[RivCompanions] update

Billy Reed bill at wlreed.com
Mon Jul 14 15:33:18 UTC 2014

i can be present oct 3, 4, 5th.

On Mon, Jul 14, 2014 at 10:26 AM, Barbi Click <bgclick at gmail.com> wrote:

> We can be there from a Friday eve to a Sunday morning...I only have so
> many Sunday Hot Lunch program I can miss. However, with enough time, I
> might be able to schedule someone else in my absence.
> *Barbi Click*
> *www.linkedin.com/in/barbiclick/* <http://www.linkedin.com/in/barbiclick/>
> *http://feathersandfaith.blogspot.com
> <http://feathersandfaith.blogspot.com> *
> *http://facebook.com/bgclick <http://facebook.com/bgclick>*
>     *“For surely I know the plans I have for you,… plans for your welfare
> and not for harm, to give you a future with hope. Then when you call upon
> me and come and pray to me, I will hear you. When you search for me, you
> will find me; if you seek me with all your heart, I will let you find me, …
> and I will restore your fortunes and gather you from all the nations and
> all the places where I have driven you, … and I will bring you back to the
> place from which I sent you into exile." *Jeremiah 29:11-14
> On Mon, Jul 14, 2014 at 9:17 AM, Claudia & Joe Porter <
> porter45 at bellsouth.net> wrote:
>> We will be away on vacation on the October 4 date.  Claudia and Joe
>> On Jul 14, 2014, at 8:08 AM, Virginia Brown <mothervirginiadb at gmail.com>
>> wrote:
>> Dear Companions,
>> Since I first wrote about the issue involving marijuana at the
>> Motherhouse, several of you have had questions and/or offered comments, and
>> it seems that it would now be well to provide a little more information,
>> including something which has just come to light, so that we’ll all have
>> the same information, and be in a position to make better sense of what has
>> happened, and to make decisions about the future.
>> In my first letter I was somewhat reticent, wanting, I suppose, to avoid
>> any unnecessary damage to Susie’s reputation, and to protect those who had
>> come forward with information as well—especially since valued friendships
>> are involved.  Also, I didn’t and don’t want to state as factual matters
>> which are disputed.  (Nor is there any particular need to “get to the
>> bottom of it”; decisions were not made on the basis of disputed material.)
>> Of particular concern is that growing as well as using marijuana was
>> involved, although this is an area in which Susie’s assertions differ from
>> those of an eyewitness who reports being taken to see plants in two
>> specific locations, and being given to understand that there were others in
>> various locations around the property.  This, of course, is a more
>> serious charge legally.  Susie acknowledges only one plant, which was
>> Abby’s.  We have no reason to suspect that there was ever any selling by
>> anyone, and the Council of Advice required that all marijuana plants be
>> destroyed immediately—which we believe was done.
>> Sadder to me, I learned yesterday from a friend of the Community who has
>> been here for several retreats that at the beginning of November she and a
>> friend of hers, otherwise unknown to the Community, were offered marijuana
>> at the Motherhouse.  She says that she accepted—partly out of friendship
>> for Susie; she spoke with regret and contrition, for having done it in the
>> first place and for not having mentioned it.  She said that she felt
>> that it “besmirched holy ground.”  Her friend, who also works in the
>> legal field, didn’t participate, but apparently looked on with shock and
>> disapproval; it’s fortunate for all involved that she didn’t deem it her
>> duty to report the goings-on to the civil authorities.    As you know, a
>> similar incident of sharing pot with retreatants (one a friend, one
>> otherwise unknown) occurred on July 4.
>> One or two of you have wondered whether there might be some compromise
>> possible.   In a way, this *is* a compromise; an initial reaction to the
>> disclosures was, “Call the sheriff!”  I want you also to know that we’re
>> making efforts to be generous in helping Susie and Abby—and Ed—get settled
>> in a new situation, financially and in encouraging her to take whatever
>> furnishings, supplies, groceries, etc., she may need or want.   I’ve
>> thought about whether there might be some way of avoiding the need for
>> Susie and Abby to move, and I have to say that anything which would address
>> the situation or be even remotely acceptable to the Council of Advice
>> would, I’m reasonably sure, be completely unacceptable to Susie.
>> Finally, several members of the Community (and I’ve discovered several
>> others who are not members of Rivendell) have commented on observations or
>> suggestions, often from quite some time ago, that all was not well—smelling
>> marijuana, being concerned about levels of alcohol consumption, more
>> general concerns about Susie’s functioning.  In retrospect, I feel as
>> though I might have known what was going on; it was just so far off my
>> “radar,” my expectations.  I bear some considerable responsibility.  I
>> think we all wanted to do the best for Susie, and no doubt to avoid useless
>> conflict.  But maybe one thing we can learn from this—me included—is
>> that we really do have some responsibility for and to one another, and if
>> we see something amiss, it’s often better to address it—certainly if it’s a
>> matter of legal and/or moral wrong-doing.  Heaven knows, we’ve had all
>> too many examples of religious institutions failing to face problems, or
>> covering them up, and it just doesn’t turn out well.  Maybe we could
>> have headed off this situation before it grew to its present proportions if
>> we’d been more proactively our sister’s keeper.
>> Yesterday, in conversation with our members in Kansas City, David and
>> Lisa, we recalled that sentence in the agreement regarding sexual conduct
>> which applies much more widely, that members of Rivendell are expected to
>> maintain at least the level of ethical behavior expected of parish clergy.
>> We are, in a special sense, representative persons; and we don’t go
>> around “besmirching the holy.”
>> Clearly, there will be significant issues to deal with regarding the
>> future direction of the Community and the Motherhouse in particular:  Can
>> we keep it?  If so, should we?  In what direction should we now move?  Does
>> this event, which can without exaggeration be described as tragic, open a
>> possibility for “repristinization” of the Rivendell Community?  (Thanks
>> to Cathy for reminding me of how fond I am of this word and concept!)
>> Therefore, I propose that we plan to meet, as many of us as can, in a
>> special general chapter, perhaps in late September or early October, giving
>> the dust a chance to settle and see where we are.  I think we will need
>> actually to be together rather than just to exchange emails.  I realize
>> that not everyone will be able to come, most likely, but I hope as many as
>> can will do so.  Suggestions for dates?  Is a weekend best for most
>> people?  What about the weekend of October 4, Yom Kippur/St. Francis of
>> Assisi?
>> Much love,
>> Virginia
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