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2014 Spirituality in the 21st Century Speakers Announced

Rooted in Compassion: Cosmology, Eco-Justice and Empathic Wisdom
March 28–29, 2014

Rooted in Compassion

Come and be energized by Marc Ian Barasch and Drew Dellinger as they inspire, challenge and accompany us in our spiritual journey to renew the face of the earth!

Marc Ian Barasch is the award-winning author of The Compassionate Life: Walking the Path of Kindness, a national bestseller that inspired the film I Am. He also founded the Green World Campaign on principles of “green compassion.”

Drew Dellinger, Ph.D., is a performance poet with literary acclaim across six continents, known for his love letter to the milky way. He studied with the late Thomas Berry and celebrates the writings of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

This is part of Prairiewoods’ Spirituality in the 21st Century series and will be held at the DoubleTree by Hilton in Cedar Rapids on Friday evening, March 28, and Saturday, March 29, 2014. For more information or to register, contact Prairiewoods at 319-395-6700.

Get in the Spirit of the Season at the Holiday Bazaar

Holiday Bazaar 2013The holiday season brings with it a sense of wonder, gratitude and generosity. Welcome the spirit of the season at Prairiewoods’ annual Holiday Bazaar on Saturday, Nov. 23. It will be a great opportunity to cross items off your holiday shopping list!

Our doors will open at 8 a.m. so that you can enjoy a wide selection of baked goods and gifts for family and friends. You will have until 1 p.m. to fill the Christmas stockings and the space under your tree.

Prairiewoods will offer special items from its Gift Shop and kitchen. Other vendors will offer an array of goods prepared by local artisans. You will have your choice of freshly baked breads and pies, Trappistine caramels, scarves, handcrafted aprons, jewelry, bags, baby blankets, mittens and much more. You also can enjoy a relaxing cup of coffee or cider, a homemade baked good or a made-rite at our Coffee Corner.

We hope you will join us for the official start of the season at the Holiday Bazaar!

Barasch and Dellinger Speaking at 2014 Spirituality in the 21st Century Conference

2014 PresentersPrairiewoods is pleased to announce that we will welcome Marc Ian Barasch and Drew Dellinger to the 2014 Spirituality in the 21st Century conference March 28–29, 2014. Marc and Drew will talk about compassion, eco-justice and hope for the world today.

Marc Ian Barasch is an award-winning writer, editor and producer. He is the founder of the Green World Campaign and author of The Compassionate Life: Walking the Path of Kindness (2009). Marc’s work on compassion inspired the documentary I Am by Tom Shadyac. (Learn more about Marc at

Drew Dellinger, Ph.D., is an evocative speaker, poet, writer and teacher who has inspired minds and hearts around the world, performing poetry and keynoting on justice, ecology, cosmology and compassion. He also is a consultant, publisher and founder of Planetize the Movement. (Learn more about Drew at

Welcome the Marginalized

“Every single person has capabilities, abilities and gifts. Living a good life depends on whether those capabilities can be used, abilities expressed and gifts given. If they are, the person will be valued, feel powerful and well-connected to the people around them. And the community around the person will be more powerful because of the contribution the person is making.”  —John P. Kretzmann and John L. McKnight

When we befriend those on the margins of society by practicing hospitality and welcome, we create communities where justice can be lived out. Through these relationships, we will develop the new knowledge, practices, courage and commitment that lead to broad-based change.

Circles currently forming (If you would like to join a circle, click the contact to send an email request.)
A Place of Grace, 
contact Joe Kruse
Catherine McAuley Center, contact Gregory White
Cedar Rapids Metro Economy Alliance, contact Quinn Pettifer
Des Moines Contingent, contact Denny Coon
Four Oaks, contact Jim Kirks
Gloria Dei Lutheran Church,
 contact Randy Kasch
House of Hope, contact House of Hope staff
Intervarsity Christian Fellowship, contact Christian Roth
Johnson County Social Services, contact LaTasha Massey
Metro Catholic Outreach, contact Christin Tomy and Barb Kane
Neighborhood Transportation Service, contact Mike Barnhart
Northwest Neighborhood Association, contact Linda Seger
People’s Church, contact Rev. Tom Capo
Progressive Theology, contact Joann Gehling, FSPA
Shelter House, contact Kafi Dixon
Shelter House, contact Crissy Canganelli
Sixth Judicial District Department of Correctional Services, contact Gary Hinzman
St. Cecelia’s Parish in Ames, contact Tom Primmer
System Thinkers, contact Ellen Bruckner
Third Avenue Churches, contact Heather Hayes
Unity Center, contact Jan Griffith
Wellington Heights Neighborhood, contact Sherrie Ilg

Safety & Security

“All we have to do to create the future
is to change the nature of our conversations
to go from blame to ownership,
and from bargaining to commitment,
and from problem solving to possibility.”
 —Peter Block

Studies show that there are two major determinants of our local safety. One is how many neighbors we know by name. The other is how often we are present and associated in public outside our homes. Connections among neighbors are critical. 

Circles currently forming (If you would like to join a circle, click the contact to send an email request.)
Cedar Rapids Metro Economic Alliance, contact Quinn Pettifer
Cedar Rapids Neighborhood, 
contact Carol Sindelar
Cedar Rapids Police Department, contact Chief Bryan Jerman
Family Promise of Linn County, contact Becky Knudson
Mound View Neighborhood Association, contact Clark Rieke
Knowing My Neighbors
Sixth Judicial District Department of Correction Services, contact Bruce Vander Sanden
SixthJudicial District Department of Correction Services, contact Melanie Steffens
SixthJudicial District Department of Correction Services, contact Julie Rochford
Sixth Judicial District Department of Correction Services, contact Kelly Schultz
Sixth Judicial District Department of Correction Services, contact Malinda Lamb
System Thinkers, contact Maridee Dugger
Jail Ministry Mentoring

Resilient Local Economy

“Determination, energy, and courage appear spontaneously when we care deeply about something. We take risks that are imaginable in any other context.”  —Margaret Wheatley

“The economy” is the sum total of transactions between people. And people’s lives and experiences are about much more than just dollars, profit and growth. As the conventional economy continues to crumble, we the people at the grassroots still need to keep a roof over our head, feed our children and maintain a relative degree of peace within our local community. In order to keep things going, we are going to have to use different economic tools than we have in the past: tools to facilitate transactions between people. A citizen economy gives form to the belief that the local exchange of goods and services supports a community’s competence.

A citizen economy is a mixture of a gift exchange and currency economy where people believe that much of what we need we can find locally, which keeps the currency local too. Develop practical life skills which will get you through challenges. Grow food. Now. Everywhere you can. Relocalize: shift to lifestyles that require far less transportation. Powerdown: decrease your energy dependence overall. Develop a supportive community circle around you to fall back on emotionally or more tangibly. Develop Inner Resilience—the character and spiritual base to remain flexible and feel good about it.

For more information on how to build a resilient local economy, visit or the Economic Resilience blog.

Circles currently forming (If you would like to join a circle, click the contact to send an email request.)
Axiom News: Engaging Strengths Catalyzing Change,
 contact Peter Pula
Business Policy and Strategy for Sustainable Development, University of Northern Iowa, contact Adele Santana
Center for Faith and Business, contact Anna Geyer
Center for Faith and Business, contact Lon Marshall
Cedar Rapids Area Convention and Visitors Bureau, contact Jennifer Pickar
Cedar Rapids Civil Rights Commission, contact Stefanie Munsterman-Robinson or Karl Cassell
GoDaddy, contact Amy Grotewold
Iowa Cultural Corridor, contact Jessica Johnson
Iowa Interfaith Power and Light, contact Rev. Susan Guy
Rockwell Collins, contact Melanie Richert
Source Media, contact Chuck Peters
St. Joseph the Worker Church in Dubuque, contact Constance LaBarbera
Van Meter Inc., contact Jennifer Bleil

Health & Well Being

“Circles create soothing space where even reticent people can realize that their voice is welcome.”  —Margaret Wheatley

We are responsible for each other. This is the meaning of community. We take seriously the idealistic notion that our future is dependent on each of us and if one of us is not free, or valued, or participating in a full life, then these are not possible for any of us. How long we live and how often we are sick are determined by our personal behaviors, our social relationships, our physical environment and our income. We are the people who can change these things, individually and with our neighbors.

Circles currently forming (If you would like to join a circle, click the contact to send an email request.)
Des Moines Contingent,
 contact Jean McCarthy
First Presbyterian Church, contact Ted Miller (faith communities reclaiming the language of transformation)
Gloria Dei Lutheran Church, contact Randy Kasch
Integration of Medical and Complimentary Methods, contact Katherine Krage
Lanston Strategy Group, contact Dave Langston (self image and performance)
Marion Cares Inc., contact Joe Polzen
Mount Mercy University, contact Deb Oliver
North Liberty Community, contact Judy McRoberts
Retirement Planning Association, contact Sylvia Brim (help singles out of isolation)
Shelter House, contact Kari Dixon or Crissy Canganelli (ability of all people to afford to live in the community in which they work)
Sixth Judicial District Department of Correction Services, contact Bruce Vander Sanden
Sixth Judicial District Department of Correction Services, contact Malinda Lamb
St. Anthony Hospital in Carroll, Iowa, contact Ed Smith
United Way of East Central Iowa, contact Leslie Wright
     Adverse Childhood Experiences (April 30, May 28, June 25, July 30, Aug. 27, Sept. 24, 5:30–6:30 p.m.)
Increasing Well-being of Our Children (April 30, 5:30–6:30 p.m.)
University of Iowa Nursing and VA Nursing, contact Theresa Keller, FSPA
Waypoint Services for Women, Children and Families, contact Angela Kron


“Whatever life we have experienced, if we can tell our story to someone who listens, we find it easier to deal with our circumstances.”  —Margaret Wheatley

Children become effective adults by being connected with community adults in their productive roles. The most effective local communities claim their youth and assume primary responsibility for their upbringing. “Where there are ‘thick’ community connections, both child development and school performance improve” (McKnight and Block, The Abundant Community).

Circles currently forming (If you would like to join a circle, click the contact to send an email request.)
Catherine McAuley Center, contact Gregory White
Catholic Charities, contact Stephen Schmitz
Cedar Falls/Waterloo Group, contact Don Walton
Cedar Rapids Metro Economic Alliance, contact Quinn Pettifer
Coe College, contact Kristin Hutson
Diversity Focus, contact Chad Simmons
Diversity Focus, contact Becky Lutgen Gardner
Grantwood AEA, contact Lisa Frey or Katy K. Lee
IowaTransformED, contact Trace Pickering
Kirkwood Community College, contact Al Rowe
Kirkwood Community College, contact Barbara Oakland
Kirkwood Community College, contact Steve Williams
Kirkwood Community College, contact Todd Prusha
University of Minnesota – Winona, contact Randy Schenkat
University of Northern Iowa, contact Dr. Jan Bartlett

Care for Earth

“Everyone in a complex system has a slightly different interpretation. The more interpretations we gather, the easier it becomes to gain a sense of the whole.”  —Margaret Wheatley

The environmental movement has taught us a great deal about how everyday lifestyles and behaviors can have an impact on the quality of life on our planet. The types of transportation we use, how we heat or cool our homes, the types of clothes we wear and the food we eat all affect our quality of life. As global citizens we need to adopt environmentally responsible behaviors in the ways we live. We must consider the materials and energy we use, the cleanliness of water and air, habitat and land, flora and fauna, place, construction, settlement, emission and waste.

As we become more conscious of how central food is to our health, it draws our attention to the importance of food security. If we want to know how our food is produced, how it is harvested and handled, and how far it travels, this is best done through local production. If we want to be educated about the effects of diet and keep our health in our own hands, this is within the capacity of our local community.

Our way of producing and relating to food integrates many of the elements that are key to satisfaction. Supporting local producers and markets does our part to solve the energy problem caused by transportation of food.

Circles currently forming (If you would like to join a circle, click the contact to send an email request.)
Cathedral of St. Paul (Episcopal),
 contact Cathleen Bascom
Grannies for a Livable Future, contact Barbara Schlachter
IA River Friends, contact Mel Schlachter
Indian Creek Nature Center, contact Jan Aiels
Indian Creek Nature Center, contact Jean Wiedenhelft
Living Water UMC, contact Lisa D. Schroeder
Matthew 25, contact Jerry Oakland
Metro Catholic Outreach, contact Christin Tomy or Barb Kane
Solstead, contact Tim McCoy
St. Thomas Aquinas Catholic Chuch, contact Linda Manatt
St. Timothy’s of Cedar Falls, contact Linda Butler
Trees Forever, contact Joann McNiel
Unity Center, contact Jan Griffith

Art and Creativity

“In these… times we don’t need more command and control; we need better means to engage everyone’s intelligence in solving challenges and crises as they arise.”  —Margaret Wheatley

Take time to learn the ways in which different cultures give expression to the human spirit—engagement and identity, performance and creativity, culture and art.

Circles currently forming (If you would like to join a circle, click the contact to send an email request.)
Cedar Rapids Neighborhood,
 contact Carol Sindelar
Indian Creek Nature Center, contact Jean Wiedenhelft
NewBo Books, contact Mary Ann Peters
Pieceworks: An Art and Healing Ministry, contact Kristi Christensen
St. Thomas Aquinas Catholic Church, contact Linda Manatt
Voicebox Poetry, contact Carl and Jan Christian Roth

F. John Herbert, executive director at C.S.P.S., invites any of the circles to meet at the Legion Arts Building. If your circle would like to meet there, please contact John.