Blog Archives

HOUSE NEWS: New projects, new volunteer opportunities, new partnerships! Check it out!

Click here to see an entire list of what is happening this week at the Gainesville Catholic Worker.

Lots of new projects, new volunteer opportunities, and new stuff happening at the house this week, which we hope some of y’all will join in on! But before we get to what is going on this week, I wanted to share some photos with you from last week’s event with Brother Cornell West at the Bo Diddley Plaza Downtown with Occupy Gainesville. Check out the slideshow below:

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Tamra, Vickie, Johnny, Rudy and I were all there to hear Brother West speak (amazing). And we bumped into GCW friends and volunteers all over the place: Miriam from Arbor House, Diedre of Roundtable fame, and Willie (who I got a few good photos of with Brother West). If you haven’t read or heard Cornel West before, check him out online and pick up one of his books!

NEW PARTNERSHIP WITH LOCAL MICRO-FARM: Jade Allen and Lynn Chacko, members of the GCW extended family, have offered a partnership between the GCW and their urban micro-farm just a few blocks from UF. We’ll be helping steer volunteers to the micro-farm for a regular weekly workday (Thursdays, starting this week between 8am and noon) and also participate in a monthly big project workday at the micro-farm (second Saturday of each month, 9am-3pm). The produce from the micro-farm will be shared with our friends and neighbors at the cafe and through distribution as necessary to folks who don’t have access to healthy, fresh food. Jade has a doctorate in plant medicine and is looking forward to the opportunity to share with people the ins and outs of running your own urban, sustainable micro-farm and giving people the skills they need to grow their own food too. In keeping with CW co-founder Peter Maurin’s vision, we’re excited at having an “agronomic center” as part of the work of the GCW! If you want to volunteer regularly on Thursdays, or just show up on Thursdays when you’re able to help out, you can call Jade at 352-213-4053 or 352-337-0817 to get directions and let him know you’re coming!

COFFEE ANYONE? Each January we re-start the GCW Coffee Shop, from 1-3pm on Tuesdays. This is an opportunity for people who might need to get out of the cold to drop by, have a cup of coffee or tea (and sometimes a treat), read a magazine or newspaper, and just generally hang out and be welcomed. We’d appreciate a few volunteers to help out with the coffee shop if you’re able. This is a great, relaxed opportunity to both serve and get to know some of our friends who regularly come by the GCW. (Later this month or early next, we’ll also be running Art for All workshops in the living room adjacent to the dining room at this same time.) Set-up begins at 12:30pm and clean-up goes until about 3:30pm. Let us know if you can help out!

RETURNING TO THE STORY: It’s been a little while since we hosted a regular scripture study at the house, so if you’ve been waiting, here’s your chance. On Mondays (starting this week) from 12-1pm, we’ll be studying scripture together. Everyone is invited to join us. We’ll be discussing this week whether we study one book or flip around to different passages or what. If you come, feel free to bring a lunch to eat as we study!

FINAL WEEKEND FOR GALILEO OF GAINESVILLE: This play, created by volunteers and members of the homeless community over the past few years under the direction of the extraordinary Dan Kahn–with many a reading taking place during Dorothy’s Cafe–will end its run this weekend, with a special opportunity on Sunday for a talk-back with the performers. Shows this weekend will be Friday and Saturday at 8pm, then a special performance on Sunday at 2pm. People who are homeless are invited to attend Sunday’s performance for free and participate in the talk-back. The play is at the Acrosstown Repertory Theater, 619 South Main Street.

Hope everyone has a great week and we hope to see you around the house!

HOUSE NEWS: Let the new semester begin! Galileo of Gainesville benefit this Thursday!

Click here to see an entire list of what is happening this week at the Gainesville Catholic Worker.

We’re excited to start a new semester at the GCW! This opening week kicks off with a very special event that we hope many of you will be able to attend. Read on for more info and for a list of some of the highlights for this week…

GALILEO OF GAINESVILLE BENEFIT ON THURSDAY EVENING: This play, created by volunteers and members of the homeless community over the past few years under the direction of the extraordinary Dan Kahn, will have a run this month at the Acrosstown Repertory Theater, 619 South Main Street. Opening night is Friday BUT COME ON THURSDAY, JAN. 12, for the dress rehearsal which is will be a special benefit fundraiser for the Gainesville Catholic Worker House and the HOME Van. Thursday is a sliding scale benefit, so just pay what you can! The play will start at 8pm with doors opening at 7:30pm. We hope you can join us for this show. If not, the play will be performed for the next three weekends at the ART, Fridays and Saturdays at 8pm and Sundays at 2pm. Here’s some more about the play from the ART website: “A modern-day drama centering around an astronomy professor, cosmology, spirituality, and homelessness. This is an original script written by a Gainesville resident, and we are very excited to be able to bring it to our stage! Inspiration comes hard and squirrely into the mind of an astronomy professor. As his accustomed structures crumble, other things are rising…and shining. From classroom to living room to parkland to dreamscape, and from the heights of academia to the grime of street-living, our hero’s journey must include all voices, all visions, to give sense to his expanding sensibilities.”

COMMIT TO A REGULAR VOLUNTEER GIG WITH US THIS SEMESTER: Having a handful of regular, consistent volunteers who can be here week-in and week-out is such a big plus for us! If you are looking for a regular volunteer gig, we would love if you made it at the GCW this semester! Regular spots at the cafe, Breakfast Brigade, Coffee Shop, Art for All, community gardens, and farmer’s market gleaning and food preparation are all available! Every day of the week (except Sunday), we can accommodate you! Take a look at the regular schedule for this Spring 2012 semester at the bottom of the About Us page, and let us know if you’re interested in making a regular commitment! We would be so grateful!

FIRST CAFE IS WEDNESDAY: We need volunteers for this week’s cafe! Prep starts at 9:30am (we especially need a regular weekly volunteer to help set-up the dining room between 10-11am!), serving between 11:45am and 3pm, and clean-up between 2:30-4pm. Let us know by email if you can help!

SCRIPTURE STUDY AT HOLY FAITH ON SATURDAY: If you’re looking to unpack the story at the center of the Christian tradition, join Johnny on Saturday at Holy Faith Catholic Church, 747 NW 43rd Street. Johnny will be leading a presentation and study on “Scripture and Our Morality.” Here’s the description of the presentation: “Love and do what you want.” Really? Is it as simple as St. Augustine suggests in his sermon on 1 John?We’ll explore together six scriptural passages from the upcoming Spring “Why Catholic?” session, uncovering the insights the Bible holds for us on morality, freedom, discipleship, and love.

Looking forward to seeing everyone this week! Welcome back!

HOUSE NEWS: Welcome to the New Year!

GCW Christmas Party 2009

GCW Christmas Party 2009

Dear friends,

We are starting things back up at the GCW after a semi-quiet Christmas and New Year’s holiday. As we usually do, we’ll work back up to a full schedule of activities over the course of two or three weeks. You can click here to see what is happening this week. We’ll also be making some slight changes to the schedule after our start-of-the-semester house meeting later this week, so make sure to check the website and be sure of the new schedule (before waking up one morning at 3:30am and coming to Breakfast Brigade only to find out the days have been changed; not fun!)

We’re also welcoming Kimberly Hunter into our community as part of the Metanoia Semester (click here to find out more about Metanoia and whether you might be interested for Fall 2009). Look for a more formal welcome of Kimberly next week or so. In addition to Kimberly, Patrick, Kendera, Moraa, John, Kelli, Johnny and Gracie (and Rudy) will make up the house community this semester.

NEED BEDROOM FURNITURE: We’re in need of several furniture items at the GCW and we’re hoping some of you may have leads on free or inexpensive items for us. We need ideally a sturdy bunk bed set (but we’ll take a good twin bed frame if we can’t find bunk beds) with mattresses and box springs; a chest of drawers; small book case; lamps; and a small desk and chair. Good wooden ones of any of these would be great (particle board furniture falls apart too easily, especially when getting moved around, and we move stuff around according to needs a lot). Email us if you can give us any leads; we would be glad to pick them up late this week or this coming weekend.

The holidays were really great at the GCW, as we celebrated in numerous ways–a trip to see “A Christmas Carol,” for 15 of our volunteers, friends from the street, and others (courtesy of Monsieur Fezziwig, Dan Kahn); our largest holiday party ever; and a Christmas day meal for several of us in the house, our kids and several of our friends who had nowhere else to celebrate.  At the Christmas party, one of our friends told me quietly on the side, after hanging an ornament on the tree, “Thank you for this party. I hadn’t hung an ornament on a tree for 20 years. This night is really special.” To see photos from our Christmas party, click here.

To all of you who walk with us and help us to keep going, thank you. We hope you’ll join us as we continue this semester with this “experiment in the kingdom of God.”

In peace,

John

HOUSE NEWS: Thanking Iris and Patrick as their Metanoia semester ends

The days at the end of semesters are always sort of rushed and harried. At the the GCW, we’ve tried to ritualize these endings by taking stock of what we are doing and what more we need to do; asking ourselves how well we are living and how our lives (individually and communally) can better reflect our deepest values; and most importantly, naming all that we have and have experienced for which we are grateful.

Fall Metanoia end: One of the most deliberate and enjoyable ways we do this happens each semester’s end at our last Roundtable. The last Roundtable of the semester is typically when we give thanks and celebrate the women and men who have participated in the Metanoia semester with us over the previous few months. So this Thursday, at 6pm, we cordially invite all of you to join us in thanking and honoring Iris and Patrick for their time with us this past semester. Come with stories to share, comments, advice, well-wishes and whatnot. We’ll also give them a chance to say a few words to about their experience at the GCW. It is always a nice evening and we are hopeful that many of you who have crossed paths with them this semester will join us. And don’t forget to bring a dish to share!

GCW on Facebook: A year or so ago, a few students at UF were very kind to set us up with a page on the popular social networking site Facebook. We’re using it to complement our website now and allow for interaction from folks near and far who are part of the GCW community. If you want to join our Facebook group, just click here and join us.

Some more quick links for you:

  • See photos from our recent trip to the annual vigil and action at the School of the Americas by clicking here.
  • See a report and photos from Patrick’s trip to Haiti last week by clicking here.
  • Find some good Advent and Christmas resources from Pax Christi USA by clicking here.

And thanks to everyone for all of the great help this past week! Special thanks to St. Luke’s Catholic Church from Middleburg; they made some exquisite soup (thanks Paula!) and did a great job hosting Sunday’s cafe. And to Nansi Carroll and the choir at St. Augustine’s for donating 10 tickets for us to take folks to see their Advent/Christmas concert last Friday! And don’t forget to go see our own Dan Kahn in the Hippodrome’s production of “A Christmas Carol”!

Click here for the rest of what is happening this week at the GCW.

In peace,

John