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A sense of #community, of extended #family; a place in which to grow & #discover; a place of the open mind & accepting heart

March 9, 2013

We had several wonderful testimonials at our Fellowship Dinner tonight. Here is one:

WHAT DAVIES MEANS TO ME by Roslyn Winard

Those of us who have been here awhile affectionately call this place “Davies”.  Some of us call it a church, others a congregation, but for all of us it is a place where we can find, and express ourselves in our authentic voice.

The most important aspect of Davies for me has always been the sense of community, of extended family;  a place in which to grow and discover;  a place of the open mind and accepting heart.

If I had to choose the most valuable experiences I’ve had in my 47 years at Davies I would start with Women’s Circle.  This is a sharing group started by Fran Quinlan, an import from Ca., in 1991.  It was one of our first small group ministries.  We had unique discussion guidelines;  the most significant for me were confidentiality and no crosstalk.  Imagine, listening to each other without interruption, allowing each person to discover what it was they felt and believed, while in the process of expressing it.  I would continually come away with the surprise of – Oh, that’s what I think.

Women’s Circle has been going for 22 years, continues to welcome newcomers, and we’re still finding topics to discuss.

In 1988, not yet having discovered my singing voice and being unable to read music, I was invited to join the choir.  To allay my doubts Claire Friday said – just do what I do.  She was an alto and I turned out to be a soprano, but that was the beginning of voice lessons and some 20 years of singing with the Davies Choir.

A more recent experience has been “A Course In Miracles” – something I could not at first see myself participating in because of the Christian based God language.  As a Jewish Atheist the continual mention of God, Jesus Christ, Holy Spirit, etc. was a challenge.  However, in the spirit that is “Davies”, our leader, Sally Jones, had benign translations of these trigger words at the ready.  The basics, as with Women’s Circle, were love, acceptance, listening and growing, and the effect of perception on all of these.

I started coming to Davies in the mid 60’s with my husband Arno who came because of his involvement in Civil Rights.  At first I felt the proverbial “fish out of water” but over the years Davies has become a place to grow, to search for my authentic voice; a place to ask questions and be accepted without answers;  where diversity is real, and embraced;  where nurturing a sense of belonging, of extended family, of community, is a worthy goal.

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