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|Joy and I feel like we need a gathering this year.|
It has been a difficult time for all of us due to sickness, loss, fear, loneliness, and isolation. What better reason could we have for wanting to bring women together for encouragement and connection?!
|We are putting on a super simplified version of Deeply Rooted. One night. One poet. One speaker. One group of women longing for encouragement with a side of joy. We’d love for you to come (if you are vaccinated, for the health and safety of our staff and attendees).|
If you can’t come we would love for you to pray for us!
Students are free!!
Scholarships are available.
Hoping to see you soon!
P.S. There is a chance Deeply Rooted will be livestreamed. We’ll keep you updated!
|*In-person attendees must bring proof of vaccination.|
|935 W. Wilson Ave.|
Chicago, IL 60640
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Spring is teasing us a bit here in Chicago. Temperatures rising only to plummet 30 degrees the next day. Rain storms with no sprouts popping out of the dirt. I’m inside right now wearing my writer’s gloves because my hands are freezing. And the heat is on!
If you’re feeling a little low and longing for a new season, we’re giving you something to look forward to.
Join us on Saturday, May 18th at 7:00 for worship. spoken-word poetry, an awesome speaker, and DESSERT!
We are excited to introduce you to Aubrey Sampson, author of Overcomer: Breaking Down the Walls of Shame and Rebuilding Your Soul and The Louder Song: Listening for Hope in the Midst of Lament.
Aubrey serves on the preaching team and as the director of equipping/discipleship at Renewal Church. She lives and ministers in the Chicagoland area with her husband Kevin. She is also a mom to three young sons, which is to say she spends most days in her pajamas, drinking entirely too much coffee.
She’ll be speaking on our theme Promise.
The LORD is a refuge for the oppressed, a stronghold in times of trouble.Those who know your name trust in you, for you, LORD,have never forsaken those who seek you.Psalm 9:9-10.
Mark your calendars and save the date! We can’t wait to see you!!
Here’s a flashback to November:
Top row: Songine Clark, Sherin Ahmed Ali, Kimberly Majeski
Middle row: Tracey Bianchi, Diana Shiflett
Bottom row: Pocket Prayers workshop, Tiana Clark, Bible Journaling workshop
To be honest, we’ve had a lot of obstacles and hurdles this time around. There’s been spiritual warfare, disappointment, and discouragement as we pull this gathering together.
But each time we feel like we’re going under, God pulls a fast one on us and confirms that we are supposed to be doing this, even if, especially if, it’s hard. We have an enemy who does not want women to connect, learn, be challenged, or encouraged. He wants us isolated and defeated. We’re not giving up.
Our lineup is spectacular and the workshops we’re offering are going to be amazing. We’re praying that God will bring the women who need to be here with us. We’re praying for the speakers to bring the Word boldly, and for the workshop leaders to lead us into conversation and creativity. We’re praying for worship to bring us deep into His presence.
We want you there. This is your invitation. Join us even if it’s only for one night or a few hours on Saturday. Don’t let the cost prohibit you from coming. We have a Pay-What-You-Can option and scholarships. Email us if you would like to apply for a scholarship.
See our full schedule here.
*We have different payment options as well as an opportunity to sponsor someone through a scholarship.
If finances are tight, we have a pay-what-you-can option.
You can also register at the door with cash or card.*
It is in the course of our feeble and very imperfect waiting that God Himself, by His hidden power, strengthens us and works out in us the patience of the great saints, the patience of Christ Himself. ~Andrew Murray
We saw women’s conferences popping up from coast to coast and while it encouraged us, there were a few similarities that we found off-putting.
Number one was the cost. In order to attend some of these conferences, you’d have to take a day or two off work for travel, pay a hefty registration fee, and book a pricy hotel room.
Number two was the blatant lack of diversity. The speaker lineups were by and large, overwhelmingly white. We wanted to build a conference with a fair balance of women of color.
Number three was the (unintentional) focus on appearance. The advertising and the after shots all seemed staged. They came off intimidating to the average woman who isn’t going to buy four new outfits with the help of a stylist. They didn’t represent reality in a way we thought they should. We stress total casualness. Come just as you are. Wear your pajamas if you want to.
We want you to feel like you’re in a friend’s living room. Kick off your shoes. Wear your comfiest oversized men’s sweatshirt if you want. We just want you there.
We have a pay-what-you-can option and scholarships! We also have overnight housing. We are offering a catered lunch with speakers and the core team for $12. Deadline to register for that is this Tuesday, November 7th. You can register for the event and workshops online, or pay at the door. The art workshops require a $10 supply fee payable online at registration.
Joy and I (Tammy) are in full swing prepping for our next Gathering on November 10th and 11th. We’ve opened registration and can’t wait to see who is joining us!! Here are a few things you need to know:
If you have further questions, please fill out this form:
Katelyn Durst is a community artist, creative activist, teacher and youth worker. She has worked within urban youth development and urban community development for ten years and has taught poetry for six years, recently conducting poetry therapy workshops at a youth psychiatric hospital and Freedom Schools summer programming in a workshop focused on healing from the unjust deaths of youth of color. Katelyn is currently pursuing a master’s in Urban Studies and Community Arts from Eastern University with a focus on trauma-informed art-making to build sustainable and transformative resiliency within urban/inner-city and displaced communities. In her spare time, she dreams of becoming an urban beekeeper. She is a poet-in-residence at The Mudroom.
Nilwona Nowlin is a redemptive artist, someone who believes in the power of the arts to bring about positive transformation in individuals and communities. She is particularly passionate about helping people discover/pursue their purpose, leadership development, and ministries of compassion, mercy, and justice such as community development, reconciliation, and intercultural development. She is a regular contributor for the Evangelical Covenant Church (ECC) Commission on Biblical Gender Equality’s blog and the lmdj Voices blog of the ECC’s Love Mercy Do Justice mission priority. Nilwona earned a B.A. from Columbia College Chicago, an M.A. in Christian Formation and Certificate in Justice Ministry from North Park Theological Seminary and a Master’s in Nonprofit Administration from North Park University. She blogs at thedreamerspeaks.com.
Lina AbuJamra is a Pediatric ER doctor and founder of Living with Power Ministries. Her deepest desire is to help people live with power by connecting Biblical answers to everyday life. Though Lina still practices medicine, she spends the majority of her time speaking and writing providing Biblical truth for every day life. She has authored Thrive: the Single Life as God Intended, Stripped: When God’s Call Turns from Yes to Why Me?, and Resolved: 10 Ways to Stand Strong and Live What You Believe.
You can hear Lina daily on Moody Radio hosting Today’s Single Christian, or listen to her popular Living with Power podcast reaching thousands of people globally. Lina’s most recent work has taken her back to the Middle East and her birth country, Lebanon, where she is provides medical care for Syrian refugees. Born in Beirut, Lebanon, Lina now calls Chicago home. She is single and a huge Packers fan – not that the two are connected. Lina loves her coffee black and her iPhone always.
2016 was a brutal year for the country and the whole world. There was so much death, destruction, and hatred that many of us struggled to wake to a sense of purpose in the mornings. Our nation is grieving the loss of a historically invaluable leader, and fearing for the future of our most vulnerable citizens and refuges. We are tired. We are struggling with disbelief. We are fighting for the tiniest sliver of light we can find.
We chose our Spring theme in December and it resonated deeply within us and knew it would with you as well. What we need most right now is hope—hope for the hurting, hope for justice, hope for peace, hope for that promised hour when Jesus returns triumphant to defeat death for good.
We are called to be purveyors of hope, bringers of Good News, liberators of the poor and oppressed. When our hope is ebbing, we need to put ourselves in the way of it. Maybe we should be reading good news after each article that discourages, reaching out to those we know have been hit the hardest by hopelessness.
We’ll be gathering on May 20, 2017 to feed off one another’s hope, to be strengthened and built up by our sisters, to bring light to each other’s darkness. Please join us. Invite your family and friends. Let’s kick hate and fear to the curb together.
Deeply Rooted is a gathering of women striving to break chains of oppression and lift each other up in the name of the Lord. The speakers are of excellent caliber, powerful in their messages and compassionate in their hearts. I was moved by the telling of their stories as women who have experienced social injustice and see where problems of power lie.
The speakers and worship team do not seem to just sit around hoping things change; they have spent their lives working for a difference both in themselves and their world around them. I had an encounter with Jesus that night as I worshipped, and felt the Holy spirit say: Listen and then act.
The Scriptures say to always encourage one another and this is what Deeply Rooted did for me. The evening encouraged me to stand firm in what I believe. I’m looking forward to the next Deeply Rooted in November.
Diane Buell lived at Jesus People USA from 1994-1995. She comes back every spring and fall for Deeply Rooted—and is always given a warm welcome by her old friends.
“Experiencing a taste of heaven” is how I would describe the Deeply Rooted gathering on May 21. Truthfully, there were a host of reasons that could have kept me away. The month of May filled up with plenty of obligations. Thankfully, my husband encouraged me to make room for it. I even invited a friend! Forgetting to care for our own soul becomes tempting as we get in the habit of caring for others. Yet, we must be cautious that we don’t become parched and undernourished. We must find ways of keeping our roots sustained. The Deeply Rooted gathering did just that.
People worship our Creator in a variety of ways. The blessing that came through this gathering was the variety of worship forms through which the voice of God spoke. The songs, though familiar, took on a different perspective in this venue. Despite our differences and our church backgrounds, we were singing common music. The instruments may have been different (which I love) but the language was understood by all.
Intermingled with worship through music were speakers Rev. Dr. Velda Love, June Felix, and a poet Elyssa Salinas. We are all blessed when the Holy Spirit uses our unique gifts and talents to be manifest. I felt the characters come to life as she became their voices. In particular, I was impacted by the narrative of Hagar. So often the story is told of Abraham and Hagar takes a minor; if not scandalous part. Here, Hagar spoke of what was forced upon her. An act, which truthfully, is criminal by our standards. The pain, the humiliation, and despair she felt as she was cast away from the family that no longer had “need” of her was deep. Yet, in the midst of it, she is reminded that she is not invisible; she is not a label. She is known by and loved by her Creator.
June challenged the listeners to embrace the wonder of God. She drew us in by sharing a bit of her personal story involving her mother who had recently passed. She was left with unanswered questions regarding her mother’s life. Not having answers can leave us unsettled yet we’re reminded throughout scripture of the mysteries of God. For example, as she pointed out, many people know John 3:16 by heart; however, John 3:7-8 is not a popular memorized passage. June stated that “trusting God requires learning how to be comfortable with the ‘unknown knowns.’” “Unknown knowns” are the promises of God as revealed through scripture and a personal relationship. I appreciated her reminder that God gives just what we need for the moment. So often, I think of the “what ifs” down the road but forget that God’s already holding onto that for me. In a humorous illustration, our life hidden in Christ was compared to a “Turducken.” The closing challenge confronted our own legacy. By embracing the “unknown knowns,” others may look at our life and wonder “Who is this Jesus?”
Rev. Dr. Velda Love’s presentation exhorted women to reclaim their true identities. She began by referencing the choreopoem “For Colored Girls Who Have Considered Suicide When the Rainbow is Enuf.” Written by Ntozake Shange, the poem (and play) “is concerned with the victimization of women and with finding the young black woman’s voice and self.” The characters’ narratives bring a voice to both the individual and collective suffering at the hands of those in power. By expressing verbally and orally the violence against them as black women, they fight to break up a system that has perpetuated the oppression. Rev. Dr. Love asked us to consider what our own play would be called. Furthermore, the challenge lies in asking ourselves questions such as, “Who writes your story?” “Who has power over your existence?” “Who is mending your soul?” Such significant questions, but how often do we ask them? The answers have implications concerning how we view faith, our understanding of scripture, how we view God, and our relationship to others.
As we examined key passages, Rev. Dr. Love deconstructed common interpretations and provided historical and literal background. So much of what we come to understand biblically has its roots in source materials written in patriarchal societies. All miss out on the full implications of scripture when it is viewed through a lens that is skewed. Acknowledgement of that truth is necessary to embracing our identity as God’s creation. The coming of the Holy Spirit at Pentecost “is a sign and message to women; you are empowered by God to be whole, to speak and create, to worship, and not fear or feel threatened by life or life’s circumstances.” The Holy Spirit does not differentiate. That is reason to rejoice!
My friend and I are still basking in the glory of the Deeply Rooted gathering. The beauty of the Holy Spirit is manifest in the deepening of our relationships to each other as we are nourished individually. The insight gained from that evening continues to feed our conversations. Speaking of feeding, treats are always an appreciated part of any gathering. The hospitality was appreciated—not only did it allow for more opportunity to engage but the yummy snacks were a simple gesture of sharing God’s love. I’m quite sure my friend and I received an abundance of it! I look forward to the next Deeply Rooted gathering and more connections to feed my hungry soul.
Deeply Rooted is coming up close. We’re exploring Wonder through poetry, worship, teaching, and fellowship and we have fantastic speakers who love to bring the Word. We can’t wait for you to see what we have in store for you. In November, when we met for the first time, we decided Deeply Rooted needed to keep going. Connections were made. Truth was spoken. Community happened.
We want you to experience that too. All over the internet, in churches and small groups, families and friendships, we are seeing that women are lonely. We’re afraid of initiating friendship. We’re terrified of going deep, getting close, and being known. We’re comparing ourselves to other women: their bodies, their families, their successes, their relationship with God. And we always come up wanting.
We’re in want and wanting at the same time. We long for healthy friendship. We are craving connection. We’re killing our desires because they frighten us and aren’t being met. There is hope. There is possibility.
We created Deeply Rooted because we, (Joy & Tammy) discovered a shared felt need. We needed to know and be known. And we wanted to invite others into the longing.
So many of us don’t have the time, energy, or money to attend Christian women’s conferences that offer community and encouragement. So we made our own, especially for local Chicagoland women.
We want to meet you. Please consider joining us and bringing a friend.
Rooted in Him,
Tammy & Joy
Deeply Rooted is a free one-night event for women and girls 6th grade and up. We have a gifted worship band to call us together and Anita Scott, poetry slam competitor at this year’s Justice Conference, is traveling from Dallas to perform spoken-word poetry for us. Sandy Ramsey, director of Cornerstone Community Outreach, a shelter for homeless women, children, and families, will be reminding us of our commitment to the poor, and a former CCO client, Denise, will be sharing her testimony of God’s protection and providence.
Katherine Williams is a lifelong learner—a seminary student who spent a year at Oxford, a gifted speaker and writer—who will be sharing about the eight blessings in the Beatitudes and how we need a deeper understanding of what being blessed really means.