I grew up in Mobile, Alabama, active in a Presbyterian church. After college, I met Quakers through environmental activism work in Cincinnati. When I moved to Minneapolis, Minnesota twenty-five years ago and began to recognize my need for a spiritual community, I started attending and eventually joined Minneapolis Friends Meeting.
In this time, I worked as vice president of marketing for a large corporation, and then for Public Radio International. Seeing friends who are teachers and clergy take sabbaticals, I was inspired to start a fund to do the same. After many years of work, taking a sabbatical as a resident student at Pendle Hill provided the time, space, and community I needed to reevaluate how I was called to be of service.
Part of my plan in coming to Pendle Hill was to learn more about Quakerism and the Bible and share my learning with my home meeting and the larger Religious Society of Friends. As I pursued these studies, I found I have a gift for and calling to what Quakers call “eldering,” to help find and support others’ gifts and leadings.
Living, working, worshipping, and studying in this spiritual community of people from a diversity of backgrounds, identities, and spiritual paths has been significant in my spiritual exploration and growth. I feel I have been doing and experiencing God’s work in so many ways here: through classes; deep, meaningful conversations with other residents and visitors; housework; daily meeting for worship; and confronting challenging concerns about racism as a community. Through these experiences, I have gained a deeper sense of my own spirituality and calling, and what it truly means to be a friend, and a Friend, living each day in God’s presence.
At the end of my final term, four weeks before I was planning to leave Pendle Hill, a development position opened here; I applied and was offered the job. As I’ve learned throughout the year, when you open yourself to transformation you should expect change! This is a wonderful opportunity for me to use my skills and my passion to be of service to Pendle Hill and, thereby, to the greater Religious Society of Friends. My new husband and I moved to Pendle Hill where I began my new work in September.