Our Spring Retreat was virtual this year.

Saturday, June 5, 2021 at 10:30 AM – 6 PM Eastern time

Our keynote speaker was Nan Lundeen.

Nan Lundeen with bookNan’s spiritual roots run directly into Mother Earth, and her writing life has focused on honoring, celebrating, and advocating for Earth, our home. Gretchen Ohmann, Co-convener, Continental Unitarian Universalist Women and Religion, describes Nan’s book of ecopoetry, Gaia’s Cry: “Nan’s collection speaks of all the glorious aspects of Mother Earth and her inhabitants, the heartbreak at her destruction, and hope—elusive hope—in the courage of individuals, and the magic of seeds.” Nan’s ecopoems and essays are published on the sabbats at Patheos.com and her poetry and fiction in literary journals.

She welcomes opportunities to nurture nature writing, such as creating a student-written newsletter at Brookview Montessori School in Benton Harbor, MI, which her grandson attends, and where lower elementary students report on their environment and how to be better stewards of Earth.

During her 30 years as an award-winning newspaper reporter, she informed the public about environmental issues at every opportunity.

As a member of the Media Team of Citizens’ Climate Lobby, she advocates for policies to combat global warming in quick and powerful ways such as with the Energy Innovation and Carbon Dividend Act. The act, which has been introduced in the U.S. House of Representatives, would charge fossil fuel companies a carbon fee to be returned to the public in order to cushion families’ higher energy costs as our society shifts green.

Nan is a member of the Berrien Unitarian Universalist Fellowship in St. Joseph, MI, where she is a co-music director. She is a charter member of a U.U. women’s circle formed in 1992 in Greenville, SC. She lives at rural Eau Claire, MI, where deer, raccoons and wildflowers never fail to entertain and remind her of Earth’s blessings. Her husband, Ron DeKett, is a freelance photographer. Visit or contact her at www.nanlundeen.com.

Ron DeKett, photo

KEYNOTE: Earth Our Home

South Pier, Silver Beach, St Joseph MIUnited Nations Secretary-General António Guterres has said that 2021 is a “make or break year” to confront our global climate emergency. Nations are falling short of what they must do to lower greenhouse gas emissions. But this year, the United States under a new administration, steps forward to lead both through words and by example. We will look at the beauty and the challenges of our Earth through Nan Lundeen’s poetry, essays, and chosen artwork. Nan will provide resources to help us decide how we can do more to honor and sustain Earth, our home.

Pond by Ron DeKettKeynote's Workshop

Going to the Well: reclaiming ourselves through memoir

The pandemic has taken its toll on all of us. In this memoir-writing workshop, we will explore techniques to replenish our spirits through looking at where we came from, where we have been, and setting intention for moving forward.

You will need writing tools and comfortable clothing. The workshop includes some meditation. Sharing is optional.

Photo by Ron DeKett


Afternoon Workshops

"Grounding Techniques for Trauma & Dissociation" By Heather McMeekan, MS
Join us for a practical skills discussion about how to use grounding techniques to help maintain affect regulation, improve resiliency, decrease the impact of stress, and help decrease dissociation to improve self-awareness and self-expression.

“Sanity Gardening” By Pauline Jackson
In this workshop we will share gardening experiences, ideas and concerns. I'll be discussing garden planning, tips for growth and giving suggestions on correcting common gardening problems.


9:30 am CST -- Meeting Link Opens/Getting Started - log on, adjust your camera, and get settled - 30 min
10:00 am -- In-Gathering Ritual - 30 min
10:30 am -- short break - 10 min
10:40 am -- Keynote - 90 min
12:10 pm -- Lunch Break - 60 min
1:10 pm -- Affinity group break out meeting – 20 minutes
1:30 pm -- Nan Lundeen's workshop - 90 min
3:00 pm -- short break - 10 min
3:10 pm -- Heather and Pauline's Workshops (concurrent) 90 min
4:40 pm -- short break 10 min
5:00 pm -- Social Time - 30 min
5:30 pm -- Closing Ritual - 30 min