The following is a review of 2017 from our Board President, Tammy Breeding
This has been quite the year for us, hasn’t it? A year of changes, setbacks, tragedies, and growth for us personally, and for us as a group!
First, we got organized! We put all of our documents on Google Drive, which affords us the ability to easily store and share our information; We consolidated our information on the contacts we make into one document, for all to see and add to when those contacts occur;
Contacts – Jane, Sarah, Jennifer, Grace, Jocelyn and I have responded to any and all inquiries about us and our status. There are so many people out there who are excited for us! We have folks from all over the Country praying for us, curious about us, and waiting to hear our news!
Church Outreach – Grace and Tammy have spent a lot of time this year (especially Grace) contacting churches around Fort Collins. Our goals are twofold: 1) To Educate local churches about L’Arche and our mission; 2) To find a Church “Home” – a place where we might meet, have both education and fundraising events, who share our heart for people with disabilities so we can begin to create connection and community.
Housing Opportunity – in March we received word through Marilee Boylan, ED for Arc of Larimer County, that an organization called Neighbor-to-Neighbor had been gifted 3 ADA compliant HUD contracted homes. They wanted us to be involved! They planned to designate one of the houses to be for persons with disabilities. We worked closely alongside Kelly Evans, ED for N-2-N. Although we were not yet in a position to take ownership of the home, it gave us a lot of positive exposure and gave us the impetus to file for our PASA application, one step in the long process of creating our first home!
Retreat – We were able to participate in an all day retreat at the lovely Primrose Studio. We had a strong showing of caring people, and we spent the day sharing our faith journeys, learning about our spiritual gifts, as well as discussing the direction we should take moving into the future. We ended the day with a moving Feet Washing Ceremony.
Board Members – we have recognized that in order for us to move forward, we need a strong Board. We have in earnest been asking for and receiving contact names for us to meet with and we are single-mindedly working on that goal.
I have the visualization of us as a great ship. It is magnificent! It’s beauty, grace, and power are a sight to behold! We don’t move quickly, we move steadily to our destination. With our Captain at the helm, and our dedicated and steadfast officers, we sail on the ocean of life. We have so many admirers on board —
Marilee, Kelly, Chadrick, Richard, Steve & Jane, Regan, Linda, Nicole, Jocelyn & Mikel, Jane, Jennifer & Jim, Grace, Brian, Sarah, Joan, Jake, Roxanne and Suzanne, Kendall & Apostolos. We’ve had more than our share of icebergs, but we have persevered, and it feels like we are getting so close to our goal of our first house.
My friends, we are poised to begin next year with heart-centered, faith-filled determination. Starting early 2018, we are going to create monthly Community Nights. Our goal is caring, sharing, learning, daring! We want to to invite not only those who share our passion, but also the curious and the eager to learn about L’Arche, hear stories from our L’Arche Assistants, entertain visitors from other L’Arche Communities, hear from other leaders in the community, and start to build a strong vibrant community.
God is in the Crow’s Nest, pointing out obstacles and steering us to calm waters. We need our Crew to share in the accomplishment of our goals. We need names — we will make contact, we will set meetings, we will thoughtfully and prayerfully discern their gifts and how they align with our goals, but we need you to find those “Genesis People” – The ones whose passion is starting things. We also need the more practical gifts — if you find it within your means and your heart, please consider an end of year gift to help us fund our mission.
I wish each and every one of you a peaceful Holiday Season, with all the magic and joy of the very first Christmas.
Blessings, and smooth sailing in the coming year!