I was raised in Rochester, NY at the intersection of many communities, including a large extended family, a radical Catholic church, and many folks working for justice. I attended Hamilton College and graduated in 2017 with a BA in Sociology and a heightened awareness of my need for spiritual grounding and connection. After spending a year in Boston with the Quaker Voluntary Service program, I followed a call of community and moved to Detroit in the fall of 2018. I have been continually transformed by the radical organizing, faith, and resilience that lives and grows in Detroit. These days, I am working part-time for Geez magazine and preparing to move into Detroit’s Catholic Worker house. In my free time, you can usually find me road-tripping, journaling, or finding somewhere to go out dancing.
Ever since hearing about the EcoFaith program, I’ve been interested in being a part of it — and this moment in my life finally feels like the right time to dive in. I am coming off a season of solitude and contemplation, which very often took on forms of grief work for this aching world and its peoples. I am feeling ready, now, to channel some of that energy outward, and I think the EcoFaith Practicum would help provide me with the tools, networks, and accountability to do so. I am also in a time of recent reconnection with streams of Christianity, and I hope that the program will help me connect with others who are rooted in this messy tradition and asking similar questions about how to live it out.
I will be completing the Recovery Practicum as I transition to living in Detroit’s Catholic Worker house (Day House). I hope that the Practicum would help me stay both accountable and grounded through this transition — accountable to the wider community I am apart of in Detroit, and grounded in my values and life-giving practices. In this transition, I would specifically like to practice leadership through listening and connection-building, as I am moving into a new neighborhood in a city that I am still relatively new to. I imagine that “moving at the speed of trust” in relationship-building (a la adrienne maree brown) will help forge stronger community for the long haul.
Current Engagement with The Practices
I’ve engaged with each of these practices throughout my life to varying degrees. The ones that are feeling most present in my life already are developing relationships, discovering our stories, and reflecting on our actions. These three practices were especially cultivated through my year of Quaker Voluntary Service last year, especially in my life in intentional community. Since finishing that program almost a year ago, I’ve also delved into a period of deeper solitude, and in that time I’ve focused more on contemplation and accessing my spiritual power.
What most excites me right now is thinking about ways to support the on-the-ground Environmental Justice work that is already happening in Detroit — and specifically following the lead of elders of color who have been in this work for decades. This might look like offering Day House as a physical resource for organizations, leveraging our privileged identities for canvassing/door-knocking in the suburbs, and/or raising financial resources to support Detroit Environmental Justice activists.