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Goose News

Rev. Barber Wakes the 2019 Goose

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Rev. Dr. William Barber, II – Saturday morning – WILD, Wild Goose!

Rev. Barber and testifiers from the Poor People’s Campaign: A National Call for Moral Revival will “Wake the Goose” on Saturday morning! It will be monumental – it will move us – it will disrupt us – and we will be better equipped and more urgently empowered to create the world in which we want to live.

No one alive today understands more clearly the hidden community held in place by the systems of poverty and no one more urgently lifts us and leads us into action than Rev. Barber.

Winter Ticket Prices end soon – March 21. Get yours now!

Alexia, John, The Liturgusts, Amythyst, & The Collection

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Bring your curiosity! Bring your creativity! Bring your courage! And, by all means bring your dancing shoes ok, dancing feet – shoes optional – It’s the WILD, Wild Goose!    TICKETS

The Liturgists and John Pavlovitz will push us and prod us and we’ll think more broadly and act more boldly. Alexia Salvatierra writes the real news of the real world everyday with her courageous engagement. Amythyst Kiah may not be on your playlist YET, but she’s on Amy Ray’s – and she’s in a supergroup with Rhiannon Giddens.

Get your opening night party on withThe Collection!

Don’t forget Otis Moss IIIBishop Yvette FlunderNadia Bolz-WeberTony CampoloPete Enns, and Beth Nielsen Chapman. And we’re just getting started – hundreds more to come!

Getting excited about this year’s festival? Check out the new Wild Goose Podcast for highlights of 2018. New episodes every week!

Post it! Share it! And buy tickets! See you in July!

Otis, Nadia, Tony, Pete, Yvette, Beth and more – A Wild, Wild Goose!

By 2019 Festival, Goose NewsNo Comments

Hey, Wild Goose what do we do between the time Otis Moss III gathers the 2019 Goose on Thursday evening and Bishop Yvette Flunder sends the Goose out on Sunday morning? We add Nadia Bolz-WeberTony Campolo, and Pete Enns into the mix and we bring Beth Nielsen Chapman to sing – AND THAT’S JUST FOR STARTERS – and we have another really great, really WILD, Wild Goose!

Yes, you got it, we open with OM3 and we close with Bishop Flunder, and Nadia, and Tony, and Pete, and Beth – and more and more to come!

Are you as excited as we are? Help us spread the word!

Spirit. Love. Justice. Dirt.

By 2018 Announcements, Goose News, Guest PostNo Comments

Guest post by breathesinglove

7/14/18, Hot Springs Campground

I am literally covered in dirt. Sweat is dripping down my…well, everywhere. Noises surround me in a beautiful symphony of love and peace. Justice-seeking people of all ages singing, dancing, listening, sharing stories while drinking beer or fresh squeezed lemonade. Everyone around me is covered in dirt, too. Some have body paint or colored powder on their bodies, some have glitter feathers in their hair. Many have sayings or symbols on their clothing, promoting love, community, peace, hope.

Our hearts are so full of joy and the sense of community is so strong that we don’t notice whether or not the stranger next to us is covered in dirt or took their “showers” in the river yesterday. Near the bench where I sit is the amazing Mark Miller leading us in worship, saying, “You are a child of God. No matter what the world says or thinks about you.”

Someone just brought me a chocolate, with a smile and a sense of gratitude for sharing my story. This stranger I met just a few minutes ago, and now we share things. Yesterday I was invited to a potluck supper, to share in a meal with a “tribe with no name.” I had nothing to offer but a smile and grateful heart, and the tribe welcomed me without question. Some familiar faces around the campsite greeted me with smiles and hugs.

————————

The Wild Goose Festival is a place where strangers quickly become friends, where the Spirit’s presence is thicker than the humidity, and the kingdom of God is a glimmer in each person’s eyes. Hope stirs in our souls and permeates the campground as each person’s voice enters the conversation and is honored and celebrated. We lament with one another as we share stories of grief, pain, and suffering. We celebrate one another’s uniqueness and the beautiful expressions of community and interconnectedness. Art, music, storytelling, nature, food, drinks, laughter, hugs, silence, dancing, conversation, meditation, blessings, prayers, chants –these are our ways of engaging with one another and with God. This is how we “goose.”

Each year I leave the Goose with a heart full of gratitude, a mind buzzing with ideas, and a greater sense of hope, that I am not alone in this work of compassion and justice. I’m inspired to keep breaking down the walls of prejudice and leading people into a greater sense of community, based on God’s unconditional love and grace.

I am “Deacon Shannon.”  This is my story.

Shannon LeMaster-Smith is a Deacon in the United Methodist Church, a clergy order ordained to Word, Service, Compassion and Justice. She currently serves in the Western North Carolina Annual Conference. She has a M.A. in Conflict Resolution and 10+ years of experience in youth ministry. Her call is to help people experience the transforming love of God and the power of the Holy Spirit and to equip and empower them to share God’s love and grace with others. She enjoys singing and playing board games and is married to her best friend, Dr. Jonathan LeMaster-Smith.

A Goosey Gathering

By Goose News, Wild Goose StoriesOne Comment

Hospitality and kindness are at the heart of the Wild Goose community. So much so that someone who was once simply providing a service to our community actually became a part of it. 

So, we packed up our Subaru, made the pilgrimage north, and pitched our tent. As luck would have it, we had the cleanest port-a-potty in the history of port-a-potties right across from our campsite. So my wife, being the sweet soul she is, made it a point to make sure she met and thanked the person who cleaned and stocked our little corner of heaven.

That person was Mike from Griffin Services in Asheville. Mike came over from Asheville twice a day to clean and restock all the port-a-potties at the festival and, as Keller Williams sings, ‘We fell in love in a port-a-potty line’!

As we became familiar with his schedule, it was easy to speak with him and thank him for his service to us and the festival. Mike said we should put in a good word for him at corporate; which we did as soon as we had cell service again. 😏

Fast-forward to the next year and we’re coming into Hot Springs with our pull-behind camper down the hill from Marshall with a parade of folks behind us. (We’re from Florida -PEOPLE, driving down these hills is crazy.)

They were honking and waving (at least some of them were waving, some were also giving hand signals) like we

needed to pull over. Of course, there’s no spot to pull over ’til the bottom and when we did get stopped, we realized our bike rack had failed us and our bikes were dragging behind us. So, who pulls up behind us with a flatbed full of port-o-potties? Our boy Mike!

We reintroduce ourselves, say a little thank you that no one was harmed by our bike-dragging debacle, and Mike immediately loads our bikes on his flatbed and delivers them directly to our campsite at The Goose.

Now on to last year, after another call to Griffin, Mike is upset with us because they’ve made him supervisor due to our ringing endorsements over the last two years. However, after he forgave us for that, he decided that he’d maybe spend a night or two at our campsite; which he did. As we had the opportunity to spend time with Mike and hear more of his story, he quickly became part of our tribe.

We shared meals, stories, and, most importantly, on Sunday morning we shared another meal; communion with Mike.

This year, if you stop by Intersections campsite (it’s more of a compound, actually), Mike will be with us for the whole festival and you can share your story and a meal with him!

See you soon!

Tim and Jan Kerr

Stories like this happen all the time at Wild Goose. This year, come expecting amazing things and be ready to share yours! 

 

What The Goose Gives Me

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I wonder what the Goose will give me this year.

When I pull into Hot Springs, it will be my sixth consecutive Wild Goose. Each year I attend on behalf of Chalice Press, which has sponsored Wild Goose since 2012. I’m there to work: Finding new authors, promoting our new titles, creating connections, scouting the future of progressive Christianity, that kind of stuff. There are the constants: inspirational worship, imaginative presenters, unique participants, and of course pop-up thunderstorms followed by breathtaking sunsets.

But Wild Goose has made a deep personal impact on me – it’s left a mark. Whether it’s the setting, the mindset, the culture, or in my case merely coincidental timing, each Wild Goose has been a different experience for me. And it’s not always about the programming.

In 2013, I brought my son with me. We celebrated his 14th birthday with the Indigo Girls, the Lost Dogs, fireworks, mud up to our ankles, and the spellbinding Rev. William J. Barber II. My son still talks about his Wild Goose experience – as he continues exploring a call to ministry while heading off to college in August. Wild Goose gave me a son who listens for God.

In 2014, I came solo to Wild Goose catching my breath, my marriage having just avoided breaking up (for the moment), my heart mending, my mind needing a change of scenery and a change of pace. Wild Goose gave me hope.

In 2015, I came solo and broken. The divorce I’d worked so hard to avoid finalized while I was at the Goose. I needed time to sit by the river to reflect, to mourn, to let go, to hold on, and to begin the process of figuring out who the new me was going to be. I found a few rocks, figuratively labeled them with my pain and guilt, and threw them away into the river, hoping to be relieved of those negative emotions and start anew. Wild Goose gave me a new start.

In 2016, I came with friends, feeling better about my situation yet heartbroken that one of those friends had a cataclysmically awful month, far worse than where I had been the year before. Our circle of friends hoped and prayed to provide support or relief or hope or whatever was needed, at that moment and in the tough times to come. Wild Goose gave me compassion.

In 2017, I came with my new girlfriend, on top of the world. Sharing that experience with a Goose newcomer – but, more importantly, with a woman/pastor who has helped me see the world and my ministerial work in new, God-embraced ways – has given Wild Goose a new depth I hadn’t seen before. Wild Goose gave me new vision.

In 2018… well, I don’t know about that yet. I know who’s on the program and what work I will have to do while I’m in Hot Springs. But as I walk beneath the verdant canopy and watch the French Broad River flow by and wring out my rain-drenched clothes (because let’s be honest: it’s gonna rain), I know the Goose works in mysterious ways, and I can’t predict what that experience will be like. I just have to go with the flow.

May you find yourself going with the flow at the Goose, at home, sitting in traffic  – wherever you need to think differently, to rest, to find inspiration and hope.

We’re so thankful to have Chalice Press as a longtime partner of the Wild Goose Festival. Learn more about their work at ChalicePress.com

Your Tribe is at San Francisco Theological Seminary.

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Your Tribe is at San Francisco Theological Seminary. Take the next step on your journey here. 

If Wild Goose is the festival, SFTS is the after party. Ok, we’re not saying life on our campus is on par with 3 days of gettin’ down in Hot Springs, NC… it is a graduate school, after all. And we hear that some professors (we’re not naming names) assign A LOT of reading. But we didn’t choose this path because it’s easy. We were called. Something inside told us we needed to make a difference in this big, ever-changing world. San Francisco Theological Seminary will prepare you to take that passion and put it into action, whether it’s in the ministry, spiritual direction, or using your degree to be a greater, more compassionate leader of a nonprofit.

Need more?

We Stand for All the Good Things 

DIVERSITY

EQUITY

INCLUSION

And we walk our talk.

Heard of the Beyoncé Mass? That was us. Rev. Yolanda Norton and her Beyoncé and the Hebrew Bible students came up with the concept that resulted in nearly 1,000 people attending mass at Grace Cathedral in San Francisco on a Wednesday night. It was about inclusion. It was about EVERYONE feeling God’s love and acceptance in a place of worship, AND outside those walls. That’s what we believe, and what you’ll experience at SFTS.

Need more convincing? 

Really?? 

PREVIEW WEEKEND NOVEMBER 1-3, 2018

Ok. How about you come visit us for a few days and see for yourself. We just happen to be hosting a Preview Weekend November 1-3.

Attend classes & worship. Meet faculty & staff. Hang out with current students and ask them all the questions. Visit the GTU.

Eat delicious food & stay on campus—OUR TREAT.

Here’s a quick video of what it’s like.

Did we mention that we’re in the San Francisco Bay Area?

Gorgeous.

Super fun.

Amazing food.

Your. Tribe.

Stop by our booth on Main Street and talk to Isai Garcia from our Admissions Team about our MDiv, MATS, Online MATS, and more…

Can’t wait? Sign up for Preview Weekend right now! See you there!

Bridging the Gap | Praxis Forum Group

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The Praxis Forum is a group committed to bridging the gap between academic work and on-the-ground efforts in religion. We conduct our own scholarship efforts, but our main focus is the realization of these efforts. We want to emerge from the dusty books and abstract ideas and hit the ground running, putting our knowledge into practice. Praxis!

Praxis is a group attached to the Westar Institute, a non-profit research organization committed to studying the Christian tradition. Westar works to improve religious literacy in the public as it pushes the envelope with cutting-edge scholarship.

Even for an educated audience, sometimes understanding experts can be like wading through molasses. Or maybe we understand it but do not feel like we can put it to use. The ‘so what?’ of religious studies can be stifling. This is where the Praxis Forum comes in.

What could this look like? Perhaps it is a discussion circle debriefing academic discourse. Maybe it is something more artistic, such as a podcast series or theatrical production. It could be tied to worship, such as a sermon, devotional, or Taizé service. Whatever it may be, we want to act on scholarship and make it something tangible. 

We are primarily interested in Christianity but we are not exclusionary of other faith traditions. All of us are concerned, interested, or involved with religion in some way. Many of us are pastors, work in chaplaincy, or are in religious studies. Many of us engage with material in our art or community events. Some of us are religious, some of us are not. Some of us don’t quite know what it means to be religious but see something important in faith traditions. And faith traditions are transforming rapidly and affecting everything from family structures to national policies. We are invested in the research and the conversations and desire to do more.

We hope to make scholarship more accessible and more tangible. We yearn to find more ways to engage audiences who are committed to critical thinking in their studies or spiritual lives. Whatever your interest level, faith, or education, Praxis welcomes you to join us in conversation and practice.

To be considered for membership please tell us in 500 words or less: How do you see yourself and/or your work in relation to the mission of the Praxis Forum? Submit your response along with a current resume or CV to praxis@westarinstitue.org

Praxis Membership gives you:

  • A part in an integrated network of leaders
  • Ability to apply for funding to attend Westar Spring meetings
  • Access to Member-only meetings at events
  • Access to Member-only resources
  • Ability to host, lead, and/or attend Praxis events around the country
  • Deeply discounted fees for events
  • $40 annual membership fee to be renewed every year

Website: https://thepraxisforum.com/

Twitter: @PraxisF


We are so excited to have Praxis Forum Group as a part of #WildGoose2018

Not Fences, Lord, but Tables

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In 2017, a group of students from Wake Forest University School of Divinity published a collection of prayers and poems titled Words Made Flesh. I begin by sharing one poem from that collection:

THE BODY, RE-MEMBERED

A prayer for Holy Communion

Not fences, Lord,

But tables.

No us,

No them,

But the whole body—

Re-membered.

Here at the table

We are hosted by Jesus,

Called into wholeness

Through radical hospitality,

Put back together

Through the breaking of the bread,

Filled up by the extravagant pouring out

Of your Great Love.

Here at the table

The shards of our hearts

Become a mosaic of hope.

We, the body,

Are re-membered

To be sent out again,

Grace-filled table-builders

In a fence-laden world.

— Nicole Newton (MDiv ‘17).

The unfortunate reality is that today’s religious culture no longer guarantees everyone a seat at the table. Rather, it seems that more barriers are being constructed that prohibit us from being in holy communion with one another. But, what if this reality was reimagined? What if theological education focused on providing space for religious leaders to sit at tables with the whole body? What if theological education re-membered community by evaluating new emerging patterns of religious life and built opportunities for new collaborations? Would we then see more “grace-filled table-builders in a fence-laden world?”

At Wake Forest University School of Divinity, we have explored exploring these questions with intentionality and investment. Our newest result? The Collaborative for Public Religious Leadership. The Collaborative for Public Religious Leadership connects the School of Divinity with community partners in the work of justice, reconciliation, and compassion. Through this collaboration, we aim to transform both ministry and theological education through innovative community partnerships and projects such as:

  • The Art of Ministry Curriculum which focuses on vocational formation through the integration of classroom and internship-based learning to introduce students to the life and work of ministry.
  • Clergy Making a Place: Early Career Pastors as Generative Community Leaders, a pastoral leadership initiative that connects clergy with business and civic leaders to effectively engage and respond to today’s social challenges.
  • The Faith-Based Nonprofit Leadership Certificate Program, an online course aimed at building the skillset and knowledge of those leading and forming nonprofits.
  • Food, Health, and Ecological Well-Being Program,  which helps cultivate faithful leaders to work on food insecurity, health disparity, and/or ecological degradation.
  • “The Foundry House,” an intentional Christian community that offers young adults from varying backgrounds and life experiences the opportunity to create a residential community that exemplifies the love of Jesus Christ.
  • Practitioners-in-Residence, a program that presents short-term residential experiences at the School of Divinity for ministry practitioners to reflect on, read and write about, ritualize, and be in conversation with curious students, faculty, staff, and community members who share interests in the practitioner’s field of work.
  • Worship Planning as a Spiritual Practice Congregational Partnership, a co-learning initiative between the School of Divinity and partner worshiping communities to promote worship services that cultivate a spirit of gratitude and collaborative hospitality, and embody Gospel care in and to the world.  

Through such partnerships and projects, The Collaborative for Public Religious Leadership explores place-based pedagogies with faith communities and community partners to better engage wisdom about the life and work of ministry that is emerging in the practice of ministry. Instead of building fences, we are deconstructing them through collaboration.

I invite you to take a moment and further explore The Collaborative for Public Religious Leadership on our website and see how you or your organization may be able to sit at the table with Wake Forest University School of Divinity. Additionally, whether you are a prospective student, an alumni, or a potential collaborative partner, I invite you to stop by the Wake Forest University School of Divinity exhibit tent at this year’s festival to learn how you can engage with us in the work of justice, compassion, and reconciliation.

Rayce Lamb, Director of Ministry & Vocational Exploration

Wake Forest University School of Divinity


We’re so pleased to have Wake Forest Univseristy School of Divinity as a partner and sponsor of #WildGoose2018