Monthly Archives: August 2009

HOUSE NEWS: First Dorothy’s Cafe and more!

Johnny, Leroy and Miguel enjoying the last few days before the full schedule kicks in!

Johnny, Leroy and Miguel enjoying the last few days before the full schedule kicks in!

Dear friends,

For this week’s schedule at the GCW, click here.

Thanks to everyone who helped out with Friday’s Breakfast Brigade last week, and thanks too to everyone who dropped by to say hello and offer their support for the new semester. We’re excited about seeing old friends and the prospect of bringing new friends into our community as well.

MAKING A REGULAR COMMITMENT TO THE GCW THIS SEMESTER: One of the things that we really count on at the GCW is those volunteers who can make a commitment to one of our projects over the course of the entire semester. We love to have volunteers whenever you might be available, but we ESPECIALLY love to have those volunteers we know we can count on week-in and week-out for certain projects. As you look over your schedules for the next semester, we hope that some of you might be able to make a project at the house part of your regular weekly schedule–be it a regular shift at Dorothy’s Cafe every Wednesday, Friday’s Breakfast Brigade, Thursday evening Roundtables, Tuesday’s Scripture Study, Wednesday Movie Nights, Blue House Pants, garden hours, or so on. If you’re interested, let us know and we’ll pencil you!

FIRST DOROTHY’S CAFE ON WEDNESDAY: This Wednesday will be our first Dorothy’s Cafe of the semester. Typically we can count on between 75 and 125 guests to join us at some point during the day for homemade soup, bread, fresh fruit and a relaxing atmosphere. We need volunteers between 9am and noon to help with prep work, noon and 5pm for serving, and 4:30 to 6pm for clean-up. Let us know if you can join us this week or make a regular commitment throughout the semester!

FIRST THURSDAY MASS/PRAYER SERVICE: The first Thursday of each month, we gather as a community to celebrate in prayer together. Usually Fr. John Phillips, our chaplain and the pastor of Holy Faith Catholic Church, will join us in celebrating Mass. If he is not available, we’ll celebrate with an informal prayer service put together by the house community. Join us this Thursday and stay afterward for a potluck dinner (bring a dish to share if you can).

For more on this week’s schedule, including info on Breakfast Brigade, Wednesday Movie Night and more, click here.

Hope to see you this week!

In peace,


REFLECTIONS: On Van Gogh, seeing the light, loving the broken…

Van Gogh's Painter on the Road

Van Gogh's Painter on the Road

From Kelli’s blog, “What am I doing in Paris?”

I took one last train trip before leaving Paris – to Auvers-sur-Oise, the tiny town about 20 miles from Paris where Vincent Van Gogh lived and painted a few months before finally shooting himself.  I missed the daily train from Paris, so I took the RER (suburban train) to Pontoise and then a bus from the train station. Arriving on an empty street in front of city hall, I was surprised at how few tourists were there compared to the numbers at Giverny.  I walked in solitude up a hill toward the “tourist information” building and watched alone a little video about Van Gogh’s stay in Auvers.  Then, with the map provided, I followed a winding path through the village to visit some of the scenes Van Gogh painted while he was a resident.  He was a prolific artist wherever he was, and there were a number of sites marked with a print of the painting that represented it, scattered up and down tiny roads and farmland.

To read the whole post, click here.

HOUSE NEWS: Breakfast Brigade begins this Friday!

Hi folks,

Now that the students are back, we’re starting back up our regular schedule. This week the Breakfast Brigade returns. We have no idea how many volunteers will show up this first time around, so please consider it. We get started at 4:15 baking bread, boiling eggs, and preparing fruit to bring to the labor pools at the crack of dawn. We’d love to have your help!

Next week we’ll be adding back the Cafe, movie night, and the Roundtable. The following week scripture study begins – and we will be on a roll…

Meanwhile, in case you’re bored, we came across a very good episode of Bill Moyer’s journal that we’d like to share with you. You can watch it here. A couple take-home quotes from Cornell West:

[Let’s just] put on the table something that’s very simple. How deep is your love? What is the quality of your service to others? Are you concerned about those on the margins, or do we define a catastrophe only when it relates to investment bankers and Wall Street elites, as opposed to the precious children in chocolate cities?

It’s the funk. It’s the funk of life… That’s what black life is all about. But in the end, that’s what human life is all about. How funky is your faith?

Hope to see you in the sometimes (hopefully) funky Blue House soon!


FOOD: Local cheese… delicious!

Some of you have already experienced the incredibly delicious, smooth, spreadable goat cheese that a friend of the house drops off every Tuesday. For more on good local goat cheese, keep reading below, from Kelli’s local living blog…

“I am always happy to find a new source of local food – and I have a great one in an old family friend who’s living her childhood dream of raising goats. Seriously, she’s always loved them. Growing up smack in the middle of suburban Gainesville (across the street from me), she and my oldest daughter raised goats as part of a 4-H project. A passing phase for my Megan, Kelley went on to buy, breed, and milk goats for ever after.

We have been enjoying fresh goat cheese since last winter – garlic and chive, jalapeno, pesto, walnut-honey, and plain, and we’ve spread it on crackers and toast, crumbled it on salads, and sprinkled it on chili.”

To read the rest of this post, click here.

HOUSE NEWS: Move-in week complete; planning week begun

Dear friends,

August is always a time of beginnings for us. Last week, August 9-15, was “move-in” week at the GCW. Kelli returned from her travels the week before, new community members Lawrence and Leroy moved in a week ago, Kim came home from the Midwest on Wednesday, and we took in our first guest, Miguel, on Thursday the 13th. With the kids, we’re a community of 8 starting off this new semester. Everyone got situated last week, settled in and acquainted with one another.

On Sunday the 16th, we had our house orientation, getting everyone on the same page for the semester, sharing a little bit about ourselves as we look to practice community with one another, and a crash course in the history, philosophy and practice of the GCW. Today (Monday) we cleaned the windows, bathrooms, did some landscaping and general freshening up around the house. We ended the day with out first house meeting of the semester, confirming the overall schedule (we’ll update it on the site later this week), setting start-up dates for our various projects, and putting together the house coverage schedule. We ended with our first official house dinner together and tomorrow we start our “house days” in earnest.

Since the students of SFC and UF are starting a little later this year, we are too. Breakfast Brigade will start on Friday, August 28 and the first Dorothy’s Cafe will happen the following Wednesday, September 2. We’ll add everything else in (Roundtables, Garden Days, Scripture Study, Movie Nites, Blue House Pants, and so on) soon after and be hitting on all cylinders by the week of September 13.

We invite you to reflect with us on new beginnings by sharing a prayer we used at our orientation last night. You can find it on Kelli’s blog by clicking here. We hope you’ll join us this semester and make the GCW part of your life, your community as well.

In peace,