Yes, my friends I am a city girl at heart – but I discovered this weekend that I officially have a BD soul. Since childhood I have been seeking beyond the electric glare, noisy leaf-blowers & traffic, to work with the elemental beings who live in every so-called weed, parkway, garden, & green-space, calling out to be acknowledged.  So I was thrilled to be asked to make the short road trip to East Troy WI, where I have been many times to visit Zinniker Farm, the oldest BD farm in America, just 2 hours from the city lights, for the 2020 Fellowship of Preparation Makers Conference.

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Photo by Ron MacKenzie
*Michael Fields Agricultural Institute = In my mind the ideal of this name, keeping the spirit of Christopher & Martina Mann alive, would be = The Biodynamic fields where the Countenance of Christ are a cultured.
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Photo by Ron MacKenzie

When I arrived at the Michael Fields Agricultural Institute, Ryan Herring was leading a full on science project with soil chromatography; a qualitative method used in biodynamic agriculture to reveal the hidden qualities of soil, crop quality, bio-fertilizers, & health.

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Folks brought in samples from their farm or garden for assessment. The process creates these amazing circular images – making visible the etheric formative forces within the soil. The sacred geometry was evident, producing beautiful works of art, as well as allowing folks to diagnose & analyze their soil quality thru applied science.  

Photo by Jen Silverman
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Benji Kenner
Photo by Lloyd Nelson

After an amazing dinner (all the food was locally sourced & cooked. Allison Pratt-Szeliga was our amazing hostess!) the evening program commenced & I was introduced by my dear Petra Zinniker who had asked me to bring a ‘Candlemas’ offering to kick off this year’s theme “Tools to Bring the Cosmic Light into the Earth”.


I presented an overview of the energies of this Cross-Quarter time, holding the indication of quickening, exemplified by the rising sap. I brought Rudolf Steiner’s Seed Exercise in as the main activity, which folks delved into with good humor & earnestness.

We ended with ‘St. Brigid’s Song to Christ as the Lord of the Elements’; & a homemade chant for the blessing of the seeds, in the fires of purpose, -Brigid’s eternal flame, brought from Kildare Ireland, which sparked singing & comradery in the light of the promise of Spring. What a glorious evening. We all went into the night with a collective glow.

Photo by Lloyd Nelson

1st thing the next morning, we invited those on the other side who were founders of the Fellowship & influential to the Biodynamic movement. Then we enlivened the social realm with individual intros, & got a glimpse into the work of the Fellowship & their primary ‘shapers’ who refer to themselves as SG2 = ‘Subgroup 2’– a noble, yet truly humble collection of dedicated prep makers from around the country. Wali Via set the tone by sharing the groups motto: ‘We agree to disagree, but not to be disagreeable‘.- which I have taken to heart.

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Mac Mead gave a captivating lecture on ‘Why Biodynamics’? He has been practicing this powerful earth healing for over 40 years, primarily in Camphill communities, & is the program director of the Pfeiffer Center.

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Photo by Jen Siverman

Respected Elder Hugh Courtney shared his insights on ‘How the cosmic works into the earth’. Years ago, after his fateful mentoring by Josephine Porter, he created The Josephine Porter Institute for Applied Biodynamics (JPI) a non- profit organization dedicated to making biodynamic preparations of the highest quality, & conducting research & education, which is accomplished by emphasizing the spiritual, as well as the practical aspects.

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The afternoon was buzzing on a high vibration when Marjory House & Lloyd Nelson took us on a hands-on journey, focusing on the different ways to make & use BD 501 & BD 508. By combining these 2 preps, the earth receives a balance of ‘As Above, So Below’.

Photo by Jen Silverman

We experienced a real alchemical process by employing an innovative stirring method to potentize equisetum & other plant & mineral substances, by tipping a large kombucha bottle in a leminscate back & forth chanting ‘Matter to Spirit – Spirit to Matter’.

Photo by Jen Silverman
Photo by Jen Silverman
Photo by Jen Silverman
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Photo by Jen Silverman

Dawn Rains assisted by adding 22 kt gold leaf into the fine quartz powder, blending it to make a stunning white paste, with which they filled the cow horns. This was pure magic.


In the evening, mover & shaker Brian Wickert, led us in the ‘Journey of the Prep Maker’, by putting folks in the inner circle 1 by 1 according to years of experience, so we could hear a bit of their fascinating biographies & how they came to this important work. The many stories of their experience in the field, was captivating & enlightening.

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Photo by Ron MacKenzie

Many of the folks expanded the dialogue over at the ‘party dorm’ across from Michael Fields, which used to be the dairy barn; having animated discussions late into the night. I was grateful to hear more about Demeter from my roommate Jen Silverman who is a certification specialist.  

Photo by Lloyd Nelson

The next day Mac Mead took us from Lemuria to today, showing the history & mystery of silica in relation to human & cosmic evolution – bringing in easy to digest snippets of Steiner’s various works, tying it all together with grace.

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Dr. Mark Kamsler of The Lili Kolisko Institute brought in the perspective of anthroposophical medicine from his experience treating children with silica.

Photo by Ron MacKenzie

Ryan Herring gave interesting interpretations of the Chromatograms.

Photo by Lloyd Nelson
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Photo by Ron MacKenzie

And then we did a whole investigative session with Wali Via on the quality comparison of 18 samples of BD 501 & BD 508 – set out for us to evaluate, writing up our analysis based on sense impressions as well as whatever else arose – So interesting to hear the various descriptions & insights. I was fascinated with how deeply Ines Kinchen lived into her experience, sharing many unique perspectives as a Waldorf teacher & mom, biodynamic gardener, beekeeper & healer.

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Photo by Ron MacKenzie

I bought a bunch of bio hemp products donated by some of the farmers at the Silent auction. Angela Curtes founder of ‘Angie’s Gold Premium Compost’, integrating hot fermentation with biodynamic principles,  ​is also the founder ofGrounded’, where she makes a Full Spectrum Hemp Oil with the same thoughtful integrity & scientific rigger with which she does everything in her life. And also, to help with chronic pain, I got ‘Permission organic CBD cream’ (Molly Cronk gifted me one too!), & a tasty jar of ground hemp flowers in coconut oil made by Brian Wickert. Uriel Pharmacy, who has their headquarters in East Troy, also set up a booth with free samples, & a 20 per cent discount, which I took advantage of – buying a bag full of amazing products which I have been using for years with the best results.

Photo by Jodie Janovec

The evening ended with some bluegrass music & dancing with the Brew City Drifters, led by my old pal Chester, who I met many years ago during my Waldorf Pentathlon days. We started out with the hilarious game of musical chairs, (a tradition at these gatherings I was told) & then gleefully did some Contra Dancing led by Chet. So fun. The party continued late into the night at the dorm.

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Frank, Joseph, Jeff & Kelly, & Dottie – with a light root that Jeff & Kelly grew, which they gifted to the Elderberries ‘Have Seeds House’ in LA

02-02-2020 – On this magical Sunday morning (Brigid’s Day, Ground Hog’s Day, Candlemas…) we had an eye opening round table discussion on “peppering for pests & weeds” – a practice that was new to this city girl. During certain astrological alignments having to do with reproduction (Sun & Moon in Scorpio) invasive plants, insects, or the hides of pests like gophers or rats (or ground hogs, ha) are burnt, & the ash made into a prep that is spread around the periphery of the property, spiraling into the center. Folks shared their amazing stories of how powerful this humane method is, giving off the essence of the group soul, so that the pests feel that they don’t need to take up residence in the protected area. I loved hearing the farmers compare results & insights – a practice of collegial sharing of spiritual scientific research in true fellowship! And also a deep lesson in intention, & the patience to experiment over many years. 

Photo by Jen Silverman

The traditional closing circle led by Wali Via was a much anticipated event. We each received a packet with the combined BD prep samples that we had analyzed during the weekend. We connected with the 4 elements; & then we ‘stirred ourselves’ – moving in a spiral into the center, where we poured our individual packets into a ceremonial bowl, singing the chant from the Candlemas opening:

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Photo by Jen Silverman

Then a youth, Lydia Noble, & an elder Dewane Morgan, were chosen to carry the bowl with our combined offerings around the circle, where we were each gifted a portion to take home. At the culmination Wali Via got us singing ‘Halleluiah’ in 3 part harmony, a tradition that stirred our hearts.

After another stellar lunch, folks took a field trip to the Mandaamin Institute to experience the magic of Walter Goldstein’s research lab, where he works with the Spirit of Corn, to co-create & breed the best possible seed.

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It was hard to leave the gathering where so much fellowship was fostered, to travel back to the City by the Lake. But the good will is potentizing in me, & will continue to grow & shine forth like the warmth & light of the Sun.

Photo by Jen Silverman

Lloyd Nelson, who I felt a deep connection with, gifted me his potent BD 501 & BD 500(X) which we will stir & make into a prep along with the mixed silica prep we all received at the closing, on Easter Sunday during our Song Trail, as part of Our Karma and Anthroposophic Psychology, Easter-Tide Retreat.

Collage by Hazel Archer-Ginsberg

We will spread this healing elixir by the Great Inland Sea of Chicago & the Rudolf Steiner Branch, in Lincoln Sq. which will connect us here in the Heart-land to the heart-beat of the Fellowship – all those amazing human beings putting Anthroposophy into practice, shoring up the Foundation Stone, to ensure that our Earth & Every Human Heart Becomes a Sun.

Photo by Jen Silverman

I have to say, these folks really won my heart. I feel as if I have finally found ‘my people’!

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Watch out Chicago – I am so fired up that I am going to start a local chapter of the Merry Prep-sters = a BD guerrilla group – like a flash mob, spreading healing preps in urban settings! Come join me, as we enact the New Mysteries – to Renew the Earth & set the Human Being Free – practicing with Love, the teachings of Rudolph Steiner’s “Spiritual Foundations for the Renewal of Agriculture” (referred to as the ag. course) in all aspects of modern life!



Here’s a blast from the past: ~hag Bringing in the Celtic Triple Goddess Brigid to The Theosophical Society in 2017

And here is a call from the future: New Music by Ultra-Violet Archer:

New Music by UVA


The Karma Project – The Karma of Anthroposophy
February 5, 2019 – 7:15 pm CST (8:15 pm EST)
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Now the fact that karma has united a very wide range of different souls in the anthroposophical movement, from such varying antecedents and prior circumstances, makes this movement into a Michael movement in the true sense — a movement which truly renews Christianity.  This lies in the karma of the anthroposophical movement.  But it also lies in the karma of many individuals who sincerely enter the Anthroposophical Society.  It is the particular task of the anthroposophical movement to carry into the world this Michael impetus, which can be grasped and realized more specifically in this way.  many signs and reminders of this impetus can still be found here on earth today, for instance when one sees the wonderful play of nature around the ruins of Arthur’s castle.  As the centuries pass this impetus must increasingly enter civilization if the latter is not to degenerate entirely.”

~Rudolf Steiner, The Karma of AnthroposophyChapter 10Christ of the Elements, Christ in the Heart”, Torquay, 21 August, 1924 … focus of the February 5 meeting.

The Central Regional Council of the Anthroposophical Society in America invites you to join our ongoing  study conversation.  The study has been divided among four volunteers who will summarize their section to rebuild it as a foundation for our conversation. Please familiarize yourself with the lecture if possible so you will feel comfortable sharing your reflections and thoughts with the group.

This collection of lectures has been republished by Rudolf Steiner Press under the title: “The Karma of Anthroposophy.”  These lectures corresponds to GA 237, and were included in the series titled “Karmic Relationships“, Volume III, published in English by Rudolf Steiner Press in 1977.

This will be a “Zoom” conference call allowing us an opportunity to see one another while conversing (or audio only if you prefer).  To connect to the audio/video-conference:
Option 1.  Click link below if you wish to connect through your computer (a headset is recommended)
Option 2.  Call in using your telephone.
United States: +1 669 900 6833  or +1 646 558 8656
Access Code: 583-606-003
Option 3. You can use a combination of Options 1 and 2 (computer and phone). If you use the phone, please turn off the audio on your computer to prevent audio feedback.

Please join us!Agenda for our Study Call

7:15  Welcome and Introductions        
7:18  Verse
7:25  Study led by five volunteers
Note: CRC team will ID volunteers
          Laura – pp 134 – 137
          Christine – pp 138 – 141
          Stefano – pp 142 – 145
          Chris – pp 146 – 149
8:05  Conversation
8:25  Identify volunteers for our next study call: March 4
8:28  Close with verse


Karma and Anthroposophic Psychology — an Easter-Tide RetreatMaundy Thursday 9 April 2020 Noon thru Easter Sunday at 3 pm
Rudolf Steiner Branch 4249 N. Lincoln Ave. Chicago, IL AAP: James A. Dyson, M.D., Roberta Nelson, Ph.D., and David Tresemer, Ph.D. with Susan Overhauser, Ph.D. CRC: Marianne Fieber, Alberto Loya, Hazel Archer-Ginsberg, David Howerton, Lisa Dalton – Eurythmist: Mary RuudA popular view of karma is cause and effect or tit-for-tat. Karma, however, is so much more complex, interesting, and important. The soul work of karma has to do with the unfolding of our individuality through the elements, through the ethers, and very much through relationships.Rudolf Steiner named his core mission as bringing karma and reincarnation to the West; his teachings deserve interpretation and practical enlivening. The Central Regional Council has been exploring this theme for many months. Anthroposophic Psychology gives a unique contribution to the soul work of karma. For this conference the CRC is partnering with the Association for Anthroposophic Psychology (AAP of North America) to present ideas and experiences concerning karma—and how it impacts upon personal psychology.Conference Fees (includes 1 meal per day & art supplies):$190 Supporter Level$140 Standard Rate$60 Youth Rate (Age 35 and under)Limited scholarships available. Click here to apply.Tentative Schedule (subject to change) *Thursday April 9Noon: Registration & Group Lunch (provided)2:00-3:15 Welcome and ArtActs (Interactive Artistic Activity)3:30-5:30 Star Wisdom and Karma – David Tresemer, Ph.D.5:30-7:00 Dinner (on your own)7:00-9:00 (Evening Presentation) “The Karma Exercises” – Susan Overhauser, Ph.D. *Friday April 109-10:15 ArtActs10:30-12:30 Living into Karma—through the Senses —James A. Dyson, MD.12:30-2:00 Lunch (on your own)2:00-3:15 ArtActs3:30-5:30 How to Find the Self in a Sea of Karma – Roberta Nelson, Ph.D. This is part 1 of a deep inquiry into finding one’s self.5:30-7:00 Group Dinner (provided)7:00-9:00 Unfolding the Enigma of the Saturn path — James A. Dyson, MD.*Saturday April 119-10:15 ArtActs10:30-12:30 How to Find the Self in a Sea of Karma – Roberta Nelson, Ph.D. This is part 2 of a deep inquiry into finding one’s self.12:30-2:00 Lunch (on your own)2:00-3:15 ArtActs3:30-5:30 The Gesture of Karma – David Tresemer, Ph.D. Guest to this presentation will be Lisa Loving Dalton.5:30-7:00 Group Dinner (provided)7:00-9:00 PAGEANT: ‘Know Thyself’ by Hazel Archer-Ginsberg, the CRC, and consultant Margot Hodgson, LPC*Sunday April 12Easter Sunrise Songtrail at the Lake with Marianne FieberAt the Christian Community 2135 W. Wilson Ave · Chicago, Il 606259:30 Children’s Stories10:00 Children’s Service10:30 Adult Easter Service11:30 Potluck Feast12:30 LEADING THOUGHTS: Christ as Lord of Karma—how do I access this in terms of my personal psychology? – James Dyson, MD.1:30 Gathering experiences and reflections.2:30 CRC business3:00 ClosingCRC: Marianne Fieber, Alberto Loya, Hazel Archer-Ginsberg, David Howerton, Lisa DaltonAAP:James A. Dyson, MD, Senior Faculty, Assoc. for Anthroposophic Psychology (AAP), North America; Faculty Member, English International Training in Anthroposophic MedicineRoberta Nelson, Ph.D., licensed addiction and clinical counselor; Faculty Chair for Assoc. for Anthroposophic Psychology (AAP), North America. Contributor to The Counselor … as if Soul and Spirit Matter.Susan Overhauser, Ph.D., licensed psychologist, California; Associate Presenter for Assoc. for Anthroposophic Psychology (AAP), North America.David Tresemer, Ph.D., President, Assoc. for Anthroposophic Psychology. Editor and contributor, The Counselor … as if Soul and Spirit Matter; editor, Slow Counseling; column in Lilipoh for the last seven years. Author of Star Wisdom & Rudolf Steiner.About AAP: The foundation course in the Association for Anthroposophic Psychology (AAP) is a three-year (three times a year) training, starting up again in April 2021. See www.AnthroposophicPsychology.org P.O. Box 2180, Boulder, Colorado 80306E: Admin@AnthroposophicPsychology.org – Web: AnthroposophicPsychology.org

The Sacred Gateway: Conscious Living, Conscious Dying, and the Journey Beyond 2020

04/16/2020 – 2:00 PM – 04/19/2020 -1:00 PM PT


April 16 – 19, 2020
Detroit Waldorf School, Detroit, MI

  • Bring a new consciousness to your own life and death
  • Support those who are crossing and who have crossed over 
  • Expand your practice and knowledge of working with the dying

Through interactive workshops, triad sharing, keynote discussions with Rev. Patrick Kennedy, Sandra LaGrega and Jennifer Fox, Dr. Melinda Toney, and Hazel Archer-Ginsberg,  and more, as well as experiential and artistic activities, we will consciously explore the spiritual and practical aspect of human life and death. 

Conference Fees:

  • $280 Supporter Level
  • $195 Standard ASA Member Rate
  • $215 Non-Member Rate 
  • $60 Youth Rate (Age 35 and under)

Limited scholarships available. Click here to apply.

Click Here to Join the ASA!

Conference Schedule 
(Note: Workshops Subject to Additions/Minor Changes)

Pre-conference Activities: 

Thursday, April 16  

2 pm Tour of Brightmoor Maker’s Space  

4 pm  Screening of short film The Art of Natural Death Care  Detroit Waldorf School Auditorium- By Donation  

7pm Screening of a Will For The Woods Detroit Waldorf School Auditorium- Open to the public!  $10 Suggested Donation 

Friday, April 17

10:00-1:00p Registration Opens 
10:00-12:00p Choose from two pre-conference activities at the Detroit Waldorf School 

  • Exploring the Beauty of home funerals and green burial: Photo essay and Q&A with Merilynne Rush, MS, End-of-Life Doula Trainer and Home Funeral Guide (Open to the public. Donation accepted at the door) 
  • The Story of Detroit: A Walking Songtrail (Meet in the school playground. Approx. two mile walk)

12:00p Bag Lunch (For Purchase) 
1:00p  Conference Opening 
1:45-3:00p  Keynote Discussion with Rev. Patrick Kennedy: Befriending Death 
3:00-3:30p Break
3:30-5:00p  Three-Day Themed Workshops (Chosen on site. Choose one theme and attend Friday, Saturday, and Sunday) ALL WORKSHOPS CHOSEN ON SITE  
Fuller descriptions coming soon! 

  • From Loss to Connection Through the Arts: Reading, Writing and Drawing with Marianne Dietzel and Maureen Flannery
    Together we will invite our loved ones across the threshold to join us in experiencing practices thet connect and heal. We will read to the dead, write prose and poetry, and draw from gestures of nature.

5:30-6:30 Choose: Eurythmy (Movement), Singing, or Poetry 
6:30 Evening Appetizer Reception (Included in registration fee) 
7:30-9:00 Evening Performance 

Saturday April 18 – All workshops chosen on site/Saturday Lunch and Dinner for purchase 

8:00 Coffee/Tea/Breakfast Snacks (Included in Regisration Fee) 
8:30-9:15 Choose: Eurythmy (Movement), Singing, or Poetry 
9:30-11:00 Three-Day Themed Workshops   
11:00-11:30 Break
11:30-12:30 Vigil Room Experience  
12:30 – 2:00  Lunch and Table Conversations 

2:15 – 3:45 Topic Workshops
    Workshop Choices Coming Soon! 

3:45-4:15 Break

4:15-5:45 Story Space: Death & Healing 

5:45-7:00 Dinner With Your Dinner Table Groups 

7:30-9:00 Evening Performance with Sarah Putnam: Little Gidding by TS Elliot followed by Memento Mori Ritual  

Sunday, April 19 – All workshops chosen on site

8:00 Coffee/Tea/Breakfast Snacks (Included in Registration Fee) 

8:30-9:15 Choose: Eurythmy (Movement), Singing, or Poetry 

9:30 – 11:00 Three Day Themed Workshops 

11:30-1:00 Green Burial Ceremony and Closing 

Full conference: 
$280 Supporter (This level provides scholarships for other attendees!)
$195 Standard ASA Member Rate/$215 Non-Member Rate/$60 Youth 

Please Note: Cancellation fee of $35 before April 9. No refunds after April 10. 

**Scholarship applications open. Click here to complete your application by March 30!** 
We will get back to you by either March 15th or 30th, depending upon your application date. 

Transportation and Lodging 

The nearest aiport is the Detroit Metro airport, which is 30 minutes away. Please take Uber/Lyft/Taxi to our site. 
Click here for a general transportation FAQ.

Rooms reserved at the following: 

Comfort Inn Detroit at 1999 E Jefferson Ave has a block of rooms available for us. Please go to this link for the $124.00 nightly rate. Breakfast is included, as well as shuttle rides to and from the Detroit Waldorf School. You can also call 313-567-8888 and say that you are with the Sacred Gateway group. 

Want to share a ride or room? You can post your request or respond to requests at our shared room/ride board here. 

Festivals for the Dead. Then & Now. Renew, or Create Your Own Tradition.

with Hazel Archer-Ginsberg – Founder of Reverse Ritual Understanding Anthroposophy through the Rhythms of the Year. Essayist, Lecturer, Poet, Trans-denominational Minister, ‘Anthroposopher’, working as the Festivals Coordinator & Council Member of the Chicago Rudolf Steiner Branch, The Traveling Speakers Program, & the Central Regional Council of the Anthroposophical Society.


~Vitae Sophia~ A Whitsun Festival of United Soul Endeavor

Northeastern Tour May 2020

For more info. Contact Deb Abrahams-Dematte deb@anthroposophy.org

Eurythmy: AUM = A – I stand for myself, U- I stand for humanity, M – I stand for Life

Social Sculpture: Steiner’s ‘Blue Dot Exercise’- Through Art, the bridge between science & spirit, we warm the ‘I’, to open the heart, in support of healthy community.

What are my gifts-What are my tools? How can I place them in right relationship within the social realm? How can I hone them to strengthen and enhance the world?

Enter the Labyrinth of Vitae Sophia – Human hearts, once warmed, can rise up to meet the source of wisdom, like flowers turning toward the sun.  

Living into the Foundation Stone of Love  – How can we take our individual Inner Whitsun & expand it, into what Steiner calls the “World Festival of Knowledge” a path leading from ‘Sprit Recollection’, to ‘Sprit Sensing’, to ‘Sprit Beholding’?

Hazel Archer-Ginsberg – Founder of Reverse Ritual Understanding Anthroposophy through the Rhythms of the Year. Essayist, Lecturer, Poet, Trans-denominational Minister, ‘Anthroposopher’, working as the Festivals Coordinator & Council Member of the Chicago Rudolf Steiner Branch, The Traveling Speakers Program, & the Central Regional Council of the Anthroposophical Society.

Whitsun 2020 Vitae Sophia

as part of the tour 

3 June 2020 – a Round Table Discussion 7 pm – 9 pm on ‘The Sophia’ with John Bloom, Joan Sleigh, Hazel Archer-Ginsberg & Carrie Schuchardt  at The House of Peace in Ipswich, MA. 

2 thoughts on “Fellowship

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