|From New England Yearly Meeting:
Register for the Midwinter Retreat by January 2nd
Hello Young Friends!You are invited to our upcoming Midwinter Young Friends Retreat! We will gather at Woolman Hill Retreat Center in Deerfield, MA from Saturday, January 13th at 10 a.m. to Monday, January 15th at 12 p.m. The theme is “We are Whole Beings!”. Over the long weekend, we will explore inward, with choices to engage in conversations and activities around different aspects of our whole selves: gender, sexuality, relationships, mental health, spirituality, and Quakerism. We will also play games, get to know each other, and enjoy the beautiful nature that Woolman Hill has to offer. Anyone who is of high school age and curious about Quakerism is welcome to come!While we will not have a formal sex education as part of the structured retreat program, there will be educational materials available to Young Friends (such as books and pamphlets on sexuality, sexual health, and gender), as well as opportunities to ask anonymous questions to a health professional. This topic is part of the retreat because we hear from Young Friends that our sexuality, gender, and relationships–just like our spirituality–are aspects of ourselves that warrant loving reflecting and learning as we grow through adolescence. At this retreat, we seek to offer an affirming and age-appropriate space for that reflection and learning. We know different aspects of this broad theme will speak to different individuals and nobody will be required to engage in a program that they are uncomfortable with. The goal is to have electives so that each Young Friend can explore topics that feel relevant for them. If you have any questions or concerns about any aspect of the retreat, please be in touch with Young Friends Interim Coordinator Drew Chasse (firstname.lastname@example.org). Join us for a long weekend centered around embracing our wholeness with integrity, understanding, openness to Spirit, and love.
Other reasons to be excited about Young Friends Midwinter:It’s 8 hours longer than our other weekend retreats: more time to get to know one another and have fun!We sleep in beds and there are showersCozy fireplace in a 150-year-old farmhousePlease note that this retreat will begin on Saturday morning on January 13th (rather than Friday night on the 12th). Young Friends may arrive between 10:30 and 11:30 a.m. on Saturday, and leave between 11:30 a.m. and 12:00 p.m. on Monday.
This retreat does fill up, so please register early to make sure you get a spot! The deadline to register is Monday, January 2nd.
I really hope we’ll see you later this winter!
Drew Chasse, she/they
Interim Young Friends Coordinator