Event Archives

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Event Dates: Feb. 8, 15, Mar. 1, 7, 14, 23, 2016

For six Mondays  nine participants shared enriching conversations on John Philip Newell’s latest book “The Rebirthing of God”. On a pilgrimage of Iona the author led us through the challenges contemporary spiritual teachers have surfaced to reach a conclusion that the rebirthing of God requires the rebirthing of love in our own hearts and society. John  Lawson and Barbara Susan Booth, who facilitated the experience, were touched by the dialogue and the growing gift to their own spiritual journeys.

We have invited John Philip Newell in person to come from Scotland to Guelph to present an evening talk on this book on Nov. 16, 2016. The Bookshelf generously provided the welcoming environment of the round table in the back room of the store. It was perfect for our dialogues. The cost of the series was $70.00 incl. HST.

Event Date: May 9, 2016

On Monday evening, May 9, 2016 Joanna Macy gave a stellar talk "Spiritual Responses to the Great Unraveling: Guidance for the Way forward from Earth's Faith Traditions" to a sold out audience at the Arboretum Centre at the University of Guelph. At 87 years of age she captivated a diverse audience with her insight and wisdom on the Earth's crisis and left us with a sensitive and healing approach to a devastating reality. Her inspiration and courage were palpable. The bookshelf provided her books for sale at the event. The cost was $20 or $10 incl. HST depending on need. Rob O'Flanagan from Guelph Today generously wrote the following article: https://www.guelphtoday.com/local-news/living-well-in-an-unravelling-world-290895

Event Date: May 9-19, 2016

From Monday evening’s opening talk on May 9th to the afternoon of May 19th Joanna Macy and Anne Symens-Bucher led an awe-inspiring 10 Day Intensive on The Work That Reconnects. Drawing from deep ecology, systems theory and spiritual traditions, the Work That Reconnects (WTR) builds motivation, creativity, courage and solidarity for the transition to a sustainable human culture from the chaos and tragedy in our current world. First emerging in 1978, this pioneering, open-source body of work has its roots in the teachings and experiential methods of Joanna Macy.

The forty participants above were truly moved by the gift of this rejuvenating work and the comradery manifesting from the authentic, deeply moving experiences offered. Joanna’s teaching and Anne’s facilitation were exceptional and no place could have been more in tune with the work than Loyola House. The precious time spent together will remain in all of our hearts as an unusual blessing. The initial cost was $282.50 including HST, the Loyola House 10-day cost was $1,200.00 with accommodation and $550.00 without. Dana as gift offered individually to Joanna for her work was a private contribution based on the participant’s means.
Event Dates: June 10-11, 2016

On Friday evening Michael Conforti presented an engaging and informative talk “Trauma, Resilience and Healing” to 64 participants at St. Brigid’s Villa. His comfortable presentation style and depth of experience with such a challenging topic contributed to the stellar success of the evening. We were delighted to welcome his wife Loralee to the talk and to thank Muriel McMahon for making it all possible. The tickets were $20 reserved and $25 at the door.

On Saturday morning Michael presented a workshop “Deepening our Understanding of Trauma and Healing” for 27 participants and Saturday afternoon a colloquium for clinicians only: “Clinical Aspects of Trauma, Resilience and Healing” for 12 local clinical practitioners. The workshop cost was $75 and the colloquium $120 plus HST.

Michael’s unique sensitivity in translating images from the unconscious, discerning underlying archetypal patterns and tracking the numinous in a deep healing process was truly exceptional.

The unanimous appreciation for his work at St. Brigid’s Villa in Guelph has helped convince him to return next year to teach a workshop on dreams.

Event Date: October 20, 2016

On Thursday afternoon, Rosemary Dowling facilitated discussion and introduced the film “When I was Young I said I Would be Happy”. The film documented a humanitarian project in Rwanda for reducing trauma in survivors of the genocide.

Rosemary, a former nun, school teacher and principal from N.Y. volunteered with the project in Rwanda and generously shared her experiences with an captivated Guelph audience. The Bookshelf kindly added the time for us to show the film.

All profits from the undertaking went to the project.


Event Dates: October 21, 22 and 23, 2016

For three full days in October Mariabruna Sirabella professionally taught an exceptional SoulCollage® Faciliators Training at St. Brigid’s Villa in Guelph.

Eleven new facilitators were trained and five returning facilitators refreshed their skills. The extended revised training and new manual invited deeper dialogue and promising new ideas. 

The enriching and refreshing learning experience was greatly appreciated by all participants.

The fee was $901.00 for new facilitators and half price for those returning.

Event Dates: October 28 - 30, 2016

Mariabruna Sirabella facilitated another excellent workshop “Shaped by Earth: Exploring the Archetypal Qualities of Nature at St. Brigid’s Villa, Ignatius Jesuit Centre, Guelph, ON. Participants explored the various faces of this complex element with movement, image and insights.

The key words that guided our exploration were presence, learning, nourishment, interconnectedness, delight, healing, letting go, and clarification of the demarcation between ourselves and all that is not us. We welcomed a new grounded sense of our connection with and as earth.

Once again Mariabruna continued to astound us with her wealth of experience and clear and compassionate teaching. We left enriched and most grateful.

The fee for the workshop was $339.00 incl. HST.

Event Date: October 30, 2016

On Oct. 30, 2016 Mariabruna Sirabella led a workshop and ritual “Burn No More” in honour of those burned at the stake for Nature based sensitivities at a time when the witch hunts were rampant.

We gathered from 4:15pm - 8:30pm to make SoulCollage® cards commemorating those who died and participated in an honouring ritual.

Around the fire place with candles at St. Brigid’s we gave witness by remembering the trauma and contributing the compassion and respect that was absent at the time.

This powerful healing ceremony was a rare gift to those women and men present.

The contribution was $60.00 including HST.

Event Date: November 16, 2016

On Wednesday evening, Nov. 16, 2016 John Philip Newell gave a fascinating talk on his new book “The Rebirthing of God: Christianity’s Struggle for New Beginnings”. John Philip is the Celtic poet, peacemaker, and scholar teaching the sacredness of being and the of-Godness that is at the heart of our lives and all life. His presence engendered new hope and possibility in the fascinated participants. The bookshelf provided his books for sale at the event at Dublin Street United Church.

Study groups on his book followed at Dublin Street United Church facilitated by John Buttars and at St. Brigid’s Villa facilitated by John Lawson and Barbara Susan Booth. The event was sponsored in partnership with the Guelph Seminar (photo below).

The cost was $20 or $25 at the door.