One of my favorite things to do at my placement site, St. Stephen's The Vine and EarthDance Organic Farm School, is to work at the Farmer's Markets and be out in the fields getting my hands dirty. I have had the opportunity many times to act as a Market Manager, as well as being the Marketeer for EarthDance once, which has given me a lot of different perspectives on Farmers' Markets.
On the farm last fall, I started by doing mostly odd jobs around the farm, helping our farm manager and assistant manager. One of my largest responsibilities was to work with the Work Experience Program Students who came to the farm 4 days a week. I really enjoyed the challenge and adventure of learning new skills in order to be able to guide others in completing the tasks.
There is something so rewarding about physically laboring to grow and tend the food that others will eat. I have greatly loved being so involved in the food process and finding so much growth, joy, and hope in the world of agriculture.
A call to Ferguson is what describes this Episcopal Service Corps year for us. The movement calls for us to be a part of it in many different ways and that’s what makes our community unique.
Some of us are called to be in communication with others. Some are called to pray and simply listen. Some are called to be on the front line. We are called to be where are we are most comfortable and are free to feel discomfort in or out of our safety zones.
Ferguson is much like an intentional community. A group of people gathered for a call to service and social justice. We have to focus more on building relationships within those people to form a stronger community. Being at Deaconess Anne House has formed me into the person that is called to be on the front line. It has given me the strength to build those relationships and from those relationships I have gained a family. I have been a part of the growth in both communities of DAH and Ferguson; both which have touched hearts of many and continue to do so.
A Community Organizer Looks at DAH
Stories and THE Story
--By Martin Geiger
"The Lord is risen indeed! Alleluia!" We've said it constantly since the Easter Vigil, but it never stops losing its thrill. Eucharist at Deaconess Anne refocuses us around the astounding story of Christ's resurrection, and reminds us to look for the wonderful and often scary moments of resurrection in our own lives.
One of the things I love best about the church practices we've developed is our "sermon" - Rebecca or Mark spends some time explaining the story they hear in the Gospel, and asks us to reflect about the experiences we've had that connect us to that story.
We tell a lot of different stories in that space - stories of closeness with God and others, stories about pain and difficulty and the times we've been hurt, and stories about where we found healing. I value the chance to hear stories from my housemates and our many visitors, to sit at the place where our stories and the words of the Gospel meet - not to solve all our theological problems, but to share where we are, and begin to think about our own stories as shaped by God's grace and the love our community has for each other. What we have on the altar when we celebrate communion together is more than bread and wine - it's our selves, soul, body, and story together, awaiting the transformation of the Spirit.