Episode 10: Guests Reflect

For this episode of On Carrying a Concern we are excited to welcome three guests from different parts of the Protestant Christian world. We thought it would  be interesting to hear from other Christians, who are not Quakers, what they hear in the stories that Friends tell about leadings and service in the Friends’ tradition.  

Show notes with questions for discussion, resources mentioned in the episode, and a transcript are all available here.


Tuhina Rasche calls herself a “Hudu.” Growing up Hindu in Colorado she was converted to Christianity during and after college. Currently she is an ordained minister in the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA), though she serves an African Methodist Episcopal church on the team at University AME Zion Church in Palo Alto California.  Her website is here: https://www.tuhinavrasche.com/

Tamisha Tyler is a PhD student at Fuller Theological Seminary in Southern California. She was born and raised in Long Beach, CA but currently resides in Pasadena. Her interests include engaging the intersection of theology, ethics and culture through the work of Octavia Butler. She co-hosts a podcast entitled Why We’re Friends. She is an activist in the #SeminaryWhileBlack #ToxicFuller movement addressing the ways in which predominantly white seminaries (like Fuller) are not safe places for black students (search the above hashtags for more info or see the resources below). Tamisha’s website is here: https://www.tamishatyler.com/

T.D. (Tim) Burnette is the founder and co-curator of the Way Collective, a spiritual community of shared practices and values in the Jesus way in Santa Barbara, CA. He is a pastor in the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) denomination. He hosts a podcast called the Theopoetics Podcast. He's also a partner, father, poet, and musician who agrees with Vonnegut that: "You can see all kinds of things from the edge that you can’t see from the center." Although, sometimes it's nice to be centered out on the edge as well.  The website for The Way Collective and Tim are here: https://www.waycollective.org/ 

Episode 09: Gretchen Baker-Smith

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This week we sit down with Gretchen Baker-Smith of Dartmouth, MA. Gretchen was kind enough to drive up to our home and spend the morning sharing stories of the way in which she has been called fully into a life of ministry. Gretchen currently works as the Junior High and Junior Yearly Meeting Coordinator for New England Yearly Meeting - work she performs faithfully and with love and care for our young folk. Her story asks us to consider: what happens when God's call is unmistakable and, contrary to our "plans?" You can read more about Gretchen and her "credo in Ministry" here: at the New England Yearly Meeting Website.

Reflection questions, resources mentioned in the show, and a transcript of the episode are all available here

Episode 08: Angela Hopkins


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. 

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.

Episode 07: Benigno Sánchez-Eppler

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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.

Episode 06: Elisabeth Dearborn


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.

Episode 05: Lisa Graustein


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.

Episode 04: Jay O'Hara


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.

Episode 03: Melody Brazo


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.

Episode 01: Introductions

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.