[Springboard] Gathering Process Suggestions

Marilyn R Crocker marilyncrocker at juno.com
Sun Oct 21 22:26:17 EDT 2007

Dear David and Pat,

I am chagrined to realize it has taken me over a month to carefully read
your early September e-mail re: Gathering Process Suggestions.  Although
I have not been an on-site participant in either the Denver or Abbey
North gatherings, I think your recommendations are on target.

I hope you both will be at the Junaluska meeting to offer your gifts and

On Wed, 5 Sep 2007 10:30:45 -0400 <silencefoundation at cox.net> writes:
> Dear Friends,
> We both left the Abbey North gathering earger to go with 
> Soringboard.  Now we're wondering where's the follow up?  Maybe it 
> was simply a golden moment which is all we need at this point.  In 
> any case this offers some reflection on the processes we might 
> follow in the future.
> We feel like we're preaching to the choir here but following the 
> Denver and Abbey North gatherings we did want to send you all 
> something about possible meeting methods for whoever plans the next 
> gatherings to brood on.  We hope this will spark your thinking about 
> how we can put them into our future Springboard events. 
> We envision that our gatherings with one another can become a lab 
> where we set the standard on creative meeting methods.   This is 
> vital to the guild and every other thing we do.   It’s important 
> that we incorporate the best of the newest (and some older) methods 
> and keep looking for and trying out methods as they emerge.  Here 
> are 8 on my mind:
> 1) A Facilitation Team – Name them and claim them.   These people 
> have to be on hand and we have to plan meetings when they are 
> available and help them get there.   I think it’s Jack Gilles, Jim 
> Wiegel, George Walters, and probably Jan Sanders.  
> 2) River Guides – At least 3 of these and they need to be assigned 
> prior to the meeting and given a context on their role.  River 
> Guides hold energy, pray, listen, intervene only when the group is 
> blocked, and speak the mind or location of the group (i.e. “I 
> think we are going in circles”, “I think we are ignoring….”, 
> etc.)  Remember Year 2000?  Lovely
> people for this are David Scott, Richard Sims, Judy Wiegel, Thea, 
> and John P.
> 3) Group Building Tools to Open, Close and Refresh – This includes 
> group poems, silence exercises, ritual, songs, body movement, 
> doodle/quick art, play, dance, chants.  We have a pretty good list of 
> quick ones and I know others in the group have many such tools.
> 4) Pre-Work -   People these days are using technology to handle 
> pre-meeting reports.   Create a template for a 1 page report and ask 
> everyone to send it to the listserve group two days prior to the 
> meeting.   Everyone reads everyone else’s.  Then when you gather
> people can give much shorter symbolic reports and you can harvest 
> the gold in an opening reflection.   (Jump starting the “where we 
> are” work).
> 5) Streamlined ways to get thinking – We tried several of these 
> this time.  The Affinity Method, Groups of Three, Individual Writing 
> Time before sharing, etc.   The goal here is less words in the air 
> and less words on the walls.   This gets us to the heart of it 
> easier.
> 6) Quaker Discussion Methods – we love their discipline of putting 
> pauses between each person who speaks, the rule that you do not 
> speak if you agree and also that silent persons Aae given a special 
> time to speak.   A bell or timekeeper for speakers can help, too but 
> this can be tricky if the timekeeper isn’t really sensitive.  I 
> like River Guides better.
> 7) Reflective Process – Noble Silence, writing poetry as a 
> reflection, covenanting rituals (Like the “What are you committed 
> to?” which was great at Abbey North), late evening solitary 
> reflection but done together (alone in the presence of one another)
> 8) Streamlined Task Reporting Templates - so we can get back to each 
> other within 7-10 days of the meeting with our work assignment.
> Well, we hope this is helpful.   We have no illusion that our 
> gatherings will be tidy or neat because we’re on a historical edge 
> just like everybody else. But ain’t it grand?  
> Blessings,  
> Pat & David
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Marilyn R. Crocker, Ed.D
Crocker & Associates, Inc.
123 Sanborn Road
West Newfield, ME 04095
(207) 793-3711

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