Community of Congregations - A Neighborhood Gathering

Community of Congregations

A Neighborhood Gathering

April 4, 2019

6:30 Welcome and Opening Blessing

Rev. Alan Taylor, President, Community of Congregations

6:45 Dinner is served

7:15 Unity in Community: Gathering Neighbors

Reflection by Rabbi Max Weiss and Rev. Warren Riley

7:45 Table Conversation

8:30 Community of Congregations Business Meeting

9:00 Good night

Tonight, during the Table Conversations we will share through an approach known as Restorative Justice (RJ) or Peace Circle.

What do restorative practices do? In short, they:

v build healthy relationships between people in a community of faith or other setting;

v support people of faith in their social and emotional development;

v create safe spaces for difficult conversations, deep emotions and healing to begin;

v shift the focus from intervention to a culture of prevention and safety.

Agreements in our Sharing Roundtables this evening*

This moment is an opportunity to talk together about how we have met one another across difference, we have come together in this sacred space and we agree to the following values:

Be present as fully as possible. Be here with your doubts, fears and failings as well as your convictions, joys and successes, your listening as well as your speaking.

What is offered in the circle is by invitation, not demand. This is not a “share or die” event! Do whatever your soul calls for, and know that you do it with our support. Your soul knows your needs better than we do.

Speak your truth in ways that respect other people’s truth. Our views of reality may differ, but speaking one’s truth in a circle of trust does not mean interpreting, correcting or debating what others say. Speak from your center to the center of the circle, using “I” statements, trusting people to do their own sifting and winnowing.

Know that it’s possible to leave the circle with whatever it was that you needed when you arrived, and that the seeds planted here can keep growing in the days ahead.

Circle Sharing in Three Rounds:

The table facilitator will invite responses around the table to three prompts:

Round One: Introduce yourself. Your name, the faith community from which you come, and briefly the reason you chose to be part of this neighborhood gathering tonight.

Round Two: Share a memory of a time when you have experienced a meaningful connection with someone from a different faith and/or culture than your own.

Round Three: What is inside you that keeps you from making a connection with someone from a different faith and/or culture than your own?

Closing: Give one word for how you are as you leave this space.