This fall and winter, our adult formation and fellowship offerings focus on forming small trusted networks – whether oriented around a shared journey like grief, parenting, or discernment, or simply a small group that meets often to share and pray. Eighteen months of pandemic life have shown many of us that we need more trusted friends to help sustain us in difficult times – and one of the most important ways people grow in faith is in conversation with other faithful folks. So I’m excited to be able to offer the opportunities below.
Besides these new offerings, there are existing groups within the church that always welcome new members, including the Wednesday and Saturday book groups, and the Monday morning art group. (All are currently meeting online, but hope to return to in-person in time.) Our youth groups also function as holy communities for those who participate. New kids are always welcome, even if they’re not otherwise involved in church or attend another church.
If you feel a tug towards gathering with a smaller group of fellow Dunstanites, but don’t see something here that feels like the right fit – or even have an interest in convening your own group – let Rev. Miranda know!
If you are interested in any of these opportunities, talk to Rev. Miranda, call the office at 608-238-2781, or use the Contact Us form on this site.
SMALL GROUP OPPORTUNITIES…
Contemplative Prayer Group: Jamie S. would like to convene a small group that will meet on Wednesday evenings (7:30 – 8:45) three times a month to explore and practice different approaches to contemplative prayer together. This group will get started in October. It will gather online at first, with the option to move to in-person when circumstances permit.
Weekly Fellowship Group: Marian and Chris B. will also be convening a small group to meet on Thursdays at 7pm, for regular conversation and shared prayer.
Bereavement Group: Grieving the loss of a loved one is the most difficult and painful of life’s experiences. Maybe your grief is recent, or perhaps a long-ago grief still often comes to mind. Join a circle of companions who are going through similar experiences. Healing often begins when people are able to share their grief stories, their struggles, their questions, and what is helping them come to terms with their situation. The group will be facilitated by Gloria Alt, spiritual guide and Certified Bereavement Companion through the Grief Training Center of Wisconsin. We will meet over Zoom Thursday evenings from 6:30-8, or Saturday mornings from 9-10:30. The groups will meet for 6 weeks beginning September 23/25.
Group Spiritual Direction: Do you ever feel you’d like to meet with others who are on a path to encounter the Holy more deeply? Group Spiritual Direction is an opportunity for a small group (3-4 people plus facilitator) to meet on a regular basis to support one another in their spiritual lives. The unique process for Group Spiritual Direction incorporates times of silence, structured times for sharing for each individual, and group response arising out of reflection and intercessory prayer. The group would meet every other week for 4 sessions, with the possibility of going on after that if group members wish to do so. (There would be a nominal charge per session if the group continues; cost should never be a barrier to participation.) The group will be facilitated by Gloria Alt, a trained spiritual guide. The group could be focused on Discernment and Transition, for those exploring a new season in life; on Grief and Loss; or on general reflection on life and where God is at work.
Spirituality of Parenting is a monthly gathering after the 10am service. People for whom parenting is part of your spiritual journey are invited to a time of sharing and mutual support. This offering will be hybrid, with the opportunity to join in person or online.
Drop-In Heart Check is a monthly opportunity for shared reflection on the week, using the tools of the Ignatian Examen. (You don’t have to be familiar with the Examen to participate!) We will gather after the 10am service. This offering will be hybrid, with the opportunity to join in person or online.
Younger Adult Gathering: There is interest in re-convening a monthly Younger Adult Gathering – for folks under 40, more or less. If you’re interested, let Rev. Miranda know! I’m especially looking for people to help plan and convene these gatherings.
FOR KIDS & YOUTH… We’ll begin the year with outdoor Sunday school for all ages, during 10am in-person worship on Sept. 12 and 19, and continuing in October. StoryChurch on Sunday evenings will continue as an online offering for younger children.
Take-home materials will be available for those who prefer to stay away from in-person gatherings for now.
A Scripture Drama Club will meet after 10AM church once a month to prepare a drama for the following Sunday. This gathering will be hybrid – you can join in person or online, and we welcome actors for both Zoom and in-person church.
Our Middle High Youth Group will continue to meet over Zoom this fall, while our High School Youth Group expects to start meeting in person soon.