Meditations on ascending & rising (and some songs about rocks & stones as belated reflection from last week)

And Jesus just sort of floated away…kind of like Mary Poppins. — Nadia Bolz-Weber

When ancient Hebrew writers talk about geographic locations and spatial relationships in the physical world, they often use these physical descriptions to represent a higher, transcendent reality. For example, death and emptiness are down or under in Sheol. And because God is transcendent, or above all, his space is described metaphorically as being above, or up, or in the heavens. The most important thing to see here is that God is not ultimately creating a supernatural place where he lives separated from humans. God’s vision for Heaven and Earth—God’s space and humanity’s space—is that both would be fully integrated as one. God’s space and our space are to overlap, “on Earth as it is in Heaven” … — Bibleproject.com, full article: https://bibleproject.com/blog/the-ascension-of-jesus/

Kites rise highest against the wind – not with it. — Winston Churchill

An individual has not started living until he can rise above the narrow confines of his individualistic concerns to the broader concerns of all humanity.— Martin Luther King, Jr.

We may stumble and fall but shall rise again; it should be enough if we did not run away from the battle.— Mahatma Gandhi

Do you wish to rise? Begin by descending. You plan a tower that will pierce the clouds? Lay first the foundation of humility.— Saint Augustine

When you rise in the morning, give thanks for the light, for your life, for your strength. Give thanks for your food and for the joy of living. If you see no reason to give thanks, the fault lies in yourself. — Tecumseh

The most glorious moments in your life are not the so-called days of success, but rather those days when out of dejection and despair you feel rise in you a challenge to life, and the promise of future accomplishments. — Gustave Flaubert


I died as a mineral and became a plant,
I died as plant and rose to animal,
I died as animal and I was Man.
Why should I fear? When was I less by dying?
Yet once more I shall die as Man, to soar
With angels blest; but even from angelhoodI must pass on:
all except God doth perish.
When I have sacrificed my angel-soul,
I shall become what no mind e’er conceived.
Oh, let me not exist! for Non-existence
Proclaims in organ tones,
To Him we shall return.

— Rumi, “I Died as a Mineral”,
as translated in The Mystics of Islam, 1914,
edited by Reynold Alleyne Nicholson, p. 125

SONGS ABOUT ROCKS & STONES:

SONGS ABOUT ASCENDING (and a playlist of songs about overcoming: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xo1VInw-SKc&list=PLpxWKmiR9bcN6PZ6clo7QcU42f0hT0EmV)

STAY: A Blessing for Ascension DayJan Richardson

I know how your mind rushes ahead
trying to fathom what could follow this.
What will you do, where will you go, how will you live?

You will want to outrun the grief.
You will want to keep turning toward the horizon,
watching for what was lost to come back,
to return to you and never leave again.

For now hear me when I say
all you need to do is to still yourself
is to turn toward one another
is to stay.

Wait and see what comes
to fill the gaping hole in your chest.
Wait with your hands open
to receive what could never come
except to what is empty and hollow.

You cannot know it now,
cannot even imagine what lies ahead,
but I tell you the day is coming
when breath will fill your lungs
as it never has before
and with your own ears you will hear words
coming to you new and startling.
You will dream dreams
and you will see the world ablaze with blessing.

Wait for it.
Still yourself.
Stay.


Just as the blessed Buddhas and the great bodhisattvas have generated the mind of great awakening, I too shall, from now until I arrive at the heart of awakening, generate the awakening mind in order that I may save those who are not saved, free those who are not free, relieve those who are not relieved, and help thoroughly transcend sorrow those who have not thoroughly transcended sorrow. —
— from Shantideva’s ‘Guide to the Bodhisattva’s Way of Life’

 



Originally, you were clay.
From being mineral, you became vegetable.
From vegetable, you became animal,
and from animal, man.
During these periods man did not know where he was going,
but he was being taken on a long journey nonetheless.
And you have to go through a hundred different worlds yet.
— Rumi, alternate version, as quoted in Multimind, 1986, by Robert Ornstein

On ASCENSION: Commentary

Commonly called the ascension, the belief that Jesus “ascended” into Heaven, has been essential to followers of Jesus for almost 2,000 years (e.g. The Nicene Creed, 325 A.D.). But what does it mean that Jesus “ascended into Heaven”? Did Jesus take off into outer space? Is the point of the ascension that Jesus floated away into the clouds, or is it something else?
    … as we have seen, this almost certainly does not mean floating off into space one day when we die. Instead it means joining our human lives into God’s divine work of spreading his word and life here on Earth. It is about declaring that “your will, not my will” be done on Earth (humanity’s space) as it is in Heaven (God’s space) … This strong, ongoing life means getting to know the God of love in the deepest way—so that our imaginations and affections can be transformed as we’re liberated to love God and love our neighbor … We are invited to ascend into this way of living.
— Bibleproject.com (entire article: https://bibleproject.com/blog/the-ascension-of-jesus/)

The Way of the Risen Christ leads his disciples to the Ascension, when he returns once again to the Father. In this image Jesus ascends as the yogi, who is seated in deep meditation and self realization. — Jyoti Sahi

Now listen carefully, the Ascension story is not about geography. It is not about where Jesus went. And the Ascension story is not about gravity. It is not about levitation. It is a simplistic misreading to think it is describing an unaided space launch. As a piece of biblical imagery it is probably related to a similar Old Testament story where the prophet Elijah is taken up into heaven in a whirlwind, with “a chariot of fire and horses of fire”
    … It is not about space travel. It is about a growing, wider, spiritual vision. … This story is about learning to let go. That is what those disciples had to do. They had to “let go” of the Jesus they wanted to contain, to hang onto … Like those disciples, we must continue to discover that truth, at different levels, throughout our lives. We human beings have a remarkable capacity for making idols, for hanging too tightly onto whatever has been the best and most significant experience we have known.
    … Positive or negative, what is the primary stuck-place for you today? What particular idol do you most need to turn your back on this day? What internal constriction most limits you from entering the freedom you have been given, from sharing the love of Christ which affirms and strengthens each of us? What do we hold on to which keeps us from discovering the power of our humanity – the humanity Jesus shared and exalted in his Ascension to the Father? Whenever we let go, we ascend; we rise to a new place on the hierarchy of spiritual maturity. In such ways we move along the road on a journey that has been called the … Way.

—Rev Jo-Ann Murphy, full article:  http://sseccg.org/may-17-getting-un-stuck-rev-jo-ann-murphy/

After speaking with his disciples, a cloud surrounds Jesus and he disappears from their sight. This cloud is a reminder of the transfiguration and represents the Shekhinah-glory – the sign of God’s presence. The day of Ascension is celebrated in the Church Year 40 days after Easter. On this day we celebrate Christ’s entry into glory and the taking up of his heavenly reign at the right hand of the Father.
    We may not be equipped with a gift of ministry like evangelism, that is, we may not be specially endowed with that particular gift, but we are all supported in the business of testimony. Under the sovereign will of God, our words, direct or indirect, will find appropriate soil. So, like the sower, let us sow. — Rev Bryan Findlayson, entire article: http://www.lectionarystudies.com/studyot/ascensionot.html

Thus, Missionary Sunday {also called Ascension Sunday in Catholic, Orthodox and Protestant traditions] challenges the church to remember that the Living God is not a village God with a tribal ethic, existing for our concerns alone and confined to our corner of the world. The Living God is a missionary God, a sending God whose love knows no ethnic or geographic boundaries or limitations.
    In his book, Strength to Love, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. states that “one of the great tragedies of man’s long trek along the highway of history has been the limiting of neighborly concern to tribe, race, class, or nation. The God of the early Old Testament was a tribal god and the ethic was tribal. The consequences of this narrow group centered attitude is that no one really minds what happens to those outside of his or her group. If an American is concerned only about his nation, he will not be concerned about the peoples of Asia, Africa or South America.”
   … I am grateful for an evolving “bifocal vision which is a balance between nearsighted and farsighted vision. Nearsighted vision concerns itself with needs which are close to home, while farsighted vision is concerned with expansion — looking beyond the immediate context to the world of need and opportunity outside our normal sphere of influence to take part in God’s global action.
   …. Balancing breadth of vision with depth of impact is still a challenge. None of us has the emotional or spiritual capacity to respond to every need we learn about in the world, but we must not allow that to cause us to take on an attitude of apathy and indifference. It is easy to become overwhelmed by world events such as the AIDS crisis in Africa, the rape of women in Sudan, the eradication of malaria, world hunger, economic injustice, exploitation, and homelessness. But our limitations do not have to limit our faithfulness. We can act in faithful ways in spite of our limitations. We may not be able to change the world single-handedly, but we can make a difference in the world one hand at a time. The direction of the apostles was of primary importance then and now. Start where you are at the moment and take the message outward and watch it ripple as a pebble thrown into a pond, moving beyond your city, to regional influence, to worldwide impact. As the Spirit worked through their compassionate responses to the Gospel to change the world, may that same Spirit empower us to go and do likewise.
African American Lectionary, full article: http://www.theafricanamericanlectionary.org/PopupLectionaryReading.asp?LRID=37

… And then I read N.T. Wright’s Surprised by Hope: Rethinking Heaven, the Resurrection, and the Mission of the Church and his chapter on the Ascension and I changed my whole thinking about it.  Basically the problem is when we think of Heaven as a physical place, rather than another dimension..or the realm of God.  Basically heaven and earth in biblical cosmology are not two different locations within the same continuum of space or matter.  They are two different dimensions of God’s good creation.  And the point about heaven is twofold.   First, heaven relates to earth tangentially so that the one who is in heaven can be present simultaneously anywhere and everywhere on earth:  the ascension therefore means that Jesus is available, accessible, without people having to travel to a particular spot on earth to find him.  Second, heaven is, as it were, the control room for earth; it is the CEO’s office, the place from which instructions are given.  “All authority is given to me,” said Jesus at the end of Matthew’s gospel, “in heaven and on earth.”  ( p. 111). When he ascended, Jesus joined God and he is with God, and so in fact, his Ascension brings him closer to us than when when he was on earth and bound by space and time. When Jesus took his place  at the right hand side of God, he was no longer bound by space and  time and so now is accessible to all of us, not just his first century disciples.

…then my words, held at tongues tip,
prepared themselves to at a moment’s notice
ascend alongside the wind
and soar daringly into your ears.

Words that would pick away at your doubts,
shield you from your insecurities,
heal your wounds,
and dry your tears,
until you
fell in love with you
again.
― N’Zuri Za Austin



… Build today, then strong and sure,
With a firm and ample base;
And ascending and secure.
Shall tomorrow find its place.
— Henry Wadsworth Longfellow


About ASCENDING & RISING 

O! for a muse of fire, that would ascend the brightest heaven of invention. — William Shakespeare

I’ll lift you and you lift me, and we’ll both ascend together. — John  Greenleaf Whittier

Everything negative – pressure, challenges – is all an opportunity for me to rise. — Kobe Bryant

It is best to rise from life as from a banquet, neither thirsty nor drunken.— Aristotle  

Bad things do happen; how I respond to them defines my character and the quality of my life. I can choose to sit in perpetual sadness, immobilized by the gravity of my loss, or I can choose to rise from the pain and treasure the most precious gift I have – life itself.— Walter Anderson

Honor and shame from no condition rise. Act well your part: there all the honor lies. — Alexander Pope

The gratitude ascending from man to God is the supreme transaction between earth and heaven. — Albert Schweitzer

By depending on the great, The small may rise high. See: the little plant ascending the tall tree Has climbed to the top. — Sakya Pandita

Every day you may make progress. Every step may be fruitful. Yet there will stretch out before you an ever-lengthening, ever-ascending, ever-improving path. You know you will never get to the end of the journey. But this, so far from discouraging, only adds to the joy and glory of the climb. — Winston Churchill

An epiphany enables you to sense creation not as something completed, but as constantly becoming, evolving, ascending. This transports you from a place where there is nothing new to a place where there is nothing old, where everything renews itself, where heaven and earth rejoice as at the moment of creation. — Abraham Isac Kook

Only a person who has passed through the gate of humility can ascend to the heights of the spirit. — Rudolf Steiner

I believe that God has put gifts and talents and ability on the inside of every one of us. When you develop that and you believe in yourself and you believe that you’re a person of influence and a person of purpose, I believe you can rise up out of any situation.— Joel Osteen

Our political leaders have great responsibilities, but as with many situations in life, people often rise or fall to meet your expectations. Our responsibility as citizens is to expect our leaders to lead and to give them enough support so that they may do so. —Paul Polman 

In prayer, we stand where angels bow with veiled faces. There, even there, the cherubim and seraphim adore before that selfsame throne to which our prayers ascend. And shall we come there with stunted requests and narrow, contracted faith?  — CHarles Spurgeon

What is art but the life upon the larger scale, the higher. When, graduating up in a spiral line of still expanding and ascending gyres, it pushes toward the intense significance of all things, hungry for the infinite? — Elizabeth Barrett Browning

Time is the continuous loop, the snakeskin with scales endlessly overlapping without beginning or end, or time is an ascending spiral if you will, like a child’s toy Slinky. — Annie Dillard

As we ascend the social ladder, viciousness wears a thicker mask.— Erich Fromm

The growth of understanding follows an ascending spiral rather than a straight line. — Marion Milner

A peaceful life is always the best destination one can ever arrive at and it is the only real heaven one can ever ascend to! ― Mehmet Murat ildan

Progress has not followed a straight ascending line, but a spiral with rhythms of progress and retrogression, of evolution and dissolution. — Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

Being or nothing, that is the question. Ascending, descending, coming, going, a man does so much that in the end he disappears. — Raymond Queneau

A rising tide doesn’t raise people who don’t have a boat. We have to build the boat for them. We have to give them the basic infrastructure to rise with the tide.— Rahul Gandhi

To The HEIGHTS

Going down is faster than going up.― Steven Magee

You want to climb the mountain because it’s there and you know you can do it. — Alex Zanardi 

Go up to go down. ― Steven Magee

Free soloing is just the most natural way man can climb. It’s just using your hands and feet without any use of protection or rope to ascend. — Dean Potter

It is the fool who declares ‘I am ascending the summit,’ while he’s toddling around in the ditch. ― Craig D. Lounsbrough

Life seems to be an experience in ascending and descending. You think you’re beginning to live for a single aim – for self-development, or the discovery of cosmic truths – when all you’re really doing is to move from place to place as if devoted primarily to real estate. — Margaret Caroline Anderson

14,000 feet (4,267 meters) and above: Most people who ascend above 14,000 feet (4,267 meters) develop some form of altitude disease. Descent is the recommended treatment. ― Steven Magee 

May your trails be crooked, winding, lonesome, dangerous, leading to the most amazing view. May your mountains rise into and above the clouds. —  Edward Abbey

Still I Rise— Maya Angelou
 You may write me down in history
With your bitter, twisted lies,
You may trod me in the very dirt
But still, like dust,
I’ll rise.  
Does my sassiness upset you?
Why are you beset with gloom?
’Cause I walk like I’ve got oil wells
Pumping in my living room.  
Just like moons and like suns,
With the certainty of tides,
Just like hopes springing high,
Still I’ll rise.  
Did you want to see me broken?
Bowed head and lowered eyes?
Shoulders falling down like teardrops,
Weakened by my soulful cries?  
Does my haughtiness offend you?
Don’t you take it awful hard
’Cause I laugh like I’ve got gold mines
Diggin’ in my own backyard.  
You may shoot me with your words,
You may cut me with your eyes,
You may kill me with your hatefulness,
But still, like air,
I’ll rise.  
Does my sexiness upset you?
Does it come as a surprise
That I dance like I’ve got diamonds
At the meeting of my thighs?  
Out of the huts of history’s shame
I rise
Up from a past that’s rooted in pain
I rise
I’m a black ocean,
leaping and wide,
Welling and swelling
I bear in the tide.  
Leaving behind nights of terror and fear
I rise
Into a daybreak that’s wondrously clear
I rise
Bringing the gifts that my ancestors gave,
I am the dream and the hope of the slave.
I rise
I rise
I rise.  

Fri, Mar 4: OPEN SENSES

I lift up my eyes to the hills— from where will my help come?
My help comes from the Lord, who made heaven and earth.
— Psalm 121: 1-2

When I look at your heavens, the work of your fingers,
the moon and the stars that you have established;
what are human beings that you are mindful of them,
mortals that you care for them? — Psalm 8:6

For God alone my soul waits in silence;
from God comes my salvation.
God alone is my rock and my salvation,
my fortress; I shall never be shaken.
 — Psalm 62:1-2

Lead me to the rock that is higher than I;
 for you are my refuge.
— Psalm 61:2

To receive the gifts of the world around us, and the revelation of Holy Love as part of creation, we are invited to open and attune our senses. Additionally, becoming attentive with our senses may also improve our perceptions with regard to relationships with other people, and even self-care.

         For instance, in Mt Washington Valley, we’re surrounded by mountains. Our lives are bounded by peaks and valleys, notches and cliffs. When we look toward the horizon, we read it through the heights and depths of the landscape. Light breaks over it, sinks behind it.

         For some folks, witnessing that grandeur and changing beauty is enough. The journey is taken with the eyes, and how it tugs the heart and mind along on its journey.

         To gain a different perspective, we can travel up those slopes. Or walk down them. The steps along the way also mater, since it’s the journey that shapes us. Yet the destination delivers its own gifts.

Summits promise a chance for respite. They serve as a reminder and opportunity to set ourselves apart with time and distance. To create space to collect and center ourselves. To focus. Or to let go .

Seeking out such places also gives us a sense of proportion. We are in the presence of elements larger than ourselves. More eternal. The mountains may not be altered when we take journeys over and among them, yet they change us. 

Remember that self-care and spiritual wellbeing include break time. Like Christ choosing to leave behind the crowds and take time to pray on the mountain, we can follow this model. Removing ourselves from daily needs and demands. Putting aside schedules and deadlines. Permitting ourselves the chance to grow quiet, whether it’s during the walk up and down the mountain, or lingering at the top, or even observing from some distant spot and gazing out at the vista that the mountain offers.

Pastor and hiker Noah Van Niel suggests the following practice. Choose a Psalm. A few scriptures are offered above, but nature appears in many of them. Read through a few options before resting to look at the mountains or traveling outside into the mountains. Select one psalm excerpt and carry it with you. Also keep this list in mind: trees and plants, the heavens, sky, path, wings, rocks, mountains and valleys, water, storms, animals. Contemplate how the sacred verses connect you to creation. When in the journey do the words come alive for you? When does the Psalm speak most clearly to you? When you are reminded of one of the words, pause and reflect: linger in that moment, that experience. How does the verse change the way you feel?

We are invited to find a time and place to be in the presence of ourselves. We are especially guided to also keep company with the unlimited and eternal: Godself.— Rev Gail     

         ————————————————————————————

Climb the mountains and get their good tidings. Nature’s peace will flow into you as sunshine flows into trees. The winds will blow their own freshness into you, and the storms their energy, while cares will drop away from you like the leaves of Autumn. John Muir

Prayer is a mountain; you have to climb it. — Prophetess Triza

PRAYER from MOUNTAIN as SANCTUARY & INSPIRATION
– excerpt from statement by Martin Luther King, Jr.
I just want to do God’s will … to go up to the mountain.
And I’ve looked over and I’ve seen the Promised Land.

PRAYER If MOUNTAIN Is ADVERSARY
— excerpt from prayer by Terra Blakemore
Lord God, give us this mountain and the knowledge, wisdom, understanding, patience, and strength to climb it, overcome it … We thank You for every mountain, circumstance, fear, and adversary You help us climb … and overcome in the power of Your Holy Spirit, Your awesome might. We thank You for every word of comfort, encouragement, correction, and instruction. We thank You for grace, mercy, forgiveness …

UPCOMING OPPORTUNITIES for Youth & Families at Jackson Community Church

(See end of posting for summer intensives and international internships for youth & young adults. Fast-approaching deadlines [March 15, April, etc] for registration and applications or scholarships for some of these opportunities.)

THURSDAYS, Mar 15 & Mar 22

  • Soup & Ski with Family & Friends
    5pm • Parish Hall of Jackson Community Church. Gather with members and friends for soup supper.
    5:30/6pm •  Meet at church parking lot for evening XC ski. Optimal starting point to be determined. For those who able and interested, if weather permits, come on a ‘night ski’ on Jackson XC Center’s trails. Donations will be collected for Jackson Ski Touring Foundation. Bring your own head lamps, ski equipment, layers, and be prepared for outdoor conditions. Ski at your own risk. Bring friends! Open to everyone. All ages welcome.

FRI, MAR 23

  • Film Screening of “404 Not Found” & Soup Supper: Bowls for Homeless Teens in Mt Washington Valley
    5-7pm • Gibson Senior Center, North Conway. In collaboration with Clergy of the Eastern Slope and First Church of North Conway’s Missions Team, screening the film “404 Not Found” that highlights the homeless youth in NH.  Check out the film trailer @  404notfoundfilm.com.  Held in collaboration with Governor Sununu’s “Sleep Out”.  This is a valley issue and will take a valley solution.
  • “Sleep Out” (Stay-Up-Late or Sleep Over at Church)
    8pm, Mar 23 – 9am, Mar 24 • Jackson Community Church
    For youth & chaperones. Stay late at church. Or spend the night. To be held in solidarity with Gov Sununu’s “Sleep Out” event to raise awareness about homelessness. We will stay up late at Jackson Community Church with games and worship, learn about homelessness in the valley, make civic engagement posters. If some people stay overnight, we will wake up to have breakfast together. RSVP and permission slips required.

WED, APR 4: MLK Remembrance Bell Ringing

  • 6pm. • Front door of sanctuary, Jackson Community Church.
    Help ring the bell 39 times in memory of Martin Luther King Jr. This is a national vigil; learn more at www.MLK50Forward.org.

SAT, APR 7: New England Youth Environmental Justice Summit

  • 9am-4pm • Brookside Congregational Church, Manchester, NH
  • Jackson Community Church will cover the cost of registration and attendance. $20/day. RSVP to the church asap if you plan to attend, so that we can register you. Or let us know if you register separately, but plan to attend, so we can coordinate rides and reimbursement for attendance.
  • Rev Gail will attend summit and provide rides.
  • The Summit is open to all middle school, high school and college students; as well as teachers, mentors, pastors, lay leaders and advisors: and anyone interested in acquiring tools for facing the pressing moral issue of climate change.
  • Keynote Speakers:
    • Rev. Dr. Jim Antal, Massachusetts Conference Minister, UCC
    • Rev. Dr. Brooks Berndt, UCC Minister for Environmental Justice
  • Afternoon Breakout Sessions include:
    • Pam Arifian, Director, UCC Northeast Environmental Justice Center
    • Marla Marcum, Founder, Climate Disobedience Center
    • John Ungerleider, Professor, School of International Training
    • Jehann El-Bisi, PhD and Film Director, and Art Desmarais
    • Representatives from 350.org and other groups will lead a workshop on activism in climate change issues

SUN, APR 8: Road to Emmaus Hike

  • 9am • “Road to Emmaus” Walk. Meet at church for family hike if weather permits. Indoor activities available if weather turns

Note: Additional spring youth & family schedule to be announced. Expect outdoor youth & family activities every Sunday at 9am, beginning April 22.

FRI, APR 20-MON, APR 23: Ecumenical Advocacy Days

  • 1pm, Fri – 5pm, Mon • DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Washington, D.C.-Crystal City, 300 Army Navy Drive, Arlington, VA.
    A WORLD UPROOTED: Responding to Migrants, Refugees and Displaced Peoples. A weekend of faith-rooted worship, learning and advocacy in our Nation’s capital – will focus on the uprootedness of our world. We will analyze current policy and envision ways to more fully and justly respond to the global and local needs of displaced communities. Together we will seek policy changes that advance hope and overcome the devastating impacts of conflict, climate change and corruption on God’s people. Ends with congressional advocacy day.

    • REGISTER – Early-bird registration rates available through March 17th. Register now.
    • SCHOLARSHIPS – Justice and Witness Ministries has designated funding for UCC young adults (ages 18-35) to attend Ecumenical Advocacy Days (EAD) in 2018. Learn more and apply by March 23rd.
    • Travel costs and hotel accommodations are separate expenses.
    • Additional scholarships, such as Bushee-Thorne Scholarship, can be applied to this conference!

FRI, MAY 19 – SAT, MAY 20: Middle School Retreat

  • 3pm, Fri – 6pm, Sat • Ipswich, MA
    Spend weekend on retreat with Ipswich Middle School youth group. Stay overnight in sleeping bags at the church on Friday and return to Jackson on Saturday evening. RSVP to church by April 15, 2018  if interested.
YOUTH & YOUNG ADULT INTERNSHIP OPPORTUNITIES
through the UCC
A tuition-free program of the Cooperative Metropolitan Ministries, the IFYI Fellowship is an all-expense paid interfaith immersion experience for young leaders (ages 15-19) providing an opportunity to meaningfully engage together with important global and local issues through the lens of their different religious, ethnic, cultural, economic, social and political backgrounds.

(Ages 21-29)
This Internship Programme stretches over an 18-month period, for four young people aged 21-29. Each intern is assigned to work for 12 months at the WCC offices in Geneva, Switzerland, in one of our many programme areas. This is then to be followed by a six-month work placement in the intern’s own country.
HORTON CENTER
FAMILY CAMP & YOUTH GROUP CAMP
Sun, July 1- Sat, July 7
Flexi-Week.: Come for the day or for a period of days.
  • Rev Gail & Chris Doktor will be deans of family camp.
  • Our youth can come for one day or an overnight!
  • Registration available here:
  • Scholarships such as Bushee-Thorne (for which applications already being considered as of April) can be applied to this camp.
  • Additional camp weeks are also available with focus on different skills such as archery, rock clibing, etc. Full schedule available here.
EASTERN REGIONAL YOUTH EVENT
July 19-22, 2018 

California University of PA, California, Pennsylvania
(grades 7 through 12 )
  • Join us as we worship, play, pray, learn, serve, sing and dream at the 2018 Eastern Regional Youth Event.
  • Stay up-to-date on event details through the event website or contact Ann Desrochers.
  • Scholarships from Bushee-Thorne (applications already being considered as of April) can be applied to this experience.

Sampling of the workshops that will be offered at ERYE.  Each participant will be able to attend 3 workshops. (Workshop list subject to change.)

  • Authentic Faith: The Wisdom of Not Knowing All the Answers
  • Becoming a Transgender AllyBuilding a Team – Playing a Game
  • Disabled God, Queer God: Understanding the Divine Through Identity
  • Disabled in Church: Struggles and Triumphs
  • Earth Avengers: Superheroes for the Planet
  • From Barbie to Wonder Woman!
  • How An Orphan In Mexico Inspired Thousands – And How He Can Inspire You.
  • How Can I Help My Community Prepare For And Respond To A Disaster?
  • Identity Bowling: Intersectionality through Music
  • Our Gender & Sexuality: Confusions and Questions and Wonder
  • Praying with Color, Clay, Beads and Ribbons
  • Praying with the Body
  • Sacred DanceStorytelling for Social Change
  • The Conflict Skills That Nobody Got (but everybody needs)This Is Really Happening
  • Tie-Dyed Faith: Revealing Your God-Colors
  • Walking the Labyrinth to Rejuvenate Your Spirit
  • Watershed Management
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