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Welcome to Quarry Hill's Blog!

Quarry Hill Creative Center in Rochester, VT, founded 1946 by Barbara and Irving Fiske, is Vermont's oldest alternative community and at one time was probably also its largest. In the 60s -80s, as many as 90 people lived here.
It was and is visited each year, often in summer (but in every season, really) by visitors from all over the world.
We welcome interesting and creative people who are peaceful, bring no weapons, don't believe in hitting children or killing animals, and enjoy the beauty of Vermont and of themselves.

Most of us do not adhere to any particular dogma or religion, though many do find Eastern philosophy closest to our own thought (some of us are also members of the Quakers/Society of Friends).
We value the individual, particularly people who are energetic and have a sense of humor.
Visitors are welcome-- and prospective residents, too. There are some places for rent, others for sale. If interested, get in touch!
And, please follow the Blog and comment whenever you like!

"The symbol is the enemy of the reality, and the reality is ever one's true guide, true friend, true companion, and true self." Irving Fiske, 1908-1990

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

On Stewardship of the Earth. From Middlebury Friends (Quaker) Meeting, Vermont, my home meeting...

Friends may find this of interest. We have the opportunity to show our commitment to stewardship at Middlebury's Earth Day Fair on Apr 17 on town green (1-3 p). Brandon Episcopal Church will be there to promote their stainless steel bottle project in keeping with the fair's focus on water.

(EMail addresses removed to provide privacy)
Date: Monday, March 21, 2011, 6:04 PM

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Our mission is to foster awareness and deepen understanding of our lives as stewards of God's creation, and to practice environmental responsibility and sustainability
                     March 2011                                                                                                                                                                                     Number Four

Earth Steward Thread at the Up-coming Ministry Expos
The Episcopal Diocese of Vermont has announced the second annual Ministry Expo.  From our perspective as Earth Stewards, it is particularly exciting to have an earth stewardship thread running through the entire day.  The workshop titles and descriptions of that thread are as follows:
Zero-waste, Earth's Economy and Covenant (Shelburne only)
This workshop will explore concepts of zero-waste, Earth's economy (OIKOS), Earth Community and Covenant, and the relationship between them. Using the Diocesan Convention experience of recycling in 2010, we will explore how planning and actions can help us sustain Earth's economy through less consumption, less waste, and more effective recycling, in cooperation with Chittenden Solid Waste District.  Presenter will be Sylvia Knight (St. Paul’s, Burlington).
Faith Community Composting
This workshop will begin with a definition of composting and the “big picture,” local, and personal reasons for doing so.  It will look at organic ‘waste’ as the valuable resource it is and the crucial role it plays in making soil and growing our food.  The presentation will then discuss why is it important that churches act with ecological responsibility in this area and look at possible actions to be considered to make this happen in the local parish setting.  The workshop will conclude with reflections on being a part of God’s creation cycle and not apart from it.   Presenters will include Lisa Ransom, Susan Pillsbury, and Bob Wertz.
Community Gardening (Brattleboro only)
This workshop will look at the next logical step of using compost to grow food.  More and more gardens are appearing in our communities, being set up in a variety of ways.  Some churches are looking at the possibility of bringing the community garden to their own site.  St. Peter’s, Bennington, has been gardening on-site for a number of years.  Jordan Schell-Lambert, and others who are a part of this ministry, will lead this workshop, sharing their story and discussing other options with those participants who are or would like to consider doing something similar.
What Is a Parish Environmental Plan?
This workshop will answer the question and will explore the theological and economic value of having a Parish Environmental Plan.  Every parish has no doubt taken some steps to reduce heat loss, save energy, and reduce consumption.  There is so much more that can be done.  In an attempt to continue this fine work, the Earth Stewards Committee has developed a “cafeteria plan” resource for your consideration in deciding upon next steps in each parish.  There are a variety of activities to choose from, based upon the size, resources, and conditions of your particular parish.  This workshop will discuss some ways to implement an Environmental Plan.  Participants will be encouraged to share their stories of actions taken.  Presenters will include members of the Earth Stewards Committee, Angie Emerson, Susan Gratz, Frances Huessy, Ron McGarvey, Denise Noble, Sr. Laurian Seeber, and Bob Wertz.
Ecology and Spirituality: The Universe Story
This workshop will consist of 1] a viewing of the film, “The Awakening Universe”, 2] an opportunity for participants to respond to the film, 3] a music video and a group song, and 4] the playing of an interview with Brian Swimme on cosmology.  Based on the book, “The Universe Story” by Thomas Berry, OP (cultural historian, theologian, ecologian), this beautiful and inspiring film takes you on the ultimate journey, from the very birth of the Universe, through the arising of galaxies, the formation of Earth, the emergence of life, and finally to the development of human consciousness.  This film shows how science, spirit and ancient indigenous wisdom are now all converging to reveal that we stand in the very heart of that which created us.  An entirely new context for human life is arising in our lifetime, with the potential to transform forever our sense of separation, isolation, and alienation into one of connection, commonality and communion.  “To tell the story of anything,” says Thomas Berry, “you must tell the story of everything.”  This powerful film suggests that science, ecology, and spirituality are parts of one conversation.  The film is produced by Neal Rogin in collaboration with Mary Evelyn Tucker and Brian Swimme.  Moderator of this workshop will be Bob Wertz. 
Attending any one or all of these, which will be scheduled consecutively so as to be able to do that, would be a great way to begin or advance an eco-ministry in your local parish.
The Expos will actually consist of 15 workshops in all.  Check out the entire list by going to the diocesan website (top right corner).  That is where you will find a registration form as well (pre-registration is requested).  The dates are: Saturday, April 2, 2011, at Trinity, Shelburne and Saturday, April 9, 2011, at St. Michael’s, Brattleboro.  The times are: 8:30 am – 4:00pm.
The Earth Stewards Committee has recommended that the Ministry Expos be “zero-waste events” this year.  This means that containers will be provided throughout the workshop areas for recycling materials (as usual and according to local solid waste district protocol) and organic waste (food scraps & paper napkins) to be composted. When possible, please bring your lunch in a bag or container, with utensils, mugs, and cups that are reusable and will be taken home with you—and, PLEASE, no commercially purchased bottled water. The very popular stainless steel water bottles being sold by the Diocese will be available for purchase at the Expos.  They are $15.

Parishes in the diocese that are presently composting organic matter—if so, how?
Parishes in the diocese that are presently working a garden on church property—if so, how?
We would like to hear from you if the answer to either of the above questions is in the affirmative.
Send an email to Bob Wertz with a brief summary of your work.

Stainless steel water bottle up-date
We have crossed the 200 bottles sold mark.
We will be presenting another check to Pure Water for the World, this time in the amount of $698.
This will bring our contribution to date to $1,960.

Sr. Marion Honors, CSJ
“My art work is rooted in The New Story of Creation, the stunning story of the evolutionary Universe as it is presented by cultural historian Thomas Berry and others. Earth’s beauty as the primary revelation of God inspires my art work; the loss of this beauty throughout the whole community of life on our home planet fires in me the desire for my art, in some way, to serve Earth’s urgent need for healing and to participate in the deepening global realization that contemplation of the sacred Universe leads us to the ‘numinous presence whence all things come’ (Thomas Berry).”  Sr. Marion has given us permission to use selections from her art collection.  []
One such work of art is shared here:
  In the Beginning_Sr. Marion  
In the beginning
Art copyrighted by Marion C. Honors, CSJ

Presiding Bishop Katherine Jefferts Schori’s Lenten Message
Her invitation is to reflect and meditate on our life with respect to others throughout the world and to the whole of God’s Creation.  Watch and listen to her 3.5 minute message in this YouTube video:

Good links to ecological initiatives
(we’ll keep adding to this list—send Bob Wertz you favorite links to share)
Keep connected to the good work that is being done by so many in faith communities throughout the country and the world:
Green Faith
Earth Ministry (This is also Washington Interfaith Power & Light)
Join their email list—very helpful
     2 specific Lenten offerings:
The Genesis Covenant
Vermont Interfaith Power & Light
If interested you can sign up for their newsletter (at the bottom of their web page)
Massachusetts Interfaith Power & Light
                If interested you can s ign up for their newsletter

Relaying some email links that may be of interest to someone:
Episcopal Church Foundation Vital Practices—vestry papers—Caring for God’s Creation
Think Outside the Bottle campaign
EPA Energy Star Congregations
Ecumenical Water Network
Cool Harvest from national Interfaith Power and Light--connecting food, faith, and climate
IPL is offering a Cool Harvest Launch Kit which includes: a DVD with “Nourish”- a 30 min. film showing how food connects to issues such as social justice and climate change (DVD also includes 11 short films); an ecumenical prayer booklet “Table Grace in a World Struggling with Climate Change” which focuses on the theme of climate change and hunger; and The Seafood Pocket Guide.  The downloadable portions of the kit include: What Congregations Can Do; Cool Potluck Ideas; Film Screening and Cool Potluck fliers; “Nourish” Discussion Guide; Tips for Lowering Your Foodprint; A Climate-Friendly Farm Bill, and more.  The Cool Harvest Launch Kit is $10 (a 90% discount).  Order at:

Up-coming events :
March 22, 2011 World Water Day
April 17, 2011 Earth Day Fair “Sacred Waters” , Middlebury, VT (on the green) 1:00 – 3:00pm Middlebury Town Green
Renew your commitment to protecting earth's resources, especially our sacred waters, and celebrate spring and the beginning of our growing season at a music- and local food-filled fair on the town green following worship services. Begins with drumming circle open to all ages lead by the fabulous Rob Zollman. Bring seeds and seedlings to exchange. Local schools, churches, and organizations are invited to display their initiatives to honor and protect earth's resources, expecially Lake Champlain, our rivers and ground waters. For more info or to participate, contact Laura Asermily on Facebook or at 388-9478.
April 22, 2011 Earth Day
May 29, 2011 Rogation Sunday

This month’s recommended reading for those who have not read this one yet:
Omnivore’s Dilemma , by Michael Pollan, Penguin Books

1 comment:

  1. I would like to have one of these stainless steel bottles. It's very hard not to use bottled water at times, as I am often thirsty, and it's hard to figure out how to carry enough water for the day...