On November 12th LDI is hosting a workshop to explore the vocation of the Church and the ways contemplative and organizing tools can enable us to fulfill our call to seek reconciliation and justice.
Currently our Diocese, and the wider Church, is waking up and reimagining what it means to Be the Church. As we embrace change together it is essential that we do so with a deep understanding of God’s vision for us and the practices which will enable us to join in God’s work today.
Through his life of expansive love Jesus embodied, in human form, God’s ongoing movement towards reconciliation. Jesus offered healing, connection, and unity to people experiencing separation and exclusion. As Jesus’s followers we are called embody the Christ as a way of responding to divisions we experience today. When we follow Jesus, we are the Church, the Body of Christ.
This workshop will support participants in discerning how they are being called to be the Church in their specific contexts. In addition, we will introduce participants to specific practices that enable us to create pathways towards reconciliation in our own communities.
The workshop will consist of the following three modules:
- Be the Church: Study scripture, tradition, and our own stories as a way of understanding the Church’s collective call to join in God’s movement of reconciliation.
- Encountering Wholeness: Experience how Christian contemplative practices can be a pathway for encountering wholeness within ourselves and in our relationship with God.
- Engaging Power: Explore how we can use community organizing practices to honor the dignity of all, share power equally, and offer a prophetic witness for justice.
In addition to members of LDI's training team, Natalie Finstad and Lydia Strand, this event features three guest speakers, the Rev. Edwin Johnson, Fran Early, and Joseph Worthy. Read more about our guests below.
This workshop will take place in St. Paul's Cathedral at 138 Tremont Street, from 9am to 5pm. The event is free with a suggested donation of $25 per person for materials and food — lunch is included. Parking is available, but please request in advance by contacting Jesse Ortiz at Jesse@LDITeam.org
Joe is the National Coordinator of Youth Leadership Development for the Children’s Defense Fund. His work focuses on developing leaders who can effectively dismantle systemic racism in our country. Joe is based out of Cleveland Ohio. He was a leader in the response to Tamir Rice’s shooting in Cleveland and has worked with the Diocese of Ohio to help parishes posture themselves for the work of reconciliation. Joe will be speaking to how the community organizing practices support us in seeking reconciliation.
Fran Early has been an organizer for the Greater Boston Interfaith Organization since 1996, experiencing the political power that comes from building relationships across the many cultural and religious lines that divide metro Boston. Always a change agent, Fran retired from The Prudential after thirty years in human resources, public affairs, and operations management. She led a Total Quality Process, which recognized employee’s wisdom at all levels, resulting in improved service and reduced costs. Fran recently published “Doing Good Says Who” a book that explores the impact of good intentions from the inside.
Rev. Edwin Johnson, a self-proclaimed “smiling-dancing-Jesus-freak” is currently serving as the Priest-In-Charge of St. Mary’s Episcopal Church in Dorchester, the largest neighborhood of Boston. A product of our Diocese and its youth programs, Edwin attended Tufts University and directed a non-profit before heading off to Seminary in Berkeley California. Upon returning to the Diocese Edwin has immersed himself in urban parish ministry, social justice work, mission and faith formation for all ages. Edwin encountered Life Together for the first time while attending a training for site supervisors in 2010. Since then he has worked closely with several fellows while joining the Leadership Team and Life Together Faculty. He has become an important part of the Life Together family. Edwin is passionate about bringing together communities of people to “be church” in ways that enrich their lives and the lives of everyone around them through ministries of love and justice. This passion fuels him as he gives himself fully to his Parish St. Mary’s along a number of Diocesan and National Church responsibilities. In the midst of all this, Edwin finds plenty of time and energy for fun and fellowship. He’s a competitive weightlifter, a dance instructor/performer and is learning to enjoy nature thanks to his wife Susan. He and Susan welcomed their son Francisco into the world last year and are experiencing God’s love in incredible ways through him.