The Elderberry Connection
The Elderberry Connection is a Christian Spirituality group that celebrates the unfolding story of the universe.
The Elderberry Connection provides opportunities to reflect on sacred relationships in creation and fosters a planetary spirituality to inspire and support action for ecological and social justice.
Our name refers both to Thomas Berry, our inspiration, and to the elderberry tree or shrub, so rich in life giving properties and in creation mythology.
The Elderberry Connection began in 2004 with a week-long retreat at Kelly’s Homestead in PEI under the guidance of our facilitator, Sr. Jean Ann Ledwell , OSU. We felt that our culture needed a boost of cosmic energy, inspiration and deep paradigm shift to live healthily in the 21st Century. We realised that building communities of people open to the Cosmic Story (the scientific story of the Universe) would take time, organisation, and resources to make this new group come alive and bear fruit. We therefore decided to have annual retreats in different venues to gather interested people to experience this New Story in all its dimensions. In addition to our initial retreat, we have organised the following events:
- Tools for Transformation: Creativity, Spirituality and Social Change with Jan Phillips in April 2015 at Loyola Retreat Centre in Gueph, Ontario
- An Unbroken Intimacy with Life with Anne Hillman in April 2013 at Loyola Retreat House in Guelph, Ontario.
- Walking the Path of Aboriginal Wisdom with Priscilla Solomon CSJ in April 2012 at Loyola Retreat House in Guelph, Ontario.
- Walking the Way of Blessing An Ecospirituality of Earth Healingwith Mark Hathaway in April 2011 at at Loyola Retreat House in Guelph , Ontario.
- Changing the World from Inside Out with Gail Worcelo, CP in April 2010 at Loyola Retreat House in Guelph , Ontario.
- Re-Imaging the Common Good: Creation Liberation, and the Promise of Hope in an Ecological Age with Stephen Bede Schaper in April 2009 at Scarboro Missions, Scarborough, Ontario.
- The Changing Nature of Contemporary Spirituality : Signs of hope from an Ecological Perspective with Fr. Diarmuid O’Murchu (London, England) in April 2008 at Loyola Retreat House in Guelph , Ontario (80 participants).
- Spiritual Homecoming to the Land: Liberate our Passion for Earth Action with Jim Profit , SJ (Director of the Ignatius Jesuit Centre, Guelph, ON) and Sr. Maureen Wild, SC (BC) held in April 2007 at Loyola Retreat House in Guelph , Ontario (50 participants).
- Living an Engaged Cosmology: From Cosmic Awe to Global Transformation with Jim Conlon and Marianne Karsh (Ignatius Jesuit Centre, Guelph, ON) held in April 2006 at Cedar Glen, Bolton, Ontario (35 participants).
- Celebrating Engaged Cosmology and Geo-Justice with Jim Conlon director of the Sophia Center (Oakland, CA) held in April 2005 at the Holy Family Retreat House in Oxley , Ontario (55 participants).
Our planning committee currently consists of the following people:
- Janet Speth (Event Registrar)
- John Devan
- Lorna Devan
- Gayl Hutchison
- Jane Voll
- Daisy Radigan