This week we sit down with Angela Hopkins of Ithaca Monthly Meeting in New York. Callid drove through a near-blizzard to visit her at the Burtt House, which is home to the Friends Center for Racial Justice (FCRJ). The FCRJ was born of a concern that Angela carries for Friends and the spiritual work of racial justice. Angela shares how she came to Friends in Kenya - tens of thousands of miles from her home in Ohio - and then traveled to Friends meetings in Africa accompanying her pastor and learning about Friends in both Africa and North America. When Angela returned to the United States she began to worship with Friends in New England and, eventually, in New York. Angela shares stories of opportunities that emerge when one listens faithfully to the nudges of the Spirit. We hope you will enjoy this conversation as much as we did.
This week we sit down with Benigno Sanchez-Epler of Northampton Meeting, MA. Kristina drove out to Amherst in the late fall to have a wonderful conversation with Benigno. He shares the delightful story of coming to Friends in college and how saying, “yes” to an invitation to serve unfolded into a life of service and international ministry. We also get to hear about how a tension airport customs encounter becomes a moment of ministry. We hope you will enjoy this conversation as much as we did.
Reflection questions, show notes, and a transcription of the show are all here. Please feel free to use any of them (and the show itself) however you please in service of deepening folks into Life in the Spirit.
This week we sit down with Elisabeth Dearborn, of Putney, VT. We spoke to Elizabeth (who goes by El) in the summer of 2016 - when she was a member of Putney Friends Meeting. Elizabeth shares her experience of a life lived focused on listening for and being faithful to Guidance of the Spirit. Such faithfulness to Spirit’s Guidance took her across the country, to new careers, and, eventually, out of the Religious Society of Friends. El describes the ways in which a peer community of accountability can serve to support and deepen the spiritual path. She also talks about the tension that occurs when mystical experience contradict the spiritual “training” we’ve had. Do we stick with the training or trust our own experiences? Elisabeth shares stories of incredible openings and opportunities. We hope you will enjoy this conversation as much as we did.
Questions for reflection, show notes, and a transcript of the show are all here.
This week we sit down with Lisa Graustein of Beacon Hill Friends Meeting. Lisa has been teaching at the Codman Academy Charter Public School in Dorchester, MA since 2007 and is currently the Equity Coordinator there. She is also a facilitator with Beyond Diversity 101. Lisa talks with us about her experience living into evolving leadings that have guided the course of her life as a teacher and racial justice educator. She offers some keen insight into the ways in which the hurt and trauma that we carry, as humans, can be blocks to faithfulness. She also recognizes that the (Liberal) Religious Society of Friends is in transition: a period after harvest, where the fields aren’t filled with vibrant fruit but, the new plantings haven’t yet been put in. It’s a time of innovation and possibility! Lisa is open and vulnerable in sharing her experience. We hope you will enjoy this conversation as much as we did. Questions for reflection and the show transcript are available here.
In this episode we sit down with Jay O’Hara of West Falmouth Preparative Meeting, Sandwich Monthly Meeting. We connected with him during the 2016 Annual Sessions of New England Yearly Meeting, after he spoke at a plenary about his journey to participating in an action of climate witness. We don’t focus on the Lobster Boat Blockade, specifically, but explore his journey to Friends, ways in which he was prepared for that work, the support he receives from his meeting, and how his life was turned over to faithful action without concern for the outcome.
Questions for reflection on the episode are available here and a transcription for the show is here.
In this episode we launch the interview portion of the show, sitting down with Melody Brazo of Fresh Pond Monthly Meeting. The conversation ranges from discussions of ideas about God to the sense and testing of a leading and questions about power, privilege, and the ways in which it plays out in ministry among Friends.
The full transcript of the show is here and reflection questions and resources are here.
This is the first of a series of question and answer episodes based on questions and comments sent in by listeners. They all have something to do with following Leadings and/or ministry.
This is the beginning of something! Here we (Kristina and Callid Keefe-Perry) introduce you all to the premise of the show, explain a little about why we are doing this, and invite you all to get involved. If you would like the queries we've written to sit with after you've listened to the show, you can find them here. If you want to be in touch with us to have us come to visit with you and your community, head over to Connect.