Update on Retreat for Ministers to Artists
I am pleased to announced that the marvelously talented Brooke Waggoner will be joining us as our guest musician at the upcoming retreat for ministers to artists. Phaedra and I first heard of Brooke at Charlie Peacock's house. Charlie had recently produced her Go Easy Little Doves concert DVD and both he and Andi spoke highly of her, as artist, as a person, as a believer. He gave us a copy of her CD and we instantly fell in love with her work.
If I have my facts right, she closed out the 2008 SXSW festival and returned again in 2009. (Here's a nice interview with Relevant, fyi.) A Louisiana native, Brooke started playing piano at the age of 4, wrote original pieces at 10, and grew up immersed in the classical music world. After graduating Louisiana State University in 2006, Brooke moved to Nashville to pursue a music career, where she plays what I'd call, well, epic-folk-atmospheric-classically-informed-energetically-soulful-poignant music.
So that, in short, completes a provisional trifecta for our retreat: Frederica Mathewes-Green, Brooke Waggoner and myself. Plus a whole bunch of really amazing folks that I know are already coming. (See here for my note about the lovely Frederica.) And I have a few other possible treats of my sleeve (or at least they're up the redoubtable Steven Purcell's sleeve).
See preview of Brooke's music below.
WHO SHOULD COME?
Very simply: folks who feel any kind of call to shepherd artists. If you love caring for artists, this retreat is for you. If you find yourself lying awake in the middle of the night conceiving of residency programs that contribute to the spiritual and artistic formation of artists, the retreat's for you. If you think discipleship of artists is a holistic business, you'll have come to the right retreat. If you mentor fledgling artists, come. If you seek alternative models for fostering the calling of artists, you should consider coming.
You may work in the context of the church, officially or unofficially, or in a para-church setting or in an educational institution or in a professional society. Or you may be a floater who feels called to be in the lives of artists whenever, however and wherever the Spirit leads. This retreat is for you.
You may have decades of experience or you may just be starting out in this work. This retreat is for you.
WHERE WILL THE RETREAT BE?
It'll take place again at the beautiful Laity Lodge in the hill country of central Texas. Here is the info about the retreat this past spring on Laity Lodge's website. Registration is officially open.
WHAT WAS IT LIKE THE PAST TWO YEARS?
See here for a brief description of year one. See here an advanced note about this past spring. Here is one participant's report of the recent retreat.
Here, finally, is a good word from somebody who attended both retreats. His name is Jeffrey Guy and he helps lead an arts ministry at Trinity Anglican Church in Atlanta, Georgia. He's also quite the visual artist.
"Entering the retreats with skeptical expectations, I met authentic Christians who shared my passions relating to the arts. I witnessed also how the Holy Spirit is at work in His body, the Church, and discovered art's importance in God's economy. All of the lectures by accomplished artisans and pastors (and I've been twice now) were meaningful.
However it was the retreaters encountered at Laity that by far resonated, inspired and instructed me by way of their collected experience. Whether we were trekking through the canyon, enjoying a delicious meal or putting our hands together for some creative time, it far surpassed my expectations and laid my skepticism to rest. These retreats were where I found my 'tribe' ."