Continuing Revolution 2020 Online:
Transformative Conflict and Justice
An annual conference for young adults, ages 18-35
June 5-9, 2020
Do you find yourself eager to confront wrongdoing or mistakes? Have you ever avoided a conflict and then regretted it? Are you troubled by cycles of harm and punishment taking place in communities and society at large? Are you curious about how Spirit might move in interpersonal, group, or societal conflicts? Are you interested in how conflict at the individual, group, and societal level interacts with systems of power?
…then Continuing Revolution 2020 Online might be for you!
Why Online? Continuing Revolution 2020 has been moved online out of care for the health and safety of participants, presenters, and staff amidst the COVID-19 pandemic. We continue to find it valuable to hold space for young adults to connect together, and we think exploring themes of conflict are all the more important in this time! See below for the updated schedule and participation options.
The registration deadline was June 1. It’s possible that new participants (especially those attending part-time later in the conference) could be accommodated. Email firstname.lastname@example.org if you would like to attend, to explore that possibility.
Conference Fees and Financial Aid
Full conference: $40
Daily attendance: $12.
Financial assistance is available for Continuing Revolution. As the registration deadline has passed, Email email@example.com to explore attending with financial aid.
More on the Theme
While conflict is a transformative part of life, it can also provide opportunities for patterns of hurt, oppression, and violence to play out. It’s an area in which we can grow individually, together as a community, and as a society. Quakers have a particular relationship to conflict, often informed by the Peace Testimony, which has been a powerful guide for Friends since the founding of the faith. The Peace Testimony has also had a distinct impact on Quaker culture, with some interpretations of it encouraging an anger-averse culture of conflict-avoidance among individuals and communities, which itself can allow the patterns of white supremacy, sexism, or abuse to continue.
With these many influences, it is important to look at and practice conflict in a different way. This program embraces a vision of just peace, where harms are uprooted, and taken on despite what cultural norms of niceness might pervade. We will draw from the work of the prison abolition movement to explore community accountability around harm. Participants will:
- Learn about common dynamics in conflicts and how accountability and transformation can be possible interpersonally, in groups, and societally;
- Learn about power dynamics in conflicts, particularly in societal frames around punishment and policing;
- Explore prison abolition and other models of transformative justice; and
- Explore how to build communities of accountability in conflicts, particularly when someone with less privilege or access to power is harmed by someone with more.
Yahya Alazrak (they/them) comes to Social Justice work out of a deep sense of love for their family and community and a need for our collective liberation to be possible. Keenly interesting to them is how we build meaningful equity alongside agency; they feel like relationships across difference are a key part of making that happen. Philadelphia, unceded Lenni Lenape territory, is where they live and love. They are very involved in their cooperative housing community, the Life Center Association (LCA), and sit on the board of Philly’s social justice foundation, Bread and Roses Community Fund. For paid work, they serve as Resource Generation’s national Campaign Director. When they close their computer, they can be found cooking for friends, being overly-confident at board games, or lost in thought in their car before getting out at their destination.
Lina Blount is an organizer, trainer, and nonviolent action strategist and has been working on environmental justice campaigns in the Philadelphia area for ten years. Lina currently works as the Education Coordinator for Pendle Hill and is the co-clerk of the Earth Quaker Action Team board, which she has served since 2013. Lina has also worked with the Divestment Student Network and spent two years as canvasser and anti-fracking organizer in Pennsylvania.
Yuni Chang (she/they) is the Field Organizer with War Resisters League, a 96-year old national anti-militarist organization. In her past year at WRL, she’s built curriculum and trainings around airwars, bottom-lined the creation of a counter-recruitment resource targeting Border Patrol, co-organized actions as part of a successful campaign to oust the CEO of Safariland from the board of the Whitney Museum, and has worked on the front loading team of Dissenters, a new national organization focused on organizing college students for divestment campaigns against endless wars. They are also a member of Nodutdol, a NYC-based collective of anti-militarist Koreans advocating for the reunification and decolonization of the Korean peninsula. Prior to WRL, as a fellow at CAAAV: Organizing Asian Communities in New York City, she helped organize Korean tenants in Queensbridge and Ravenswood Houses for a campaign to win comprehensive language access for non-English speaking tenants in public housing. She is an aspiring librarian and a student of Black studies and ethnic studies for life.
Tenaja Henson or Ten uses they/them and she/her pronouns. Ten is currently living in North Carolina after finishing their undergraduate degree with a major in Community and Justice Studies and a minor in Religious Studies from Guilford College. During their time at Guilford, Ten focused on facilitating, organizing, and community research as ways to tackle oppressive systems. Throughout life they have been passionate about resistance, liberation theology, healing justice, astrology, magic, and farming. Ten loves to connect with people, help others feel heard, and discuss topics of justice, healing, and change with others. During their time at Guilford, Ten struggled to find community in the Quaker spaces available to them that supported their passions for justice. They spent a lot of time finding new ways to do spirit-led social justice work, and are excited to continue to do so in the future. They believe interdependence, community healing, and storytelling are key players in understanding oppressive systems and finding provocative solutions. Ten is planning to go to divinity school in the next year to further their education and combining their passions for spiritual learning and justice.
Kody Hersh (he/him or they/them) is a Quaker youth worker, writer, musician, and LGBTQ advocate living on Timucua, Seminole, and Miccosukee land (central Florida). They are a trained member of Christian Peacemaker Teams, serve Southeastern Yearly Meeting as Youth and Young Adult Coordinator, and are passionate about the relationship between spirituality and transformative action.
Vanessa Julye is a graduate of Westtown School and obtained a BA from Temple University. She serves as a guest speaker for many Friends meetings, schools, organizations and Quaker conferences. Currently she is working on increasing awareness of White Supremacy in the Quaker and sectarian communities. Vanessa has a calling to a ministry with a concern for helping the Religious Society of Friends become a whole blessed community. She travels throughout the country and abroad speaking on this topic and leading workshops about racism, focusing on its eradication and the healing of White Supremacy’s wounds. She also meets with Quakers of Color throughout the world, many of whom are isolated members of their Quaker meetings in Canada and the United States. Vanessa and Donna McDaniel are the authors of Fit for Freedom, Not for Friendship: Quakers, African Americans and the Myth of Racial Justice, which focuses on the relationship between African American Friends and non-Friends with Quakers of European descent from the 17th through 21st Centuries. Vanessa has published numerous articles and pamphlets on Quakers and racism, including The Seed Cracked Open: Growing Beyond Racism. She serves Friends General Conference as the Coordinator for the Committee for Nurturing Ministries focusing on the Racism and Youth Ministries Programs. Vanessa is a member of Central Philadelphia Monthly Meeting. She is married, has three adult children, a son-in-law and one grandchild. Vanessa enjoys crafting, knitting, sewing, and photography.
Celia Kutz has been training and facilitating in the movement for social change for 15+ years. Her primary home during this time has been Training for Change, as Core Trainer and Co-Director. Her background in organizing and training is diverse. For eight years she lived in Minnesota, working with neighborhood folks fighting for self-determination and as the coordinator of a national network of healers to support mass protest during the 2008 RNC. Nationally, she has led direct action trainings to stop the Keystone XL Pipeline, convened Jews working to end the occupation of Palestine prior to the 2010 US Social Form, and supported leaders from a wide range of groups. Celia works 1-1 with activists in their context and supports whole organizations to move through a process. Her approach blends her study of somatics, strategy, spirituality, and nature alongside an early interest in dissonance and tension in groups. This led her to quickly dive into the study and practice of World Work, a project held by Process Work Psychology, in which conflict is facilitated in groups of 100+ from across the world. Celia is a trained mediator and restorative justice practitioner who loves training trainers and facilitating hot spots in group conflict.
Hannah Mayer (she/her/hers) has spent much of her adult and near-adult life thus far building Quaker community among youth and young adults in her personal and professional life. She currently serves Pendle Hill as Executive Assistant and Continuing Revolution Co-Coordinator, where she typically enjoys planning and facilitating staff retreats, and sharing reflections over lunch with her colleagues. Recent previous roles include teaching Physical Education at Lansdowne Friends School, Serving Philadelphia Yearly Meeting as the Young Friends Program Coordinator (with shorter stints as the Middle School Friends Co-Coordinator and as the Young Adult Friends Program Coordinator), and working as a counselor at various Quaker camps. Hannah has lived in West Philadelphia for over 10 years, and she and her husband are eagerly awaiting the addition of a child to their family later this summer. During the pandemic she has been buoyed by experiments in gardening, walks, her husband’s cooking, phone time with dear ones near and far, and checking items off to-do lists.
.O models and teaches the transformative power of Love. Under the care of Central Philadelphia Monthly Meeting, .O’s ministry, “Love and Respect Transform,” involves climate justice work with Philly Thrive and co-facilitating Alternatives to Violence Project trainings, among other things. A dynamic group facilitator with years of experience in body wisdom, stress reduction, and the healing powers of love, .O has worked with such organizations as Women for Sobriety, Women Within, and Interim House (a drug and alcohol treatment center).
Zenaida Peterson, author of Breakfast for Dinner and Other Blasphemous Things, published by Pizza Pi Press, is a mystic, an organizer, a house plant gardener, and a Black non-binary poet from the south currently doing restorative justice organizing in Boston, Massachusetts. They are the founding director of Feminine Empowerment Movement Slam (FEMS), an all ages radical poetry slam centering marginalized people and celebrating the feminine. They are prepping for the apocalypse by learning to make plant medicine, engaging in restorative justice, and farming. They are a current fellow of the Nurturing Faithfulness Program and a Boston alum of Quaker Voluntary Service, where they currently do recruitment and equity work. Their current project is spending each month of 2020 conquering a different fear of theirs.
Tory Smith (they/them) is a Quaker organizer and researcher raised in the DC area. A student activist during the lead-up to the Iraq and Afghan wars, Tory was a part of the student anti-war movement from 2003 on. Tory was also a part of the National Students for Justice in Palestine Steering Committee, and continues to organize and support for a liberated Palestine from their position in the U.S. Currently, Tory works as the National Campaigner with War Resisters League, working on confronting state violence and militarism across the globe. Tory lives and organizes within West Philadelphia and occasionally cooks far too much food in keeping with their Italian roots. They will always skip meeting for business in favor of meeting for worship.
Keithlee Spangler (they/them) grew up in St. Louis, Missouri but has found their home in a slanted, colorful, big old farmhouse just outside DC with queer chosen family. Keithlee is a founding organizer of the DMV De-escalation Collective which trains people in de-escalation strategies to interrupt state and street violence. They are also an organizer with Copwatch DC and the DC Mutual Aid Network. Keithlee loves all things facilitation, but especially the elements of caretaking and disability justice. They like to doodle on post-its, can develop a strong opinion about anything if given thirty seconds, find joy in fermenting vegetables, love listening to podcasts about spirituality, and can usually be found romping around in the woods with their dog, Yuba.
For questions about Continuing Revolution Online, contact the Co-Coordinators: Lina Blount (firstname.lastname@example.org) and Hannah Mayer (email@example.com).
Download the Continuing Revolution Flyer.