Friends General Conference

Together we nurture the spiritual vitality of Friends

Spiritual Deepening eRetreats: Weaving a Wider Welcome

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Do our meetings truly reflect all the faces of God among our members and attenders? FGC has heard from many of you that the answer to that question is often no. We have heard that many meetings wonder why their newcomers stop coming after a few visits-- especially LGBTQ folks, families with young children and People of Color.  In this eRetreat, we will explore how newcomers experience welcome, mistakes meetings make with newcomers, and what approaches to welcoming have worked in FGC meetings.

In this workshop you will learn:

  • Why people don’t come back and why people choose to engage.
  • Ways meetings can shift their culture to become more newcomer-friendly
  • Effective ways to better reach newcomers, with a special focus on seekers of Color, LGBTQ folks, and families with young children. Spoiler alert: what is enriching for newcomers also benefits longtimers!

eRetreat Details:

  • Offered October 10 - November 14, 2021 (skipping the week of October 31)
  • Four weeks, $45 pay-as-led** participation fee
  • Weekly readings, queries, resources, and activities available on FGC's eRetreat website, Matrix
  • Community Building Calls: Sundays from 6-7:30pm Eastern starting October 10

**Pay-as-Led is a method of offering sliding scale pricing so that paid events are more accessible for people with a wide range of abilities to pay. Participants choose how much to pay for the registration fee.

eRetreat Schedule and Weekly Themes:

Weekly Theme Module Begins Community Building Call Date
Introductions   October 10
Week 1: The Needs of Newcomers October 10 October 17
Week 2: Undoing Assumptions October 17 October 24
    skip week of October 31
Week 3: Getting Messy October 24 November 7
Week 4: Be a People Transformed November 7 November 14

Community Building Calls

Each week, the facilitators will lead Community Building Calls using Zoom.  During these calls, participants will have the opportunity to reflect on the eRetreat content, worship together, do additional eRetreat exercises, and build connections with each other.

Learn More: What to expect during a Spiritual Deepening eRetreat