SECOND QUARTER 2018 e-News

Dear Friends,

This morning we were visited by a blue heron. This magnificent being alighted on a pillar next to the river and hung out with us for quite some time. According to Ted Andrews, the Heron is a symbol of balance, able to be sure footed upon the ground and fly gracefully through the sky. ... Self determination, self reliance and guidance are the trademarks of the ever popular “lady” of the lake and spiritual guardian of the nature lover's soul, the Great Blue Heron. I can't help feeling this is a message for Veriditas - that we are becoming more sure footed even as we spread our wings into our local community here in Petaluma and beyond.

We are grateful to all of you who have contributed to our mid-year fundraising campaign. It's not too late to offer your support if you haven't yet done so.

The first half of 2018 has brought a number of new offerings to our community including a beautiful Pilgrimage at Ghost Ranch, and an enriching renewal day hosted by the Veriditas Council at Stony Point in New York. We have also added new offerings for our VIA members, including a private Facebook Group and post-webinar Q&A meeting with the webinar presenter, and a bi-monthly Zoom call with Lauren or another Veriditas Faculty member.

Because we have so much on our plates, we have decided to reduce our eNews to just two issues a year. If you feel called to help us write content or offer images, please reach out to anne@veriditas.org.

We are delighted to welcome Brighid FitzGibbon to our team for the Summer. She is helping support our work here in the office and will be coordinating local events as well, including a free labyrinth walk at the Earthrise Retreat Center on August 17th.

We still have room in our September Chartres Pilgrimages. Click here for more info or to register.

Our annual online auction will be taking place again this year from October 11th to the 31st. We encourage you to start thinking about what you could offer for the auction. What could you knit/sew/paint or otherwise create? Have a vacation home that is available for part of the year? Have skill or service you can donate? We would love to hear from you!

Wishing you all a peaceful and happy Summer.

All of us at Veriditas


"When you come to the edge of all that you know, you must believe one of two things: there will be earth to stand on,
or you will be given wings to fly."

~ Author unknown

Living the Labyrinth: A Labyrinth Renewal Day for Facilitators and Labyrinth Enthusiasts

By Chris Farrow-Noble, Council Member

Stony Point Labyrinth. Photo by Marion Patterson

This month I invite you to get a sense of the Veriditas Council Renewal Day in April 2018 and to whet your appetite for the 2019 Renewal Day being planned for March 29-31, 2019, in Louisiana.

Around table from left to right: John and Betty Towey, Barrie Gibby, Jean Ando, Linda Mikell, Judith Tripp, Marge McCarthy, Ellen Bintz Meuch,
Marion Patterson, Karen Kelley and Chris Farrow-Noble.

Eighteen facilitators from Connecticut, Illinois, Massachusetts, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, and Vermont wended their way to the Stony Point Center in Stony Point, New York to join eight Council members for a shared day with the labyrinth.  The success of this third renewal day (2016 in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada; 2017 in Los Angeles, California) certainly encourages future gatherings.
   
Each year we choose a location that is accessible to particular regions of the Veriditas community.  Stony Point Center, nestled in the lower Hudson River Valley in Rockland County, a little more than an hour outside of New York City, attracted facilitators from the New England and Middle Atlantic regions, and others.

This was a time to welcome new 2018 members to Council: Tina Christensen (Australia), Karen Kelley (Texas), Marion Patterson (Iowa), and Calen Rayne (Maine). It was also a time for farewells to Council members who are resigning: Gracie Amirault (Canada), Jo Ann Mast (Washington), Ellen Bintz Meuch (Illinois), and Kay Mutert (Alabama). An extended ZOOM call united us with those who were unable to attend. 
   
Kathryn McLean (Florida), Council member since 2014, knew personally the co-directors, Rick and Kitty Ufford-Chase, and the multifaith work of the Stony Point Center.  Their radical hospitality of taking care of the distinctive needs of each guest and group comes from both the staff, and the Muslim, Jewish and Christian resident members who live in intentional community and call Stony Point Center, “home." They share a commitment to live out values of peace and justice and nonviolence and care for the world around us.

Our intention was to create a day of connection, re-connection, learning, and inspiration.  Judith Tripp (California), a founding member of the Council, offered a palpable thread of welcome, ritual, and community.  Nathan Wiles (North Carolina) recalled these beginnings:

“What really stood out to me was the importance of how the workshop began and the group diversity.  The workshop ‘opened’ us up through the form of rituals, responses, stories and anecdotes.  Council members led us through exercises that built safety and trust within our group, along with introspection, which allowed for the opportunity to make stronger connections with one another. This approach set the tone for collaboration throughout the day.”

Council members offered a spectrum of presentations, including Linda Mikell (New York) on Rituals; Ellen Bintz Meuch on Global Healing Response; Chris Farrow-Noble (Massachusetts) on her book, Walking a Labyrinth Daily, Exploring a Spiritual Practice; Judith Tripp on the Veriditas International Association of Professionally Trained Labyrinth Facilitators (VIA) and the Women’s Dream Quest; and Kathryn McLean on the Labyrinth in Community.
 
Warm weather came too with sunshine and spring energy.  Clusters of attendees found indoor and outdoor spaces to exchange experiences and plans, as well as meet new people. Karen Kelley spoke of connecting moments:

“During the day I felt joy emanating from attendees as well as Council members for the opportunity to be with each other.  It was a real treat to participate in a Labyrinth walk with a group of facilitators who all have the same training and love for the Labyrinth.  It is a rare opportunity to join in community with each other for sharing and ritual.”

In celebration of spontaneous collaboration and creativity, we realized the extraordinary talents and depth of labyrinth experience within this circle of facilitators.  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sBfeZFRFR1E&t=5s

Linda Mikell, the New England Regional Representative and coordinating editor for Little Miracles On the Path, organized the annual sale of items donated by Council members to support the Council Scholarship Fund.  All money goes directly to scholarships so potential facilitators can receive facilitator training for their identified labyrinth work in under-served populations. 

An unexpected plus was the presence of Marge McCarthy (New Mexico), another founding Council member who resigned after 11 years in 2015.  Her deep knowledge of the history of Veriditas and commitment to labyrinth work in the Council and the Santa Fe area were reminders of the ongoing gifts of our elders.  She commented:

“My visit to Stony Point was full of many wonderful moments. During the weekend the idea of a ‘Council Alumni Association’ was born. My time with my dear friends was precious.  It was inspiring to experience how the Council has grown and is dedicated to supporting Veriditas facilitators around the world. I hope other ‘alumni’ will meet with the Council when possible.“

A welcoming 7-circuit Classic labyrinth is on the Stony Point Center grounds near a beautiful meditation building.  In Kitty Ufford-Chase’s presentation, linked with Ellen Bintz Meuch’s on the Global Healing Response, she mentioned that they are very interested in cultivating increased understanding of the labyrinth and ways to integrate their outdoor labyrinth into the work of reconciliation, peace, faithful action and non-violence. We ended our day together by walking this peaceful outdoor labyrinth.



Marion Patterson has created short videos that share memorable moments of our time in Stony Point through her creative talents as a photographer. Here are the links: Renewal MorningRenewal Afternoon, Council in the LabyrinthReturn to Light. (Also available in YouTube under Marion Patterson.)

Here are some responses to a key phrase from the evaluations:
The one thing I enjoyed most about the program content was:

  • The community
  • The sense of renewal and intuition of anticipated energy for subjects presented
  • Witnessing spirit working through our labyrinth work
  • Knowing about all these resources
  • The energy, love, commitment that all the presenters brought and the responses from all of the participants
  • Going back to the labyrinth throughout the day
  • Music and movement were unexpected surprises and spurred ideas on how to use the labyrinth to expand community.

The Council is already in the early planning stages for the next Veriditas Council Renewal Day on March 29-31, 2019, at the Solomon Center in Loranger, Louisiana.  It is located equidistant from New Orleans and Baton Rouge.  Please save the date and watch for opening registrations through Veriditas.

We look forward to welcoming you there!

“My overall impression of the renewal day was of once-solitary facilitators turning toward belonging, and then feeling the blessings of the circle in early spring. I think we all treasured being together in the Labyrinth tribe. “    ~ Judith Tripp

A Note of Thanks

from Rita Canning, Veriditas Development Manager

Thank you to our Veriditas Sustainers Circle!
Your partnership with Veriditas through your generous monthly contributions is a tangible expression of your commitment to inspiring personal and planetary change and renewal through the labyrinth experience.  It also makes a real difference to our success by helping to provide a stable monthly financial foundation from which we can fulfill our mission.  Thank You!

If you are not part of our Sustainers Circle yet and would like to sign up or would like more info on how the Circle works, please call Rita at the office, 707-283-0373 to set up your monthly contribution.

GLOBAL HEALING RESPONSE

The Global Healing Response, founded in 2005 by Council member Ellen Bintz Meuch, offers an annual theme and quarterly ideas and information to enrich labyrinth walks.

The GHR theme for 2018 is LIGHT

"To love beauty is to see light." —Victor Hugo

Focus: See the Light in Others

Quote: See the light in others and treat them as if that’s all you see. —Wayne Dyer

Picture/Symbol: The rising sun

www.globalhealingresponse.com

LITTLE MIRACLES ON THE PATH

"Little Miracles" is produced by Linda Mikell. Each month she shares an inspirational story from a labyrinth experience that is sent to her by a facilitator. She welcomes YOUR story. I'm sure you're got one, and we all benefit from this sharing. Thank you, Linda! 

Please send your story to Linda Mikell at edlinmik@optonline.net

Booklets are available online for

$10 each plus shipping.

Proceeds benefit the Veriditas scholarship fund.

CELEBRATING 1400 FACEBOOK FRIENDS! (Thank you!)

Love Veriditas and our programs? Tell your friends and "friend" or "follow" us on Social Media by clicking the icons to the right - an easy way to share the love (be sure to like and share posts with your friends) - Thank you!

101 H Street, Suite D, Petaluma, CA 94952   |   Phone 707-283-0373   |  Fax 707-283-0372   |    contact@veriditas.org

Veriditas is dedicated to inspiring personal and planetary change and renewal through the labyrinth experience.

We accomplish our mission by training and supporting labyrinth facilitators around the world, and offering meaningful events that promote further understanding of the labyrinth as a tool for personal and community transformation. Our Vision is that the labyrinth experience guides us in developing the higher level of human awareness we need to thrive in the 21st century.

© Veriditas 2018. All rights reserved.

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