Michigan Friends Center (MFC) in Chelsea, Michigan

Programs at Michigan Friends Center

Michigan Friends Center hosts a number of programs every year designed to engage the community in meaningful and enriching experiences. Programs are generally extensions of the Center’s mission, and are designed to offer something for everyone. If you would like to host a public workshop or event at the center, please contact us.

Current Programs

Previous Seasons

Do you have an idea for a program that you would like to see hosted at MFC? Are you interested in teaching something and think that MFC would be the perfect site for your event? Please email us with your ideas. We would love to hear them.

Current Program Schedule

To register for any of our events, go to our Registration Page

LISTINGS BY DATE- (Click on program names for more details)

DATE

PROGRAM

Saturday, April 21 The Day Before Earth Day
Sunday, June 17 One-Day Meditation Retreat led by Carol Blotter
Thursday, June 21 Summer Solstice Celebration
Mondays: 6/25, 7/9, 7/16, 7/23, 7/30, 8/6 (no meeting 7/2) Seeing Systems: Peace, Justice, and Sustainability

 

 


The Day Before Earth Day
1:00 Saturday, April 21
Donations welcome.
SustainabilityCommunity – Art & Craft – Children & Families – Teen/Young Adults – Ceremonies & Celebrations – Holiday

This year’s Earth Day program will be held the day before. The designated theme is eliminating single-use plastic.

Fun, hands-on activities for kids and adults are offered. Reuse and remake with common plastic materials while keeping them out of the environment, and take home something useful.

Along with the hands-on activities will be a short presentation from Richard Tucker about how the issue of plastics wastes is being handled in other places around the world. Free, with donations cheerfully accepted.

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A Day of Silence and Meditation Practice, led by Carol Blotter
9:00-4:00 on Saturday, December 9, 2017; 2018 retreats will be on Saturday , March 24; Sunday, June 17; Saturday, September 29; and Sunday, December 9.
Suggested donation $30 or as able. Pre-registration requested; contact Carol Blotter at 475-0942.
Spirituality – Meditation – Fundraiser

Each retreat is an opportunity to enjoy the quiet of the country while practicing sitting and walking meditation. This day is appropriate for anyone interested in meditation: beginners will have break-out instruction; experienced meditators can be in silence all day; those in-between can practice and have their questions answered. These retreats are fundraisers for the benefit of Michigan Friends Center.

Contact Carol at (734)475-0942 or cb.meditate@gmail.com to register.

Carol Blotter's meditation practice draws from dual roots in the Quaker and Buddhist traditions. She has been teaching since 1999 and has led more than 40 retreats across the United States and has taught over 50 classes in meditation to spiritual seekers, schools, universities and medical groups. She is a teacher for The Forest Way which is an organization dedicated to providing retreat opportunities conducive to spiritual growth that is both balanced and integrated.

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Seasonal Celebrations
Donations appreciated, please register in advance if possible

Summer Solstice — a multi-generational celebration of the light and growth
Thursday, June 21, potluck 6-7 pm; bonfire 7-9 — at the Friends Lake beach; 
join us for any part (the food will be put away at 7)
Donations welcome
Community – Ceremonies, Celebrations & Festivals—Body, Mind, & Spirit—Outdoors/Wilderness

We will celebrate the longest day with a potluck dinner followed by a bonfire around which to share thoughts, stories, and songs. All ages welcome. Bring food to share and your own place settings. We will provide water and herbal iced tea.

Bring something to share for after dinner as well-- a story, poem, song, some Solstice lore, or just your readiness to partake in what others have brought. This will be a time to explore various ways of celebrating the light. We welcome your spark.

Bring long sleeves in case there are mosquitoes.

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Autumnal Equinox Celebration — a multi-generational celebration of balance and letting go
Saturday, September 22, potluck 6-7 pm; bonfire 7-9 — at the Friends Lake beach; 
join us for any part (the food will be put away at 7)
Donations welcome
Community – Ceremonies, Celebrations & Festivals—Body, Mind, & Spirit—Outdoors/Wilderness

We will celebrate the balance of day and night with a potluck dinner followed by a bonfire around which to share thoughts, poems, stories, songs, knowledge. All ages welcome.

Bring food to share and your own place settings. We will provide water and herbal iced tea. Bring something to share for after dinner as well-- a verse, story or song you like, seasonal lore, a readiness to partake in what others have brought. What does this season mean to you?

Bring flashlights, and long sleeves, and dress for the weather.

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2018 Winter Solstice Sing — a reflection of the season in sound and silence
Friday, December 21, 7-9 pm
Donations welcome
Community – Ceremonies, Celebrations & Festivals— Body, Mind, & Spirit—Live Music, Sound, & Voice

We sit quietly in a circle and teach each other rounds, songs, and chants of the season as they occur to us. The woods around us, our sheltered circle focused on inner light, and our voices are the only elements of this simple celebration of the longest night.

Anyone who enjoys singing and sitting quietly is welcome. You don’t need to be a singer--some just enjoy humming or listening. However most young children do not enjoy this event, since it does not involve any activity other than sitting and singing.

Vernal Equinox Celebration—a multi-generational celebration of balance and rebirth
Tuesday, March 20; potluck 5:30-7 pm, bonfire/circle 7-9 at the Friends Lake beach fire ring or in MFC, depending on the weather (look for a sign on the MFC door)
Donations welcome
Community – Ceremonies, Celebrations & Festivals—Body, Mind, & Spirit—Outdoors/Wilderness

We will celebrate the balance of light and dark and the birth of spring with a pot luck dinner and a circle in which to share thoughts, poems, stories, songs, knowledge. All ages welcome.

Bring something to share -- a verse, a story, a song you like, seasonal lore, or a readiness to partake in what others have brought. What is this season saying to you?

Dress for the weather and bring a flashlight.

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Seeing Systems: Peace, Justice, and Sustainability
7:00-8:30 Monday evenings: June 25, (no meeting July 2,) July 9, July 16, July 23, July 30, August 6
Sliding-scale fee of $30, $45, or $60 (as able) to cover book and other course costs; pre-registration required.
Sustainability Peace & Justice

Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. claimed that whatever affects one directly affects all indirectly -- peace is not possible until we recognize how interrelated we are.

This six session discussion course helps participants to develop systems thinking skills in order to see those connections. We will examine entrenched assumptions that reinforce unhealthy practices and systems. Together, we will envision a more peaceful, just, and sustainable world, discover practical actions we can take toward that goal, and inspire each other to become leaders in our own spheres of influence.

Each session is based on a set of readings from the NWEI course book, with rotating facilitation by course participants. This course is hosted by Michigan Friends Center and offered in partnership with the Interfaith Council for Peace and Justice.

Please register at https://seeingsystems2018.eventbrite.com or contact the Michigan Friends Center office (manager@mfcenter.org).

The six sessions will be:

June 25 It’s All Connected: We usually attempt to solve problems analytically -- by breaking them down looking at the parts. In order to more effectively interpret and solve complex problems, systems thinking helps us to employ various perspectives to look at the whole.

July 9 Peace Talks: Peaceful communication is essential to constructive conflict transformation and thus crucial when addressing topics of peace, justice, and sustainability. We will practice activities that promote effective and nonviolent communication.

July 16 Justice for the Whole Community: In this session we explore environmental justice in four different ways: who climate change impacts, who has access and rights to water, whose community we deposit our waste in, and how the way we grow our food affects the people closest to that process.

July 23 Peace and Sustainability in the Midst of Conflict: As climate changes around the globe, it is likely that conflict will escalate, impacting humans, animals, and other participants in the natural world. In this session we read stories of hope and change, even in the face of oppression, injustice, and formal/undeclared warfare. How can we regenerate our shared world?.How can we visualize and build the inclusive, equitable community in which we want to live?

July 30 Responding to Structural Violence: As Dr. Paul Farmer has said, sometimes people are oppressed, and “neither culture nor pure individual will is at fault,” but “historically given (and often economically driven) processes and forces conspire to constrain individual agency.” Using the communication skills from Session Two, we will work to listen and understand someone else’s experience, perhaps from the readings in the book, and to recognize our own experiences with privilege. While structural violence takes many forms, we explicitly address structural violence in these readings by taking a closer look at race and economic inequality.

August 6 Now What? Co-creating Living Peace: Practice, Engage, Allow, Create, Emerge – the first letters of these words spell “PEACE”. Using this framework and the network of relationships we have been developing, we will think about how we can use what we have learned to make a real difference for good.

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