In March and April, parishioner Tracy Hurley, a member of the Care of Creation ministry, facilitated a short course for the parish on “Voluntary Simplicity” using a text from Northwest Earth Institute.  These session allow parishioners to addresses the distractions of modern society that keep us all from caring for ourselves, our relationships, and our environment.  Many participants came to this topic wanting to simplfy their lives materially and spiritually, especially during this penitential season of Lent.    

As the course finished, the participants formed a Google group to continue to share information and resources, and even possibly to plan trips or other events, so that they can continue to support and encourage each other in this quest to living more simply.  Participant Bonnie Wolf noted that finding like-minded individuals who want to live with less was one of the best of aspects of this course.  Another participant Diane Steinbeiser sees herself (and her family) committing to paying more attention to where her food comes from and is looking at joining a food cooperative for fresh, locally-grown produce.  Participant Janice (Ryan) Marchok also wrote a column “Why are We Obsessed With Stuff” for the North Raleigh News about her experience in this course.  You can read it here

For future short courses on Voluntary Simplicity or other peace and justice topics, contact Kathleen Owen in the Franciscan Coalition for Justice and Peace, 847-8205 or

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