From the Director, Robert Bowler (Beau)


Music, art, and spirituality at a retreat and conference center in a Vermont Village

       

       Stone Church Center
         

 

Sound & Spirit        November 2017

 


 

 

Two Weekend Workshop/Retreats 
on Celtic Spiritual Practice and Tradition

 

Celtic spirituality is very popular these days, but it is rare to find authentic teachers who are steeped in daily practice of age-old spiritual tradition. Jane Burns and James Ruff are two such authentic teachers both grounded in living practices that have the potency to transform hearts and lives. Jane will be leading An Introduction to Celtic Shamanism, November 3-5 and James will lead An Exploration of Celtic Christian Heritage, December 15-17. Both weekends are residential, but commuter options are also available for those who live close by. 
 

An Introduction to Celtic Shamanism

 

This workshop will lead you into the hollow hills, the icy sea, and the splendor of the sky, as they once were experienced by the ancient Celtic races. Through discussion and shamanic journeying, we will unravel their unique and poetic vision, their wild and courageous heart, and their deep reverence for the natural world, both seen and unseen.  We will learn how to access, for purposes of divination and wisdom gathering, the Otherworld, and locate our spirit allies there. We will try our hand at shapeshifting, omen hunting and love-talking to nature. We will make power bracelets and bring back a cloak of power from the Otherworld. We will swim with the salmon and run with the deer, as the storied Fianna once did. We will ignite, align and draw inspiration from the three cauldrons of warming, motion and knowing. We will explore the Celtic Medicine Wheel, Samhain and the dark time of the year, the spiritual intention of ordeal, and the transmigration of the soul.

 

Following the Spiral:

Exploring Celtic Christian Heritage




The ancient Celts prized deep connections with nature and the divine wisdom hidden within. Due to current upheavals in our earth’s climate as well as in human society, a deep yearning for a different way seems to be emerging in many of us, which may find resonance in the wisdom of our Celtic Christian ancestors. We will explore what distinguishes Celtic Christian spirituality. We will read selected writings from early Celtic Christians. We will study prayers from the Carmina Gadelica, a collection of early Celtic prayers from the Hebrides. We will sing early Gaelic chants.  We will hear stories of the Celtic saints.  Through the beauty of prayer, chant, Celtic harp music, song, story, and time spent walking and praying in nature, we will seek to deepen our awareness of Christ's presence, within ourselves and in all that surrounds us.


 

The New Stone Church by Candlight Series

Kicks Off December 9th with Aine Minogue


The new Stone Church by Candlelight series, within the longer Stone Church Arts concert series will adorn the winter months with warmth, light and inspiration. Solo artists, hand chosen by Eugene Friesen, our Artistic Director, will perform in the Chapel or the Church Sanctuary, illuminated by candlelight. This short series brings world class solo artists to the wider Bellows Falls community, as well, by giving local students free admission and including them in special question and answer sessions. We also offer a place for a senior project with Stone Church Arts each year for a student interested in arts center management and promotion.

Our first concert in the series will be "To Warm a Winter's Night" with Aine Minogue, Celtic Harp and Vocals at 7:30 pm on Saturday, December 9th, in the Chapel. Aine Minogue, a wonderfully gifted Irish harper and singer, has created music that takes us wandering the winter landscapes of soul and settles us before a blazing fire. Aine brings a sumptuous feast of song, poetry, and dance music, perfect for celebrating the Winter time with joy. 

 

Our Thirteenth Concert Season continues...

 

Here is a full list of the concerts currently scheduled. Click on the links for more information on any of the concerts.


 

November Art Classes


Zentangle Intensive: Grids Galore

with Sadelle Wiltshire
10 am - 12:30 pm, November 11

Did you know you can create your own patterns from simple "grid seeds"? Using the Zentangle method of seeing and drawing "Fragments and Reticula", we'll create unique designs for drawing.
 

Make Your Own Journal or Sketchbook
with Sadelle Wiltshire
1:30 - 4 pm, Sat., November 11

Tired of finding the right journal or looking for a fun way to make some gifts for the holidays? Learn to make your own simple journal or sketchbook for writing, drawing or mixed media artwork.

 

Artistic Embroidery with Cindy  
with Cindy Bowler
10 am - 3 pm, Saturday, November 18

Join Cindy in creating abstract embroidery. She will teach a variety of traditional stitches which will build texture, patterns and character. There are no rules...just have fun and enjoy creating in a inspiring environment.

 

 



Renting our Facilities for your Group's Event 
 

           

Many of our programs are residential, and we offer simple, but comfortable accommodations in our Retreat House and Currier Hall. Tasty meals are catered by friendly, smiling staff. 
We also make our retreat house space and conference rooms in Currier Hall available for groups to use for their events and to individuals for personal retreats. To see when our facilities are available, check our Calendar. Please call or email to book. 

 




 

Office: (802) 460-0110  •  Email: sca@sover.net

Address: 12 Church St, Bellows Falls, VT 05101

 

 

 



Music, art, and spirituality at a retreat and conference center in a Vermont Village

       

       Stone Church Center
         

 

Sound & Spirit        October 2017

 


 

 

Two Weekend Workshop/Retreats 
on Celtic Spiritual Practice and Tradition

 

Celtic spiritualuity is very popular these days, but it is rare to find authentic teachers who are steeped in daily practice of age-old spiritual tradition. Jane Burns and James Ruff are two such authentic teachers both grounded in living practices that have the potency to transform hearts and lives. Jane will be leading An Introduction to Celtic Shamanism, November 3-5 and James will lead an exploration of Celtic Christian heritage, December 15-17. Both weekends are residential, but commuter options are also available for those who live close by. 

An Introduction to Celtic Shamanism
This workshop will lead you into the hollow hills, the icy sea, and the splendor of the sky, as they once were experienced by the ancient Celtic races. Through discussion and shamanic journeying, we will unravel their unique and poetic vision, their wild and courageous heart, and their deep reverence for the natural world, both seen and unseen.  We will learn how to access, for purposes of divination and wisdom gathering, the Otherworld, and locate our spirit allies there. We will try our hand at shapeshifting, omen hunting and love-talking to nature. We will make power bracelets and bring back a cloak of power from the Otherworld. We will swim with the salmon and run with the deer, as the storied Fianna once did. We will ignite, align and draw inspiration from the three cauldrons of warming, motion and knowing. We will explore the Celtic Medicine Wheel, Samhain and the dark time of the year, the spiritual intention of ordeal, and the transmigration of the soul.


Following the Spiral: Exploring Celtic Christian Heritage

The ancient Celts prized deep connections with nature and the divine wisdom hidden within it – in the rocks, plants and animals that share our world, as well as in our souls and physical bodies. Due to current upheavals in our earth’s climate as well as in human society, a deep yearning for a different way seems to be emerging in many of us, which may find resonance in the wisdom of our Celtic Christian ancestors. In this introductory retreat, we will discuss what traits distinguish Celtic Christian spirituality, including images and ideas coming from earlier spiritual systems.  We will read and discuss selected writings from early Celtic Christian theologians that illuminate their thoughts and theology.  We will study and learn some prayers from the Carmina Gadelica, a collection of early Celtic prayers from the Hebrides, as well as some early Gaelic chants.  We will hear and discuss stories of the Celtic saints.  Through the beauty of prayer, chant, Celtic harp music and song, story, and time spent walking and praying in nature, we will seek to deepen our awareness of Christ's presence, within ourselves and in all that surrounds us.
 

Our Thirteenth Concert Season continues...

 

Here is a full list of the concerts currently scheduled. Click on the links for more information on any of the concerts.


 

October Art Classes

 

Portraiture, a drawing class

9:30 am - 12:30 pm, October 14 & 28

Learn the proportions of the human face – yes, there is a system! Using both pencil and charcoal, practice drawing the faces of your classmates, yourself and people from photographs. Jean Cannon has taught art to all ages in the public schools, at Community College of Vermont, Burlington City Arts, the Shelburne Craft School and the Fleming Museum. 


Simple Celtic Doodles & Tangles
10 am - 12:30 pm, Saturday, October 21

This design and drawing class will focus on finding and learning to draw patterns from our everyday environments. Take a short walk from Currier Hall to the Main Square in Bellows Falls to find and see patterns and shapes that might become interesting designs to draw. Bring your sketchbook and phone/ camera and record interesting patterns in nature, architecture and store windows. We'll then return to Currier Hall to view and break down found patterns into simple drawing steps and record these in our sketchbooks.
 

Beginning Celtic Knot Work: Simple Interlaced Shapes  
1:30 - 4:00 pm, Saturday, October 21

An easy to learn introduction to beginning level Celtic Knotwork, this class will introduce drawing simple shapes that overlap and then will focus on learning how to interlace them with pencil, pen and ink. You'll see how different shapes produce unique knots and also get an introduction to the best tools to use to make drawing knots easy to learn. This is a great first -start class to the Celtic Knotwork classes I'll be teaching this winter.


 



Renting our Facilities for your Group's Event 
 

           

Many of our programs are residential, and we offer simple, but comfortable accommodations in our Retreat House and Currier Hall. Tasty meals are catered by friendly, smiling staff. 
We also make our retreat house space and conference rooms in Currier Hall available for groups to use for their events and to individuals for personal retreats. To see when our facilities are available, check our Calendar. Please call or email to book. 

 

Office: (802) 460-0110  •  Email: sca@sover.net

Address: 12 Church St, Bellows Falls, VT 05101


 

 


 

       

       Stone Church Center
         

 

Sound & Spirit        September 2017

 


 

Season XIII Brings Exciting, Rich, Diverse Talent

Here we go. The Stone Church Arts concert season XIII is here. And while we are booking more music for 2018, we are excited about the talent and the diversity coming up.



We begin with our kick-off concert on Sunday, September 10. From Edinburgh, Scotland, "North Sea Gas" (Ronnie MacDonald, Grant Simpson and Dave Gilfillan) has been performing and recording for over thirty-five years and are stronger than ever! "North Sea Gas" is one of Scotland's most popular folk bands with great vocals and tremendous three part harmonies. Guitars, Mandolin, Fiddle, Bouzouki, Harmonica, Whistles, Bodhrans, Banjo and good humour are all part of the entertainment. 


 

On Saturday, September 30 at 7:30 pm, Gary Stroutsos, world flute master, will take us on a journey around the world, from China to Cuba to the Native American West. Woodwinds Without Borders will showcase the music that Gary has explored and mastered throughout his long career as a professional musician.


Here is a full list of the concerts currently scheduled. Click on the links for more information on any of the concerts.



Spiritual Practices Retreat

September 22 - 24, 2017 

 
 

In this spacious retreat, seven faculty will teach the spiritual practices that inspire their lives. We will explore Christian Lectio Divina and Centering Prayer; Budhist Mindfulness and Meditation; Walking the Labyrinth; Worship and Ritual; Prayer Beads; Sacred Song and Chant; Somatic Breathing Practice, and the Eucharist. Our time together will be enhanced by contemplative morning and evening prayer, optional spiritual direction, informal discussion and personal time as well as the main group sessions.

 

 


Art Classes


We offer more classes beginning in September. Jean Cannon has joined Sadelle Wiltshire and Cindy Bowler on the art faculty. Try out an art class and expand your creative horizons.


Architecture & Illusion,

a drawing class
9:30 am - 12:30 pm, September 9 & 30
A little study of one and two point perspective can help a lot to make your drawings of urban or rural buildings look three dimensional. This class includes linear perspective instruction plus practice drawing buildings around town from observation, weather permitting. 

Bellows Falls Tangle Safari
10 am - 1 pm, Saturday, September 16

This design and drawing class will focus on finding and learning to draw patterns from our everyday environments. Take a short walk from Currier Hall to the Main Square in Bellows Falls to find and see patterns and shapes that might become interesting designs to draw. Bring your sketchbook and phone/ camera and record interesting patterns in nature, architecture and store windows. We'll then return to Currier Hall to view and break down found patterns into simple drawing steps and record these in our sketchbooks.


 



Renting our Facilities for your Group's Event 

           

Many of our programs are residential, and we offer simple, but comfortable accommodations in our Retreat House and Currier Hall. Tasty meals are catered by friendly, smiling staff. 
We also make our retreat house space and conference rooms in Currier Hall available for groups to use for their events and to individuals for personal retreats. To see when our facilities are available, check our Calendar. Please call or email to book. 

 


As we Embark on the 2017 - 18 Season

SEPTEMBER 1, 2017
 

 

What’s in a Name?

 

Stone Church Arts was founded in 2004. When we started Immanuel Retreat Center in 2013, it seemed natural to combine this new program with Stone Church Arts, for the retreat center was already housing participants in Eugene Friesen's summer music workshops.
 

However, after a few years, “Stone Church Arts and Immanuel Retreat Center”, as a name for the overall program, became rather cumbersome. Recently, the Vestry of Immanuel Episcopal Church agreed to the overall name of “Stone Church Center” while retaining the two separate names for the two overlapping aspects of the program.
 

 

New Ticketing Software

 

For over three years, Stone Church Center has used Wild Apricot membership software for its website and events management. However, we have more events than members and the ticketing/registration process was often far from ideal. If you wanted to purchase a general admission and a senior ticket, for example, you had to go through the whole process twice, and then you probably had to pay for each ticket separately, too. This proved frustrating to many people.
 

So, after a lot of research, we found Vendini ticketing solution. The advantage is that purchasing tickets is a true shopping cart experience. You can buy a mixture of ticket types at them same time. And before you pay, you may continue shopping, perhaps adding tickets for another concert or a workshop to your cart.


I have already received feedback, however, that the website was better with Wild Apricot, and I agree, but the ticketing (registration) process is far superior and this was the whole reason for the switch. Hopefully, their website template will improve in time.
 

Another advantage is the fun, mobile app Walletini, available for Android phones and iPhone. If you download Walletini, you can see many of the events in our area: those on Rockingham Arts and Museum Project ticketing, Main Street Arts events, as well as those of Stone Church Center. You can also purchase and store tickets on your phone and present them on your phone at the door. 

 

Stone Church Arts Season XIII Begins

 

We already have 16 concerts planned for our 13th season from September 2017 through May 2018, and we are likely to add a few more for next year.
 

For our big kick-off concert we present “North Sea Gas” at 4 pm on Sunday, September 10th in the main church. Hailing from Edinburgh, Scotland, one of Scotland's most popular folk bands with great vocals and tremendous three-part harmonies. Guitars, Mandolin, Fiddle, Bouzouki, Harmonica, Whistles, Bodhrans, Banjo and good humour are all part of the entertainment.
 

Then, at 7:30 pm, on Saturday, September 30, Gary Stroutsos, world flute master, returns to perform once again in the Chapel. He will take us on a journey around the world, from China to Cuba to the Native American West. Woodwinds Without Borders will showcase the music that Gary has explored and mastered throughout his long career as a professional musician.

 

Feedback? Suggestions? Questions?

 

Please email us with any feedback/suggestions at sca@sover.net or by calling 802-460-0110. I would love to hear from you .