History & purpose of the Convening
Initiated in 2009, an inspired vision soon birthed the Councils first ritual during the Winter Solstice that same year. This ritual of rebirth would be the inaugural event that’s set the stage for this humble Council to then work collectively in offerings of education, ritual, healing, facilitation of community relations and spiritual guidance. Thus an annual Convening of the Trans-spiritual Council was begun.
The first two years of the Convening was held in Albuquerque New Mexico- the home of Council Member Virginia Stephenson. Strong friendships were forged with community and profound memories were etched in the hearts and minds of many. The week of the initial gathering would be the first time the entire Council would be together and without haste began a world-wind experience of deep listening, profound dialogue, joyful tears, community building, sweat ceremony, envisioning and sharing food.
As the third year came- the Council was honored to be hosted by Council Member Wren Walker Robbins in Saint Paul Minnesota. Her home became the epicenter of sacred ceremony, the opening address and endless heartfelt laughter. The public programing become more refined and expansive. The week was well documented on camera by a wonderful friend and compassionate supporter, Annie Russell- who’s now an Advisory Council Member. Participants of the public programming came from as far away as Gig Harbor Washington and several from nearby Minneapolis. The week ended with an intimate walk along the mighty Mississippi River amidst the vibrant fall foliage. Shortly prior- the Council was interviewed by local radio station KFAI as part of their LGBTQI programming. The Council is forever grateful for the Walker Robbins family for opening their loving home and hearts.
The fourth year brought an abundance of community, activities and deepened connections in Washington state. Hosted so generously by Gender Alliance of the South Sound, University of Puget Sound, several of their departments and The Rainbow Center. This was a momentous gathering of many as community found themselves immersed in the most exquisite vistas. Pipe ceremonies on the beach in Gig Harbor, mass ceremony in Tacoma’s historic Point Defiance Part and other activities at University, community center and so on. The official launch of the Convening was preceded by a dharma Talk in Olympia given by Council Member Leeza Edwards. A great many of the participants came from Seattle and all around the South Sound region.
The intention of the Convening is to humbly serve community, build relations while offering healing, education and spiritual guidance. Each year the Convening has a theme that resonates with the Council’s intentions and that of the local community being served. Past themes have been about healing, our stories and our youth. Though the Councils purpose includes facilitating healing in the transgender/gender-queer/gender-variant community and indeed the LGBTQI community at large- all of the programs are inclusive of everyone. The Trans-spiritual Council is a vessel of transformation and they recognize that true healing is inclusive of everyone.
If you’re considering hosting/sponsoring or helping to plan and coordinate future Convenings- we ask for you to consider what theme speaks to you and what’s called for in your community.
In the autumn or winter months each year, the Council facilitates public programs that enliven, inspire and educate participants through writing workshops, rituals, ceremonies, drumming circles, dharma talks, nature walks and other intimate affairs- such as potlucks and personal counseling/guidance. The public programs take place in homes, retreat/community/spiritual centers, universities, parks, etc. The official beginning of the Convening starts with an opening address and at least one event will occur each day for up to 4 days. The events subsequent to the opening address are uniquely organized each year. This is planned, coordinated and initiated by those involved in the planning process.
“Hosting the Trans Spiritual Council Convening in the Tacoma/Olympia/Gig Harbor area was indeed a highlight in the history of the Gender Alliance of the South Sound. The leadership of GASS has long believed that our transgender support group and extended family is in need of not just information and help regarding this unique physical transition that we are involved in, but that the intellectual and spiritual dimensions of this amazing quest should also be intentionally explored and…” Read more of this and other testimonials
There have been some suggestions to have the 2013 Convening be in the Southwest or Southeast.
Connect with us today
Would you like to host the Council in your community or simply have interest in supporting this endeavour?
Allow the passion that is alive in you, to engage with us today and together- let’s see what’s possible! Contact us!
There is no community without YOU! Take part in this extraordinary annual event.
The Advisory Council
Advises the Council on all it’s affairs. With a particular focus on the annual Convening. This is a newly forming Council and is seeking to connect with community in discovering how best to serve yours.
Their greatest focus currently is in firming up details regard the location and theme for the 2013 Convening.
For consideration of becoming part of the Advisory Council, contact firstname.lastname@example.org