Faith

November 10 & 11: Empty

God gives where he finds empty hands. ~ Augustine

Most of us have been acquainted with emptiness at some point. It may be from a breakup, a severed friendship, grief over a loved one’s death, despair brought on by depression, job loss, chronic pain, physical or emotional trauma, and major disappointments. None of us are alone in these experiences but, in the moment, we feel certain we are.

Some of us may even long for emptiness when our hearts and minds are fragmented and exhausted, when our lives are crowded by expectation, need, fear, and anxiety. We can’t shut our thoughts down, can’t quiet them, can’t escape them. We feel imprisoned by our own brains. Our dreams shrivel.

That empty ache can be a warning that God is being squeezed out of us, that the Holy Spirit in us is being crushed under care and worry. Driven to distraction, we can’t quiet ourselves enough to hear Jesus speaking to our hearts, inviting us to surrender, inviting us to meet him in a place apart.

What if the emptiness is an invitation?

When I think of the word empty, the image that comes to mind is open hands. There are times when we feel like we have nothing to offer God, our friends, our boss, our family, our ministry. It’s a glass half empty/half full situation. What if those empty hands are telling us that we can empty ourselves of comparison, shame, anger, envy, guilt? What if Jesus is calling us to empty ourselves in order to fit in more of him?

Augustine put it like this, “My soul is like a house, small for you to enter, but I pray you to enlarge it. It is in ruins, but I ask you to remake it. It contains much that you will not be pleased to see: this I know and do not hide. But who is to rid it of these things? There is no one but you.”

We’re gathering women together to acknowledge and talk about the emptiness we have in common and to challenge one another to dig deep and empty ourselves so that Christ may take up more room in our hearts. There must be more of him and less of us. Let’s learn how to receive. Let’s get empty for Jesus.

Join us in Chicago for spoken-word poetry, workshops, worship, teaching, art, and fellowship!

Friday night: Poet Sarah Giove and speaker Chi Chi Okwu, worship, dessert reception.

Saturday: Kimberly Majeski and Tracey Bianchi will be speaking. Diana Shiflett will be leading a workshop on spiritual formation. We will be having 3 workshop tracks: Social Justice, Faith, and Art. (The Illustrated Faith workshop has a $10 supply fee.)

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*We have different payment options as well as an opportunity to sponsor someone with 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.* 

Faith · Speaker · Video

Kimberly Penrod Pelletier: The Essential Work of Waiting

“What I need from the Lord and what I bring to my waiting and what you bring to your waiting is unique to your story, to your baggage, to your sin patterns. And what God is unraveling in you in your waiting is unique to you.”

Faith · Speaker · Video

Kathy Khang: What Does It Mean to Wait?

One of the reasons we chose Waiting as the theme for our November gathering is that it would help prepare our hearts for Advent, that month-long waiting for Jesus to be born. Our whole universe is in an Advent season waiting for the Christ to return. Our hearts, by turns hopeful and despairing, are longing for the Light to break through. Historically God’s people are not stellar waiters. We take things into our own hands; begging for kings, complaining in the desert, impregnating servant girls, building golden calves. We don’t know how to wait well. We see Jesus on his knees in the wilderness imploring his father, and we don’t realize that’s supposed to be our posture while waiting too. Join us, on your knees, in this dark time as we wait for the Morning Star to rise.

Community · Faith · Worship

7 Days Till Deeply Rooted!!

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

Worship at Deeply Rooted

We launched Deeply Rooted as a response to a shared need for biblical teaching, worship, and fellowship.

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.

 

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Anita worshipping at Deeply Rooted

Faith · Prayer · Workshops

Meet Ramelia Williams

Ramelia Williams, Deeply Rooted speaker

 

Pastor Ramelia is passionate about creating environments for stimulating racial reconciliation and inner healing through the Church. She lives this out as Lead Pastor of Ninth Hour Covenant Church, a monoethnic church being replanted as a multicultural congregation. She was a preaching pastor at New Community Covenant-Bronzeville, a multiracial church plant in Chicago over the past 5 years. In her previous work as a hospital chaplain in San Diego and Chicago, she offered short-term pastoral care to families experiencing death, trauma, and loss. This work prepared her for her current ministry development of a network of spirituality groups that focus on inner healing for women who have survived physical, sexual and emotional abuse. Pastor Ramelia earned a Master of Divinity and Certificate in Spiritual Direction from North Park Theological Seminary.  At the Seminary, she serves on a team of Spiritual Directors who facilitate spiritual formation groups for students. Pastor Ramelia experiences deep joy when running, hiking, riding horses or taking in breathtaking views of God’s creation.

Pastor Ramelia will be leading a workshop on Saturday at 1:55, “A Gospel Framework for Social Justice” in the Lecture Room.

Click here to listen to her sermon “When Did Your Hope Die?”

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Faith · Speaker · Video

From the Archives: Lina Abujamra, May 2017

Lina Abujmara, Deeply Rooted speaker

Lina is a straight-up powerhouse. She prowls on the stage, never stays still, and launches one truth bomb after another. She has a seemingly endless store of energy and her passion is contagious.

Lina is the founder of Living with Power Ministries. Her vision is to bring hope to the world by connecting Biblical answers to everyday life. She offers podcasts, books, articles, and other resources. One of her podcasts is called Morning Minutes, a journey through a book of the Bible in 5 minutes a day!! At the moment she is going through Esther.

 

Faith · Speaker · Video

Kathy Khang on Rest

Deeply Rooted is 3 weeks from today and we wanted to give you a sneak peek of what to expect.

Kathy Khang is a witty, intelligent, profound woman who has the ability to engage her audience on their heart level. She brings an energy and wisdom that inspires, challenges, and encourages. and connects the Gospel to her listeners in a remarkably accessible style. Which is why we asked her to return and be our opening speaker!

This is Kathy Khang speaking on Rest at Deeply Rooted in November 2016.

Art & Design · Faith · Speaker · Workshops

November Deeply Rooted Workshops

Besides gathering women together for solid Biblical teaching, we offer smaller, more intimate groups to explore faith and creativity in a setting with hands-on experience and lively discussion. We’re so excited to announce we’ve added a new track for this gathering and the ones to follow. We want to engage culture and current events in a relevant way and respond to the responsibility we have for awareness and action. We’re launching a Social Justice track!

Here are the workshops we’re offering in November:

 

Social Justice

Searching for Home: Homelessness in the U.S.

Beth Nicholls has served at the Cornerstone Community Outreach homeless shelter for over 25 years.

Social Justice: A Biblical Framework.

Ramelia Williams: pastor, spiritual director, and activist.

Faith

Julie Johnson, director of women’s ministry at Church of the Beloved in Albany Park, Chicago, will be hosting a workshop encouraging us to make a habit of “coming in out of the wind,” as C. S. Lewis said. She will be presenting accessible ideas for navigating a daily relationship with Jesus.

Spiritual Director Kimberly Penrod Pelletier will be presenting on the topic When You Are Weary in the Waiting.

Art

 Suzanne Stewart and Colleen Davick will teach us how to make our own leather cuff bracelets.

Sara Van Alkemade will be combining the Arashi Shibori technique (Japanese pole-wrapping) with microwave dyeing, teaching us to create one-of-a-kind silk scarves.

The two art workshops require a $10 supply fee, payable online during registration.

Faith · Poetry · Speaker

Speakers for November 2017

The main reason we gather women together is to provide teaching that is biblically sound, accessible, engaging, challenging, and inspiring. We pray hard about who to invite and spend a lot of time looking for gifted local women who have wisdom, integrity, and a heart for reaching and encouraging others.

We are so excited for this lineup and know these women will bring you Gospel truth with a side of humor and draw you closer to Jesus and one another. We will be introducing each of these women in separate posts.

ANITA SCOTT

Our dear friend Anita Scott will be joining us again with her incredibly moving spoken-word poetry. Anita has become a mainstay of Deeply Rooted in November.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

KATHY KHANG

Also back by popular demand is Kathy Khang who will be opening our gathering on Friday night! Kathy currently serves as a regional multiethnic ministries director with InterVarsity Christian Fellowship (IVCF)/USA.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

KIMBERLY PENROD PELLETIER

Kimberly Pelletier is a trained spiritual director, writer, and Director of Soul Care at Mansio Center in Glen Ellyn, IL. She blogs about grief, spiritual formation, and sexuality at kimberlypenrodpelletier.com. With the rest of her time, Kimberly can be found wearing a tool belt, brewing kombucha, or traipsing around the woods with her husband and three kids.

RAMELIA WILLIAMS

Ramelia Williams is currently in the call process, having recently earned a Master of Divinity degree and Certificate in Spiritual Direction from North Park Theological Seminary.
Art & Design · Design Team · Faith · Photos

Suzanne Stewart: Deeply Rooted Artist in Residence

Suzanne Stewart has been a part of Deeply Rooted from the beginning. She was part of the women’s small group Bible study that became the core team, and because of her creativity and skill, became one of the major players on our design team.

The theme for our last gathering in May was HOPE. When our team was brainstorming visual elements to incorporate, one idea was succulents. We all jumped on the idea and came up with a color scheme based on colors in nature. We wanted to have a striking image that would encompass hope and what better one than a succulent? Hanging on for year after parched year sending roots down deep seeking water.

How long have our own dry hearts held on through enduring drought? How many times have we been tempted to pull up our roots and look for water elsewhere, fearing the streams of living water were for everyone but us?

We are all that woman at the well looking for the world’s water when Jesus is telling us that water will not satisfy, “but whoever drinks of the water that I will give him will never be thirsty again. The water that I will give him will become in him a spring of water welling up to eternal life.”

Hold out for that water. Don’t pull up your roots yet. If you need a taste of living water, let us know. We will pray for you and walk alongside you.

“When she first started painting succulents Suzanne was surprised and amazed by the drama and beauty produced by such a hardy plant. ‘It’s a survivor. They don’t give up easily. I’ve found so much inspiration working on this project.’ ”

When the manager of Everybody’s Coffee saw Suzanne’s paintings he offered her a show in the coffee shop. You can come see them for yourself and get a little hope infusion. The title of her show? HOPE Anyways. 935 W. Wilson Ave., Uptown, Chicago.

Faith · Photos · Speaker · Workshops · Worship

Deeply Rooted in Pictures

Our gatherings in November are two days, complete with lunch and workshops. These are pictures from Deeply Rooted, November 2016.

Community · Faith · Poetry · Speaker · Video

Deeply Rooted Coming Soon!!

Deeply Rooted is two months from today!! We’re so excited to announce our speakers for May and show you our new video.

 

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.

Click here to register!

Community · Faith

Looking for the Light

 

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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 hopehope 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.

Like us on Facebook, follow us on Twitter and Instagram to stay in the loop!

Faith

Thank You From Deeply Rooted

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Front L-R: Hilde Bialach, Colleen Davick, Tammy Perlmutter, Joy Williams, Tiana Coleman Back L-R: Suzanne Stewart, Beth Nicholls, Debbie Baumgartner, Hannah Siemens, Andrea Spicer

 

It’s been a month to the day since we gathered together. We had an amazing time with all of you and are still processing how the Lord showed himself through the worship, the speakers, and everyone who attended!

We’re so thankful for the privilege of serving you this way and look forward to many more Deeply Rooted events in the future. We would love to hear your thoughts and feedback. Would you like to see workshops in between gatherings? Book discussion groups? Prayer circles? Fill out the form and let us know!

Faith · Workshops

Meet Dr. Beth Felker Jones

We at Deeply Rooted want to give women the opportunity to connect with God intellectually as well as emotionally which is why we’ve asked Dr. Beth Felker Jones to speak.  Beth is a theology professor at Wheaton College who teaches classes like Gender and Theology, Christian Ethics, Marriage, Sex, and Family in the Christian Tradition, Doctrine of the Holy Spirit, and Human Trafficking: Political and Theological Perspectives.

On the lighter side of things, she enjoys writing on pop culture, tackling literary phenomena and its effects on our hearts and mind, evidenced in articles such as “The Hunger Games, Christian Ethics and the Young,” and “Why Mark Driscoll is Wrong About Twilight.”

She writes regularly for the media section of The Christian Century, sharing her thoughts on Beyonce’s Lemonade, the movie Bad Moms, Marvel’s Jessica Jones, Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt, Game of Thrones, and The Walking Dead.

She is the author of several books: Practicing Christian Doctrine: An Introduction to Thinking and Living Theologically, Faithful: A Theology of Sex, Marks of His Wounds: Gender Politics and Bodily Resurrection, and Touched by a Vampire: Discovering the Hidden Messages in the Twilight Saga.

 

Community · Faith · Speaker

The Telling of Their Stories

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Thoughts on Deeply Rooted, May 2016, by Diane Buell

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.

Design Team · Faith · Prayer · Workshops

Deeply Rooted Workshops: Creativity

weaving on wood with flowers and fabric

Reflective Weaving

In this workshop you will be working alongside artists Suzanne and Colleen to create your own one-of-a-kind weaving with soft fibers, fabrics, plants, and flowers as you use the time for prayerful reflection.
Supply fee: $5 (cash only)
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Finding Rest: Journaling with Color and Line

Many of us journal, some in time of crisis or need, while others very regularly get their responses down on things they have read or conversations they have had. Some of us would like to journal, but those blank pages seem overwhelming. Journaling using line and color may be a way to give a boost to an established journaling practice, or give us another way to respond to what is going on in our lives and around us.

Are you saying to yourself, “I can’t even draw a straight line?” Art journaling is not about making great art. It is about letting color and line speak for you when words can’t. No art ability is required. If you can hold a crayon in your hand, you have everything you need.

Come join us for a creative rest you can engage in during Deeply Rooted and beyond. We will be using easily found items (provided) to create small journal pages.

Debra Strahan
Debra Strahan
Community · Faith · Prayer · Worship

You’re Invited.

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You never know what to expect when you throw a party or host an event. You hope people show up and are terrified nobody will. You are hyper-aware of every word spoken, wondering how this person or that one is going to receive it, if there will be offense taken or hearts opened. You see it through an outsider’s eyes and listen with an outsider’s ear, praying that God will show up even if only a few people do.
Those of us who organized the event felt all those feelings and thought all those thoughts. We learned at our May gathering that you have to make yourself slow down, look away, and be fully present.
Each of us came with expectation, anticipation, and maybe even a little bit of fear. But we showed up. We talked to people we didn’t know, raised our hands in worship, added new Facebook friends, experienced deep, new truths, and made meaningful connections with strangers. Even more importantly, God showed up. In a different way to each one of us, in just the way we needed him to.
Some of us needed to allow ourselves a voice to stand up to misogyny. Others of us needed to hear that everything will be okay even if we don’t have answers right now. Still more of us needed to be told, again, that we are loved, seen, and heard. That we belong. A few of us needed to be safe enough in our discomfort to ask what is stirring our hearts with unease.
We received good feedback from our attendees and speakers:
“Thank you for a wonderful evening with Deeply Rooted. The speakers affirmed in me that my voice as a single woman is valid and my story is worth telling. I have been making a lot of art about my journey—these women gave voice to all women who need the encouragement to stand rooted in their faith and rooted in their womanhood.”
One of our speakers, Rev. Dr. Velda Love, shared this: “Thank you for the invitation to speak. Look at God . . . always doing amazingly more than we could ever expect or imagine. The women were lovely, beautiful, ready, receptive, and very present. I had an opportunity to hug and talk with young women and more seasoned women. There is so much work to be done in our lives, so anytime you need me just call.”
Many women were challenged and moved by our speakers, and encouraged by our worship. If you missed that gathering, we are planning our next one for Friday, November 4th and Saturday, November 5th! It will be our 3rd event and our 1st anniversary so we’re making it bigger and better! We’ll have an additional worship set, 4 workshops (you choose two) and a catered lunch with the speakers and leaders.
Right now we are pricing registration at $35 for the full event. This is a limited time offer, so please take advantage of it! Invite your friends and family! Invite your pastor or your pastor’s wife, your women’s ministry leader, your small group, or your Pokémon Go team.
We are praying you here, and if there is anything else we can pray for, use the contact form below. Click here for registration!
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Faith · Speaker

We Showed Up

You never know what to expect when you throw a party or host an event. You hope people show up and are terrified nobody will. You are hyper-aware of every word spoken, wondering how this person or that is going to receive it, if there will be offense taken or hearts opened. You see it through an outsider’s eyes and listen with an outsider’s ear, praying that God will show up even if only a few people do.
You have to make yourself slow down, look away, and be fully present.
Each of us came with expectation, anticipation, and maybe even a little bit of fear. But we showed up. We talked to people we didn’t know, raised our hands in worship, added new Facebook friends, experienced a deep, new truth, and made meaningful connections with strangers. Even more importantly, God showed up. In a different way to each one of us, in just the way we needed him to.
Some of us needed to allow ourselves a voice to stand up to misogyny. Others of us needed to hear that everything will be okay even if we don’t have answers right now. Still more of us needed to be told, again, that we are loved, seen, and heard. A few of us needed to be safe enough in our discomfort to ask what is stirring our hearts with unease.
We received good feedback from our attendees and speakers. Here are two examples:
“Thank you for a wondering evening with Deeply Rooted. The speakers affirmed in me that my voice as a single woman is valid and my story is worth telling. I have been making a lot of art about my journey—these women gave voice to all women who need to encouragement to stand rooted in their faith and rooted in their womanhood.”
Rev. Dr. Velda Love had this to say: “Thank you for the invitation to speak. I just did what you asked and look at God . . . always doing amazingly more than we could ever expect or imagine. The women were lovely, beautiful, ready, receptive, and very present. I had an opportunity to hug and talk with young women and more seasoned women. There is so much work to be done in our lives, so anytime you need me just call.”
Many women were challenged and moved by our speakers, and encouraged by our worship. We want to be available to you in between events, so please keep in touch. Let us know how God used our speakers to speak to your heart. Give us some ideas for future events, workshops, gatherings, etc. Tell us how we can pray for you.
Community · Faith · Poetry · Worship

THREE WEEKS TIL DEEPLY ROOTED!

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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

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