the workshops and their presenters – 2020 edition

Welcome to the wonderful world of announcements! We are announcing here what the offered workshops will be this year, and who will be presenting them. So, you can stay tuned to this page to see it update as we add workshops. Thanks for checking us out!


[workshops presented in alphabetical order by title of workshop]

  1. 14th Century Mysticism and the end of the world
  2. Acting for Systemic Change: Mobilizing for a Poverty-Free Canada (12+)
  3. Becoming Neighbours: Walking with Refugee (12+)
  4. Can we make a difference on climate change? (12+)
  5. Circling Our Beloved Community: Exploring Power, Privilege and Identity through an Intercultural Lens
  6. Crafting, Tradition, and the Importance of Oral History (all ages)
  7. Creating Church Community through Visual Art (12+)
  8. Drama Games for All Ages (all ages)
  9. Entitlement and Gratitude (12+)
  10. Failure, foolishness, and joy: conversations with a clown (12+)
  11. Humans of Basic Income (12+)
  12. JourneyDance of Manifestation-Dance Your Dreams into Being (12+)
  13. Like a Tree Planted By Streams of Water: contemplative prayer in the forest (12+)
  14. Nothing About Us Without Us: Community Resilience and Institutional Trauma
  15. Praise the Lord and F**k the Police (12+)
  16. Ritual and Community Building (12+)
  17. Rooted in Creativity (12+)
  18. SCM and the past and future of multi-tenant Co-operative Housing
  19. Screenprinting (all ages)
  20. Singing Our Way Home (12+)
  21. Subversive Living: Fighting the Cis- Hetero- Patriarchy through Identities (12+)
  22. Tools Beyond Rules (for Radicals)
  23. Ultimate Frisbee (all ages)
  24. Working Out Our Faith: The Church Promotes Peace in the Philippines
  25. Wool Felt + Weaving (all ages)
  26. Waldorf Fun (all ages)

14th Century Mysticism and the end of the world

Andrea Budgey and Maggie Helwig

Workshop description :

Plague, war, and death everywhere – and religious radicals talking about God. What can we learn from the great mystics of Europe as we face the horrors of late capitalism, colonial violence, and global injustice?

Maggie is the rector of the Church of St Stephen-in-the-Fields, an author, and a nonviolence trainer. Andrea is the Humphreys Chaplain at Trinity College/University of Toronto, the priest-in-charge of St Theodore of Canterbury, and the chair of the advisory board of the University of Toronto chapter of the Student Christian Movement. Sometimes they lock themselves to banks.

{ back to top }

Becoming Neighbours: Walking with Refugees (12+)

Anika Reynar

Workshop description :

This session will begin with stories from Romero House, a community in the West Bend neighbourhood in Toronto that welcomes refugee claimants. At the heart of Romero House is a decision to say “I trust you.” At Romero House, internal doors do not have locks, and young adults are invited to spend a year or two living in the houses alongside refugee families. This session will also map the West Bend neighbourhood, and the way the church, parks, sidewalks, and streets have offered common spaces to practice neighbourliness. Participants are invited to bring their own thoughts and stories from their own neighbourhoods, as we imagine together what it means to become good neighbours.

Anika lives and works at Romero House and was shaped by the prairies. She grew up in Olds, Alberta, and then later found a home in Winnipeg. Anika thinks a lot about how people move through spaces and are shaped by particular places. You can often find Anika on her bike, growing vegetables, or drinking tea with her neighbours.

{ back to top }

Can we make a difference on climate change? (12+)

KAIROS

Workshop description :

Do you want to see our chances of surviving the climate emergency improved? Do you want to do something about it? Come and learn how to host a “kitchen table climate conversation” and how we can make a huge impact when we speak together.

KAIROS unites Canadian churches and religious organizations in a faithful ecumenical response to the call to “do justice, and to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God” (Micah 6:8).

{ back to top }

Circling Our Beloved Community: Exploring Power, Privilege and Identity through an Intercultural Lens

Niki Andre, Kathy Douglas, and Amy Zavitz

Workshop description:

“The end is reconciliation; the end is redemption; the end is the creation of the Beloved Community… that can transform opponents into friends. ”

Martin Luther King Jr.

Join members of the Forum for Intercultural Leadership and Learning in exploring how power, privilege and identity impact our ability to share leadership, worship, and space in empowering and inclusive ways. Using Circle Process and various tools, we will reflect on our vision for the Beloved Community that MLK championed. By sharing our collective wisdom, experiences and knowledge, we will (re)consider our individual understandings of culture. We will conclude our time together by setting intentions for small steps we can take towards realizing a more interculturally just Beloved Community for all.

Kathy, Faith Formation for Antler River Watershed, Western Ontario Waterways, and Horseshoe Falls Regional Councils of the United Church of Canada. Kathy works with children, youth, and young adults, supporting them in various programs, camps, and faith-forming events. She also supports adult faith formation through church community programs of study, community building, and spiritual practices.

Niki is a songstress, poet and yoga instructor whose lay ministry uses embodied practice to connect people across diverse cultures and faiths. A student of permaculture, she is an ardent advocate of sovereign food, energy and housing. She designs and facilitates faith-based, social justice programming for groups across the country and beyond.

Amy is currently working as the Community Engagement Specialist with Kindred Credit Union and is a seeker and advocate passionate about community, justice and faith. Having lived and worked in Southern Africa and the Middle East, she is on a path of continuous learning about the intersections of power, privilege and identity at local and global scales.

{ back to top }

Crafting, Tradition, and the Importance of Oral History (all ages)

Mike Lickers

Workshop description:

In this workshop participants will be shown how to make some traditional Haudenosaunee crafts, and while doing so will be able to learn the stories and traditions behind them. This workshop is as much about the crafts as it is about passing on an oral history, so that the crafts and stories are never forgotten.

Mike Lickers is a Haudenosaunee activist and artisan from Six Nations, Ontario. Mike has been leading workshops about Indigenous history and culture for a few years has been a traditional artisan for many more.

{ back to top }

Creating Church Community through Visual Art (12+)

Kandace Boos

Workshop description:

coming soon…

Kandace is a multi-disciplinary artist working out of KW. Visual arts has always been a part of how she understands the church and how she sees God. She believes that through depicting ourselves and our inner worlds, we can learn to see where we and others fit in our community and where God is in our midst.

{ back to top }

Drama Games for All Ages (all ages)

Hannah Lyon + Anna Gray

Workshop description:

We will play a variety of improv games. No previous experience necessary!

Hannah is a high school student who loves drama, deep conversations, and meeting new people. Anna goes to an arts school where she studies musical theatre and dance. She loves dance parties and eating chocolate.

{ back to top }

Entitlement and Gratitude (12+)

Lane Silas Patriquin

Workshop description:

Entitlement is one of the most pervasive social and spiritual problems in Western society. But for many marginalized people, it is also essential to self-advocacy and liberation. In this workshop we will explore expressions of entitlement as they can be both healthy and harmful, as well the healing and connective power of gratitude.

Lane is a Christian anarchist educator whose work centres around transgender liberation, climate justice, grief processing and anti-colonial solidarity.

{ back to top }

Failure, foolishness, and joy: conversations with a clown (12+)

Haven Klassen

Workshop description:

Haven will introduce participants to some of the theory and framework behind the art of clown, using storytelling and anecdotes from experiences in clown training and practice. She will also invite participants to play (or observe others playing) a few games she has encountered repeatedly in clown training and, after presenting some historical background, facilitate a conversation about what place clowning might have today in our communities of faith and larger communities (and particularly in the context of nonviolent direct action).

Haven is a caregiver and a therapeutic clown (a member of the nonprofit Red Nose Remedy). She is interested in doing more clowning in churches and as part of nonviolent direct action wherever appropriate. Her vision is not 20 20, but she does wear corrective lenses.

{ back to top }

Humans of Basic Income (12+)

Jessie Golem

Workshop description:

I was a part of the Ontario Basic Income Pilot that was cancelled by the Doug Ford government. I reacted by taking photos of the other BI recipients holding cardboard signs with their handwritten stories on it. Overnight, I went from being a starving artist trying to build a photography career, to political activist fighting for basic income. I have travelled around the world with those photos and have spoken in front of too many audiences to count. I never expected to be an activist, and my work enabled me to get in the doors and talk to some of the most powerful politicians in the country. In this day and age, we’re seeing a lot of political engagement and grassroots activism (Greta Thunberg is probably the best current example of this) and based on my unique experience, I feel like I have a perspective into how something such as a story can inspire a movement and how important (and effective it can be) it is to engage with politics, rather than get cynical and disillusioned.

Jessie has been involved in photography, from weddings, to portraits, to events, for almost ten years. Her passion for adventure has led her to a number of exciting and unique photography experiences. Her photos of humans of Basic Income have been featured on CBC, The Huffington Post, the Toronto Star, the Lindsay Advocate, the Moonshot Podcast in Australia, and Kyoto News in Japan. Jessie is also a classical pianist and a writer, with work that is published in the Huffington Post.

{ back to top }

JourneyDance of Manifestation-Dance Your Dreams into Being (12+)

Sheilagh McGlynn

Workshop description:

Are you seeking something different in your life? What change do you envision for yourself or the world? Spend some time in the JourneyDance flow to bring these dreams and intentions into your body and into your life. After our dance we will spend some time collaging your vision board of change. No dance or art experience is required. This workshop is open to all.

Sheilagh works for the Anglican Church of Canada as the Animator for Youth Ministries. She is also a Registered Psychotherapist and JourneyDance Facilitator. She discovered dance and movement as a self care and healing tool and is excited to offer that tool to others.

{ back to top }

Like a Tree Planted By Streams of Water: contemplative prayer in the forest (12+)

Leanne Wild

Workshop description:

This workshop will use the practice of silent attentiveness to/in the woods as well as practices and texts from various ancient forms of christian contemplative prayer to provide an opportunity for prayer (possibly unlike anything you’ve called prayer before!) in and among the community of the forest: our fellow created beings. It could be called ‘lectio natura’ (something like ‘lectio divina’, an ancient method of prayer through silent attentiveness to specific words of scripture): we will ‘read’ from the book of creation. As we slowly wander a path through the woods we will alternately listen (to short readings; questions or prompts), perceive, meditate, share observations, walk, stand and sit.

Leanne has been a community development worker, trainer of camp leaders, writer, high school drama teacher, grief support facilitator, and theology student, and has been a lover of both the woods and Jesus since she can remember. Her recent experience of homeschooling led to new ways of seeing and being in the woods; and her experience of a Theology course in Contemplative Prayer led to new ways of knowing and understanding prayer. Together, these discoveries have opened a space for praying in a way that is instinctive, gentle and powerful, and she has been sharing it with others whenever she can.

{ back to top }

Nothing About Us Without Us: Community Resilience and Institutional Trauma

Emma Taylor Hansen

Workshop description:

coming soon…

{ back to top }

Praise the Lord and F**k the Police (12+)

Dan Oudshoorn

Workshop description:

Because wealthy men want the future to be a continuation of the present, we are looking at the increasing privatization of the commons, the ongoing dispossession of the many, the sixth mass extinction, and the destruction of life as we know it. Given that a few are imposing this on the many, the police have a critical role to play in bringing this future into being. Therefore, anyone invested in bringing an alternative future into being needs to explore ways to break the law, crime, and f**k the police. This workshop will explore how those who made themselves accomplices of the state-executed terrorist, Jesus, provide us with a model of life-giving lawlessness. *Note this session will include explicit language.

Dan is a father, lover, fighter, friend, and failure. He has spent more than twenty years actively pursuing life and mutually liberating in the company of the oppressed, abandoned, dispossessed, and left for dead. Currently, he is actively involved with SafeSpace London (a drop-in centre run by current and former sex workers for current sex workers) and his three volume series, “Paul and the Uprising of the Dead” is scheduled to be published in Spring, 2020.

{ back to top }

Ritual and Community Building (12+)

Kimmothy Cole

Workshop description:

The creation and engagement of shared culture invites us into community. In environments where folx assemble from various backgrounds, the formation of shared culture can be a key to unlock a sense of shared vision. Ritual is one way to co-create a shared identity based on the specific needs and preferences of community participants. Ritual and Community Building begins with conversation and facilitator sharing about the structure and tools of ritual. Participants will then utilize this information and their own knowledge and aesthetic preferences to practice inventing new rituals for their daily practice or community space. Participation in ritual building is encouraged, but observers are welcome.

Kimmothy is an educator, collaborator, performer, designer and ritual artist. Their work grows from experiences with devised theatre, songwriting, herbalism, LARP (live action role playing), faith-based community practices, choreography, immersive performance and community organizing. They are currently serving as the Coordinator for Communitas, a community initiative and sacred collective based out of Austin, TX. Their ritual, instructional and performance work has been featured at festivals, venues and domestic spaces across the US.

{ back to top }

Rooted in Creativity (12+)

Dawn Leger

Workshop description:

As bearers of God’s image, we are each invited to participate in God’s creation. As the church is evolving and changing, we are often encouraged to participate in processes involving goals and mission statements. What if we started from a place of artistic creation instead? Spend some time learning how you create, whether it be a piece of art, an innovation, or an idea, and connecting into God’s creative act.

Dawn is the Priest and Pastor of St. John’s Anglican Church, West Toronto. She is also a PhD student at Martin Luther University College studying the impact of engaging the creative process for church leaders. She is interested in photography and music, and loves biking around Toronto.

{ back to top }

SCM and the past and future of multi-tenant Co-operative Housing

Tristan Lang

Workshop description:

SCM played a crucial role in the founding of the Student Co-operative movement in the 1930s. How did the values of SCM become central to this part of the Co-op movement? How has that movement evolved to become a means of providing affordable and community-oriented housing across the continent, to both students and non-students? In an age of $2000+ one bedroom rents in Toronto, is it time for a return to multi-tenant co-operative housing – not just for students this time?

Tristan first attended a meeting of SCM after his research on Student Co-op History led him to discover the important role the SCM had played in starting the Student Co-op movement back in the 1930’s. Tristan’s main focus is on supporting and creating multi-tenant housing co-operatives that are organized democratically and contain elements of intentional community. He is involved with North American Students of Co-operation and he is a co-founder of HOUSE (Housing Ontario Students Equitably), a non-profit startup aiming to build co-operative housing for students and youth around Ontario Universities.

{ back to top }

Screenprinting (all ages)

Rachel & Astrid Erb

Workshop description:

Once again we will be offering folks the opportunity to make their own Cahoots apparel. Bring a shirt, skirt, bed sheet, knickers, etc, and adorn it with the lovely Cahoots logo. If you have a Cahoots shirt that you made last year and no longer want, bring it along to give it to someone else.

Rachel and Astrid are a mom and daughter living in Kingston, Ontario where they’ve spent many years learning together as homeschoolers and dabbling in various artsy-craftsy and musical endeavours.

{ back to top }

Singing Our Way Home (12+)

Niki Andre

Workshop description:

Mostly improvised, sometimes freestyle and always a cappella. Our fully participatory A Cappella Jam is the foundation for an experiential exploration of practicing compassion, collectivity and an openness to being changed. How – and why – can the weaving of individual ideas, voices, and perspectives, into one collective song, inform our social justice work? In intentional yet spontaneous, joyfully spiritual, responsive and unconventional ways. What power do these ways of being bring to both envisioning and realizing a shared future that is Bright – and in the interests of our common good? What are our biggest fears and hopes for the times to come? What are we willing to offer? What are we willing to lose? These personal and collective reflections will inform our circle-singing practice. Facilitator-offered scripture, poetry, and prose will connect the dots. Highlighting these intersecting themes. Come as you are. Voices from a variety of generations, cultures, backgrounds and traditions are encouraged. Sing your stories. Share each others’ songs. Beginners welcome! BYOH (bring your own h2o).

Niki is a songstress, poet and yoga instructor whose lay ministry uses embodied practice to connect people across diverse cultures and faiths. Niki founded Circle Collective to create culture that connects, enCourages and mends. A student of permaculture, she is an ardent advocate of sovereign food, energy and housing. She designs and facilitates faith-based, social justice programming – including her signature A Cappella Jams – for groups across the country and beyond.

{ back to top }

Subversive Living: Fighting the Cis- Hetero- Patriarchy through Identities (12+)

Steph Chandler Burns

Workshop description:

In this workshop, we will explore how to live faithful lives that make room for diverse identities. We will talk about the ways that LGBTQIA+ identity makes the world a more beautiful place, discuss what we can learn about living well from LGBTQIA+ wisdom, and prepare for the future by discussing ways to live more fully (whether you identify as cis and straight or queer) by subverting society’s expected norms.

Steph is a bisexual Mennonite pastor who loves to explore topics of feminism, social justice, LGBTQIA+ identity, and how these relate to living lives of faith. She has completed a Master of Theological Studies, where she focused her work on queer theology, specifically questions such as “What can we learn about God through LGBTQIA+ identity?” In asking such questions, Steph hopes to help prepare the church for the future, with a new, more inclusive understanding of who God can be.

{ back to top }

Acting for Systemic Change: Mobilizing for a Poverty-Free Canada (12+)

Natalie Appleyard of CPJ

Workshop description:

Millions of people live in poverty in Canada. While personal experiences of poverty vary greatly, certain groups are disproportionately affected by poverty and related issues, reflecting multiple and overlapping systemic barriers. But poverty is not inevitable! Drawing from the work of Citizens for Public Justice and Dignity for All, this workshop will explore some of the “best practices” being learned and explored by individuals and movements across the country calling for the kinds of structural change needed to eradicate poverty. Participants will engage in small and large group discussions of case studies and practical examples to co-create learning, ask questions, and engage in personal reflection about how each of us can take action on local and national levels.

Participants will be sharing reading materials for small group discussion. Digital copies can be made available in advance. If any other accommodations would make small and large group discussions more accessible, please let the facilitator know in advance, if possible, or during the session.

Natalie is the Socio-Economic Policy Analyst for Citizens for Public Justice (CPJ), an organization “inspired by faith to act for justice”. CPJ seeks to equip and mobilize communities and individuals across the country to advocate for just policies in the areas of poverty, refugee rights, and ecological justice. Natalie uses her background in education to help convene and share knowledge amongst diverse stakeholders. She is grateful for the influence of a variety of traditions on her own journey of faith and is continually inspired by God’s invitation to participate in love, justice, and reconciliation.

{ back to top }

Tools beyond Rules (for Radicals)

Isaiah Ritzmann

Workshop description:

As we face the future we also face the inadequacies of rules as a tool for moral decision-making. Life is too complex to be easily navigated using rules yet both our faith and activist communities easily fall into “rules talk,” as if clear rules or strong norms are enough to guide us. In the middles age and early modern times theologians recognized the limitation of rules – teaching, for example, that rules are always “generally and for the most part” and that it wasn’t impossible to create a rule that doesn’t admit to some exception. To help those genuinely seeking to live moral lives in confusing situations these theologians invented a method known as Casuistry, a method that helps people discern what the right thing to do is a situation where rules aren’t able to give relief to a perplexed conscience. Together we’ll explore different aspects of casuistry and what it might mean for us today in our era of ecological, economical, and political turmoil.

Isaiah works in both refugee housing and community education in Kitchener, Ontario. He graduated with a Masters in Theological Studies from the University of Waterloo in 2015 and is inspired by the Catholic Worker vision of “building a new society within the shell of the old, where it is easier for people to be good.”

{ back to top }

Ultimate Frisbee (all ages)

Kateri Boucher

Workshop description:

Ultimate frisbee only requires three things: a disc, a space to run around in, and other sweet people to play with! Luckily we’ve got all three. We’ll start the workshop with a brief conversation about Spirit of the Game — a basic tenet of ultimate which means that competition is never “at the expense of mutual respect among competitors, adherence to the agreed-upon rules, or the basic joy of play.” We’ll talk about how this Spirit makes the sport unique and how it can relate to our lives/relationships/communities outside of ultimate. Then we’ll practice some throwing basics before playing a casual, all-ages game. Whether you’ve been playing ultimate your whole life or have never touched a disc, you’re invited to come join us!

Kateri was raised on the sidelines of ultimate frisbee fields in Rochester, NY, and was deeply shaped by the sport and the communities that surround it. She moved to Detroit in 2018 to explore her vocational path (or lack thereof), and she currently works for Geez magazine and lives in Detroit’s Catholic Worker house.

{ back to top }

Wool Felt + Weaving (all ages)

Kiki and Jubilene Brewster-Wild with Leanne Wild

Workshop description:

Fibrearts are for everyone! Come play with wool and string and explore different ways of crafting with re-purposed materials. Make a pocket or little bag or bookmark…or an abstract art piece. Old wool sweaters and blankets can be recycled (shrunk!) into wool felt, which is a lovely, rich material that is easy to sew, even for beginners. Weaving is similarly accessible with a simple cardboard loom and pieces of yarn or string. You are welcome to bring your extra bits of yarn or that sweater you accidentally felted, or use the materials we will have available. We’ll also have various loom and wool crafting methods on hand for demonstration. *Note there will be needles and scissors, so smallish people may need a bigger buddy.

Kiki, Jubilene and Leanne live in Toronto. Between them, they have fifteen years of experience learning and creating with wool felt and simple looms. Jubilene’s early sewing projects were all wool felt creations, and wool is still her preferred crafting material, especially in needlefelting. Kiki is currently smitten with weaving, and has been known to visit the Textile Museum of Canada just to access their table looms.

{ back to top }

Working Out Our Faith: The Church Promotes Peace in the Phillipines

Ariel Siagan , Andy Tan, and Murriam Salman

Workshop description:

Peace is not just the absence of war. Peace may also mean flourishing life: food on the table, accessible drinking water, and roof over the head for the urban poor, land to the peasants, respect of culture for the indigenous peoples. Unfortunately, the conditions of flourishing life is absent among many of the Filipino. Majority are suffering and living in dire poverty. This situation constitutes the absence of peace. In this session we will know and internalize situations of suffering and poverty. We will also collectively come up with possible solutions drawing from the resources of our faith. We will do flexing of our faith muscles here.

Ariel is a student of Toronto School of Theology. He has worked with the National Council of Churches in the Philippines on issues of Christian unity and social justice. He was also a core committee member of the National Federation of Christian Youth in the Philippines, where he organized peace camps and solidarity missions, and relief and rehabilitation efforts to disaster-stricken areas with youth from different denominations.

Andy is an activist and organizer based in Toronto. They are a regional coordinator for the International Coalition for Human Rights in the Philippines. Last summer, Andy participated in a solidarity trip to the Philippines, where they met with human rights organizations and organizations of peasants, women, youth, and more.

Murriam is a student and organizer based in Toronto. She is a member of the Toronto-based Coalition for Human Rights in the Philippines. After working with detained and nonstatus migrants in Toronto in various advocacy roles, she dedicates her time to educating and promoting awareness to tackle the root causes of inequality, oppression and injustice.

{ back to top }

Waldrof Fun (all ages)

Katey Carey and Corey Wellik

Workshop description:

Join us in giving our love and gratitude for the bees and the elements that sustain us. During our workshop we will be singing, dancing, playing circle games, and wool felting bees for the children to take home. Our workshop is for children ages 3 to 6 and our time together will be spent outdoors (weather permitting). We intend for caregivers to participate unless your child is 5 or older and independent. We will be using water with our craft, so plan for your child to get a little wet!

Katey and Corey are both early childhood educators at the Detroit Waldorf School. Through their teaching, they foster interdependent relationships between children and the world around them, support a compassionate spirit and a strong force of will in young children, and work alongside parents and primary caregivers to raise the next generation of children with a healthy, anti-racist, and cooperative identity. Corey loves growing mushrooms with her neighbor, gardening, drawing, and noticing. Katey loves to sing, smile, and can usually be found with her head stuck in a book.

{ back to top }