Images from Relationships 2020
The final learning circle of the 2019-2020 CCS school year ended last week. Relationships was an online spiritual care circle focused on ministry skills to understand and support people in various kinds of relationships. Seven participants (plus program staff) spent six weeks exploring ideas, theologies, and practical issues relating to sexuality and intimate relationships, families, friendships, as well as the relationship dynamic between minister and congregants, and rituals to mark the beginnings and the endings of relationships.
Compared to the online circles we held in April, this circle was always intended to be offered online. Students met twice weekly on video to worship, discuss, reflect on readings, and participate in learning activities.
Some notable quotes gleaned from the circle:
- (student’s thoughts on the way to the computer) “Oh no! They are going to see my pajama pants! …Oh, wait! I’m wearing clothes! Whew.”
- “You look excited to speak.” “I am SO excited to speak!”
- “From our very first breath, we are in relationship.” – Richard Wagamese
- “A friend understands and embraces the silence.”
- “Earth, teach me kindness as dry fields weep with rain.”
A theology of relationship: “We proclaim a theology of friendship rooted in truth-telling A theology of both the shepherd and the gate We solemnly understand friendship to involve witness, nurture, openness, and inclusivity We resist the divisive and destructive forces of empire, We subvert the energies of occupation with purposeful connection to restore our relationships with one another, with the entire creation community, and with God.”