9pm at First Congregational Church, 717 Siskiyou Blvd. Cost is $5 and all proceeds will go to Rogue Valley Farm to School. Storytellers include Matt Damon, David Young, Juliet Grable, DavidPaul Doyle, and others. Music by Duane Whitcomb, Wendi Stanek, Steve Shaw, and special guest Dianne Strong. Hosted by Mark Yaconelli. If you’re in the area, show up.
I attended the Maundy-Thursday service at our church last night (by the way “Maunday” means “commandment” in Latin and refers to Jesus’ commandment to love and serve others with humility). It was a good old-fashioned small town potluck followed by a beautiful service of candles, somber, heartfelt singing, and some simple rituals that evoked grief and loss. A woman sitting in front of me cried against her young son’s neck, wiping her tears with his hair. Once again I was reminded of all the grief that we harbor, secretly within us.
I spoke with Will, a man who spent many years in a simple, poor, spiritual community practicing prayer. I spoke to him about an upcoming trip to Assisi in Italy. In response Will told me about being in Assisi on Maundy Thursday many years ago. In Assisi they have a procession in which they take down the body of Christ from the cross in the San Rufino chapel. The body is then processed through town, stopping at various cloistered communities where the body is kissed and prayed over by the Sisters and Brothers of the various communities. My friend told me as the body is processed there is only a simple drum beat as thousands of people sing, “We’re sorry, we did not recognize you.” Will and I both teared up as he told me this. No need to speak any further. Continue reading