YASC TRAINING: A RECAP
WHEW! holy hell it’s been a crazy past week! arriving in westford, leaving super early for cali, and then leaving super late to head back to westford and arriving the next day. but alas, i am now back in massachusets and settling in to my new home.
for those of you who are interested, here’s a quick recap of what my YASC training was! (fun fact:: all these notes were jotted down during the day on my iPhone, so they really are just quick recaps, tidbits of info, impressions, and thoughts. don’t expect a fancy essay of my time there, it was all a whirlwind of info, people, and moments with nature.)
DAY ONE:: arrive around 4pm and get stuck w top bunks because we’re the last to arrive haha. drop stuff off and head to a get to know you sesh, then lasagna dinner (best camp lasagna i’ve ever had!!), then UCC history and info. about half of us are UCC and half are from other faith traditions (methodist, catholic, still searching, etc) so the session on our denomination was really helpful to get all the volunteers on the same page. at the training were people from 4 YASC sites: us, Philly, St. Louis, and Seattle. i ended up going to bed hella early because I was super tired. oh! and i saw a large spider in the shower that night and didn’t even scream! so proud. i’m becoming an adult haha.
DAY TWO:: morning info session on who’s in charge and people to go to at our home sites (quite helpful since there’s a team of like 8 people to get to know at each site). ice breakers and more get to know you games. we discussed hopes for coming year w individual groups and then each site made a tshirt to represent these hopes (kinda cheesy, but it was a good way to get to know the people at your site). delish lunch w fresh baked cookiessssss 😍 OMG i’m obsessed with the food here! we then had time off and I went photographing. i scared of snakes the whole time (they have rattlesnakes out there.. eek!). returned and as a group we discussed living in intentional community: what it means, boundaries, conflicts, etc. then we started brainstorming covenant ideas since we’ll be living together in spiritual community. wonderful dinner w more cookies!!!! (see, i really am obsessed) then that night we talked about practical scary adult shit:: loans, health insurance, taxes. I wanted to cry haha i’m not ready! then a FIRE! i talked w sam (the spiritual sojourner in seattle) about him attending the pacific school of religion (a UCC seminary i visited two years ago) and w Mary about her studies in seminary and then also chatted w Susan about her journey possibly to seminary? basically, lots of seminary talk! it was all REFRESHING AND ENERGIZING and so unbelievably authentic and genuine. so blessed. NIGHT SKY. calm. surrounded with support and love. this is why I’m part of the UCC.
DAY THREE:: went over justice LED (justice leaders engaging and developing) stuff today with Susan (which i’m already trained in as of my sophomore year of uni). compassion, difference between direct service and systematic service, justice and faith, etc. went photographing again during our afternoon break: hung out by the fire put and soaked up the views and the rays, sat back by mountain side and listened to water runoff come down the side of the mountain and the soft woosh as it became a stream. soothing. more justice LED training. then i met with Mary who wants me to help start a blog for the YASC program. shower, no spiders this time thankfully. late night chat with the gals in my cabin aka we stayed up til 10:44 talking and then all crashed because everyone is crazy tired haha. good times.
DAY FOUR:: wahhhh! last day here at camp. morning sessions about ourselves and bonding as a group. gave mary feedback on how the training sessions were (AKA fabulous and we all loved meeting one another). another fantastic meal there at camp and then we were off to be blessed. the spiritual sojourners led a goodbye ceremony of sorts w a sending off blessing at the end for each of us. intimate and real and powerful. from there we all hung out until shuttles came to take us to the airport. first group left at 2:30pm, second group at 3:30pm, and miriam, scott, and i left at 6:30pm. once we were the last ones at the camp i ran off to my favorite place: chill stream from mountain run off. took more photos, sun bathed, read more steinbeck. PURE BLISS. never wanted that moment to end. however, it did. 9pm flight to san fran, hour layover, then 11pm flight from san fran to chicago, three hour layover, then 8:30am flight to new hampshire, then driving back to westford. SO TIRED!! but back in massachusets