The call to deepen our spiritual lives and inspire faithfulness among Friends moved FUM to launch the first Stoking the Fire retreat in 2015. This year, the gathering goes virtual as we adjust to a world still fighting a pandemic. We’ll be gathering over Zoom on May 21–23.
Speakers at this year’s virtual retreat will include Bill Jolliff, Katie Ubry-Terrell, Bryce Coefield, Paul Bock, Janine Saxton, and Colin Saxton.
• Bill Jolliff is a poet, literary critic, songwriter, song-leader, and preacher whose work has appeared in hundreds of publications. Originally from Magnetic Springs, Ohio, he now serves as professor of English at George Fox University in Oregon and worships at North Valley Friends. He’s passionate about singing old gospel songs.
• Katie Ubry-Terrell finds it impossible to condense the beautiful life the Creator has given her into three to five sentences, so instead she’ll steal a line from Henri Nouwen: “For most of my life I have struggled to find God, to know God, to love God. I have tried hard to follow the guidelines of the spiritual life—pray always, work for others, read the Scriptures—and to avoid the many temptations to dissipate myself. I have failed many times but always tried again...” Katie is currently praying and failing and trying again in New Vienna, Ohio, where she is a member of Fairview Friends Meeting in Wilmington Yearly Meeting.
• Bryce Coefield is an activist-scholar who applies intersectional lenses to address multiple interlocking systems of oppression. He received his B.A. in Africana Studies with an emphasis in Sociology and History from Pitzer College. He holds an M.A. in College Counseling and Student Development from Azusa Pacific University, where he is currently a Ph.D. candidate. Bryce currently serves as the Equity, Diversity and Inclusion Steward at the Oregon Department of Education and has extensive administrative experience in higher education.
• Paul Bock lives in Newberg, Oregon, where he and his wife, Miriam, enjoy gardening, grandkids, and rom-coms. Paul is a recorded minister under North Valley Friends Church and is retired from many years of pastoral ministry.
• Janine Saxton lives in Newberg, Oregon, with her husband, Colin. Janine has been a worship leader in Friends gatherings for thirty years. Her goal is to create a safe and sacred space, using music and voice, where people can experience the transforming power of God.
• Colin Saxton along with his wife Janine, lives in Newberg, Oregon. Together, they are parents to four grown children and a grandson. He currently serves FUM as their North American Ministries Director and Advancement Officer. He also works as Stewardship Consultant for Everence.
On Saturday, a time for service is built into the retreat schedule. The natural rhythm of a spiritual community is to gather in order to scatter. Through worship, fellowship, and study, we find the strength, sustenance, and mutual support we need to grow in faith and readiness to serve. As individuals, we return to our homes, neighborhoods, and workplaces as ministers of reconciliation and agents of God’s hope and light.
During Saturday’s Scattering time, we are encouraged to set aside some or all of these five hours to make ourselves available to Christ through service. You will receive a list of possible service/ministry ideas ahead of time. Until then, reserve that time on Saturday. Begin praying about how Christ might seek to use you as a source of hope and light to others in your community.
As we regather on Saturday evening, there will be an opportunity to share how God may have used our ordinary lives in extraordinary ways.
More information about the retreat program and schedule, and a link with which to register, can be found here: