Meg Bender-Stephanski, Eloheh Partnership Intern
Hello everyone! My name is Meg Bender-Stephanski (she/they) and I am a recent graduate from the University of Portland, where I received a B.A. in Environmental Ethics and Policy, with minors in Social Justice and Theology. I am incredibly passionate about environmental justice and disability justice. I am currently also working as an AmeriCorps member with the organization College Possible in Portland.
Kira Saito, Research Intern
Kira Saito is drawn to EcoFaith Recovery and its practices for awakening leadership because she believes that educating herself and others is the best way to build a community that is not just tolerant but accepting. As a Japanese-American, She is strongly committed to being anti-racist and promoting the anti-racist ideology for herself, her family, and other minority communities. She is drawn to advocacy for the climate and racial justice movements because of her passion for Oregon’s natural beauty and the anti-racist ideology.
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Sarah Holst, Practicum Coordinator
Sarah Holst is a bioregional theologian, artist, and Masters of Divinity student living in the Tischer Creek Watershed of Duluth, Minnesota. Sarah is on an ordination journey with the Roman Catholic Womenpriests: an international initiative within the Catholic Church to cultivate a new, gender-inclusive, expansive definition of priesthood. Sarah is among the youngest to be engaging a call with this movement. Sarah Holst is the fourth Intern Coordinator with EcoFaith Recovery, which is an advanced level internship with EcoFaith.
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Carolyn Brodt is a second career seminarian at Pacific Lutheran Theological Seminary in Berkeley in her third academic year. Prior to seminary, Carolyn had a long career as a non-profit executive, CEO of a dental managed care plan and worked in public and international health. One of her favorite verses is from the Old Testament, Micah 6:8, “what does the Lord require of us, to act justly, love mercy and walk humbly with God.” This verse is what motivates her to live-out my Christian faith in the world. Carolyn realized this past year that theologically, she is an Ecofeminist.
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Ariel Aaronson-Eves is an aspirant for Unitarian Universalist ministry and MDiv student at Starr King School for the Ministry. Prior to enrolling at Starr King she spent six years working in the fields as a farmer, experiencing everything from isolated cattle ranches to urban educational farms, growing everything from fish to flowers. As she worked the land with her body and connected with people through food and flowers, her spirituality and senses of self and community blossomed.
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Juli Patten is a fifty-five-year-old mother of five grown children, married to her best friend and greatest supporter, Michelle. Juli was a teacher for thirty-one years in the state of Hawaii. She is a life-long Lutheran and decided to follow her call to ministry. Juli is looking forward to using her calling to share her faith with others.
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K.M. Boucher attended Hamilton College and graduated in 2017 with a BA in Sociology and a heightened awareness of their need for spiritual grounding. They are working part-time for Geez magazine and preparing to move into Detroit’s Catholic Worker house. What most excites them right now is thinking about ways to support the 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.
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Allie Knofczynski, Communications Intern
Allie Knofczynski has taken on a unique internship to support EcoFaith Recovery through communications. Allie is currently studying at the Chaplaincy Institute in Berkeley. Her prior experiences lies in writing, activism, and yoga. They have written for social media, broadcast, and print publications, and also supported activist causes focused on mental health and global health education.
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Dave Pritchett, Intern Coordinator
My childhood was divided between growing up in the foothills of Mt. Kenya in East Africa as a missionary kid, and high school years spent in Little Rock, Arkansas. More recently, I came from Indiana with my partner, Lizz Schallert. Since our move in March of 2014, we have been glad to call Wilderness Way community our spiritual home as well as our deep kin here in Portland. Dave Pritchett is the third Intern Coordinator with EcoFaith Recovery. He is a former intern with EcoFaith Recovery.
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Minda internship was focused upon enhancing the role of the website and integrating blog and social media into the communications strategy of EcoFaith Recovery. We have Minda to thank for the creation of new pages and updating of content on our website this summer!
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As part of her certificate program in nonprofit management, Karen created a document for EcoFaith Recovery that could be used by future Core Team/Board Members to better understand EcoFaith Recovery history and development.
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Shelby grew up in the Pacific Northwest and spent many weekends being shaped by city life and the forests and mountains. She had been aware of issues of social and environmental injustice from an early age and wanted to pursue either social work or forest conservation. Shelby thought they were two separate worlds and that to devote herself to one meant she would neglect the other.
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Karin was born and raised in the Portland area. She's attended St. James Lutheran Church for her entire life and is now a member of the church council. Her connection with St. James and the people there is very important to her. Some of the most memorable and impactful experiences have been ones surrounding her mission trips.
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Barbara Willer practicum was part of her Masters of Divinity degree at Marylhurst University. Her focus was to integrate what she has learned about ecology, theology, and recovery from consumerism by participating on the leadership team for the Organizing in the Bio-Commons course and being a part of Core Team conversations through which the mission of EcoFaith Recovery is further developed and put into practice.
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Susanna (Turtle) Farahat
Turtle Internship was called: What Moves You? Exploring the how? of transitions into new relationships with money/exchange/wealth. She explored this topic through conversations with people who are living into another way of relating to money/exchange/wealth, and conversations with others who may have considered alternatives but who still find themselves primarily in mainstream relationships to money/exchange/wealth.
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Nathan internship prepared him to lead and carry out a 47 day long youth camp during 2013 which will include teaching, conversation, experiences of the biosphere (hikes, canoe/kayak outing, Cosmic Walk, etc.), and games.
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Nikki developed a workshop for teenage girls and young women focusing on how a recovery from consumerist addiction would lead to the rehabilitation of the female body and the Earth.
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Jason Wood and his wife Anna live in the Downtown Eastside of Vancouver, British Columbia, where they seek to practice radical hospitality as part of the Servants Vancouver community. Passionate about indigenous and climate justice, he organizes with Earthkeepers: Christians for Climate Justice and participates in Anglican-based Salal and Cedar, a watershed discipleship community. For his internship project, he is developing and running Red Clover Farm, a small urban farm re-connecting people to their food sources and to one another.
Chloe recently graduated West Linn High School in the class of 2016. She is interested in Biology and planning to major in Environmental Science at California Lutheran next fall. Chloe enjoys reading, hiking, and listening to music in her free time. She was elected president of the International club during senior year and was a participant of the school tennis team. Chloe has a strong passion for the arts and hopes to incorporate her interest in her future career. Her long-term goal is to encourage others to help protect the earth and promote worldwide change.
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Haylie Isaacson is currently a sophomore at Westview High School. When she grows up, she would like to be a preschool or elementary school teacher. Haylie enjoys writing, dancing and doing art projects. Coloring is her favorite but she also enjoys collages, making posters and stamping. Haylie would like to grow as a leader through this internship by working with a community and feeling more connected to God. She is interested in building more confidence when speaking in front of groups and practice finding my voice.
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Molly Hartshorn has resided in the Portland area since graduating with a Bachelors of Music from Western Washington University in 2015. She is now a member of St. Andrew Lutheran Church in Beaverton and will be beginning her seminary education with Pacific Lutheran Theological Seminary in the fall of 2016. As she prepares for a life in ministry, Molly hopes to develop her leadership and organizing skills and deepen her understanding of the realities of the climate crisis during her time with EcoFaith.
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Chase Isaacson is currently a senior at Westview High school. He enjoys filmmaking, video games, reading, and spending time with my friends and family. He's been given the chance to join EcoFaith: Returning to the Rhythms of God course through the use of filmmaking and is very excited to get started. Chase hopes the videos he creates can be shared for many people to show the importance of EcoFaith and what it is all about.
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Michelle currently attends Liberty High School as a Sophomore. She is interested in Psychology and hopes to study that throughout college at Pacific Lutheran University. Michelle enjoys listening to music, reading, and being outdoors in her free time. She is an active member in her schools Key Club and hopes to maybe run the club one day. She also loves going to Camp Lutherwood here in Oregon, and plans on being a camp counselor in the future.
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Elizabeth was drawn to the EcoFaith internship because of the specific focus of video and media production that was called for. But through conversation and consideration her project with aim to connect the EcoFaith Community as well as tell and weave it's story through this time of discernment and outlook of the future of the organization. **Elizabeth is currently working on a documentary film.**
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Kirra's internship involved working with the Beyond Fossil Fuels initiative. Her internship will consist of assisting BFF with short term and long term strategies, streamlining practices, and providing administrative support where needed.
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For his internship Matt explored the intersection of environmental justice, permaculture, theology, and social justice.
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Noah is someone who feels that consumerism is a culture created by humanity, and that we find ourselves caught in the currents of advertising and popularity. So for his internship Noah was looking at how to make sure we are conscious of our consumption and its effects on the environment.
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For her internship, Tess originally planned to develop the mission and vision for a cafe she wanted to open that would bring together her passions for food, community, justice, and working with the marginalized.
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Redbird engaged in a mini-Internship with EcoFaith Recovery to support his leadership development through a four-week intensive service-learning project on Eloheh Farm.
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Sara Gross Samuelson
Sara Gross Samuelson was the second Intern Coordinator with EcoFaith Recovery serving from January 2015 - Oct 2015.
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Bradley Charles Seibel
Bradley Charles Seibel is an undergraduate theology major at Marian University in Fond du Lac, Wisconsin. He never would have imagined that he would be pursuing ministry, but as with many others who have been called certain experiences in his life have brought him to the realization that social justice and the empowerment of all marginalized persons are his passions in life.
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Jacob Taylor is a student and lifelong resident of the Maketewah (Mill Creek) watershed in Southwestern Ohio. He received his bachelors in literary and cultural studies from the University of Cincinnati, and now lives in the city's urban ecovillage community where he spends his time farming, homesteading, and making music.
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My name is Sarah Kretschmann and I just finished my first year as a student at Luther Seminary where I am pursuing my Masters of Divinity and ordination through the South-Central Synod of Wisconsin. At the core of my call to ministry is a deep connection to the earth and wonder at the magnificence of the world we live in.
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Liz Fifield currently calls Duluth, MN and Lake Superior home but was born and raised in Southwest Michigan near Lake Michigan and has loved experiencing two dynamic great lakes and their varied communities. She is interested in using her sociology degree and interest in gathering stories and developing relationships with other people who choose to live near the Great Lakes.
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Adella Barrett is from the James River Watershed of central Virginia. She is pursuing a Master of Divinity through Chicago Theological Seminary. For her internship she is exploring the intersections of herbalism and christian sacrament...
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Rie Tanabe is from the North Santiam Watershed in Oregon where she recently graduated from Willamette University with a bachelors of arts in environmental and earth sciences. She currently lives in Salem, OR and is looking to pursue a master's degree in environmental management or urban planning.
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