Flashback Friday - Episode 80, The 2007 Planning Retreat
In October of 2007, a group of members of the community came together for a planning session to chart the course and define an action plan for Easton Mountain. The participants included board members, residents and other members of Easton Mountain’s extended community.
John Stasio started the circle by saying that Easton is about living a spiritual, holistic life that has many visions. He continued by saying that we are living love in action—a harsh and dreadful thing. “Community—it’s not for sissies”. He said that it is a difficult path we have embarked on and that we are on solid ground, though it is turbulent on the surface.
Several residents spoke about their experiences. One said it was "A place to do service and have joy." Another said that "abundant meaningful interactions encourage us to open up to deeper conversations." A third said "Life in community allows me to return to my real self, [and] enrich the lives and spirit of other gay men."
Part of the weekend was spent forming task groups that would work together on specific projects with special emphasis on short term goals and fundraising activities.
The group reached important agreements about working together much more closely, with all voices being heard. More importantly, this weekend allowed members of the community to redefine and strengthen their relationships with each other and their commitment to Easton Mountain and its mission.
We ended the weekend with a renewed confidence that Easton Mountain would continue to grow and touch the lives of many men as it had done in the past. We set ambitious goals but we were confident that we could achieve them with the commitment of our community - not just from the participants at this weekend’s event, but from all members of the extended community.
In addition to looking for volunteers to do the day-to-day work of running a retreat center, we also look for individuals with management experience in not-for-profit organizations. If you are such a person and are willing to volunteer your time to help with planning at Easton Mountain, give our executive director, Wil Fisher, a call at 518-692-8023 ex. 211.