Spiritual Formation 2017 Do You Seek a Deeper Spiritual Experience? Does Your Meeting Seek a Deeper Spiritual Community?
The Baltimore Yearly Meeting Spiritual Formation Program invites its participants into a deeper experience of God’s presence through retreats, devotional readings, spiritual community and individual spiritual practices. Spiritual Formation provides a practical way for people in our busy culture to turn to God with their hearts through daily spiritual practices, with their minds through spiritual reading, and with their human relationships through local friendship groups.
The Spiritual Formation Program has three elements:
(1) Retreat weekends in the spring and the fall engage participants in exploring their individual spiritual lives and sharing their discoveries within small groups or with other individual participants. (It is strongly recommended but not mandatory to attend the retreats.)
(2) At home, each participant is encouraged to devote at least 15 minutes per day to a spiritual practice. Resources for exploring a wide range of spiritual practices are available.
(3) Also at home, participants attend two meetings per month: a meeting of the entire local group to share hospitality and reflections on a spiritual reading that all have agreed to read; and a gathering with a friendship group, a subset of 3-5 people from the local group. Friendship groups meet at times and places of their own choosing to share personal spiritual journeys and to support one another in spiritual practices.
How to bring a Spiritual Formation Program to your Meeting
- Read the booklet, The Baltimore Yearly Meeting Spiritual Formation Program: Deepening the Spiritual Experience of Modern Friends, to familiarize yourself with the Program.
- Designate a person from your Meeting to be a local contact person. Reach out to Alan Evans (email@example.com
) or Amy Schmaljohn (firstname.lastname@example.org) to get materials to distribute to interested individuals in your Meeting-or invite Alan and Amy to host an informal session or Spiritual Formation workshop at your Meeting.
- Write the name and phone number/email of the local contact person on the poster and hang it on your Meeting’s bulletin board.
- Make periodic announcements about the Program after Meeting for Worship.
- Ask your Meeting’s newsletter editor to include the newsletter information and registration form in the June and July newsletters.
- Encourage members and attenders of your Meeting to visit the BYM website for information about the Program.
- If your Meeting has a conference fund, encourage interested members and attenders to apply to the fund for scholarship aid to attend the Program.
- Email Alan Evans with any questions and to let him know that your Meeting will be participating in the Program this year.