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Showing posts from 2022

What I Love About Being a Volunteer - Tony Vito

I have been a musician with the Center since 2006. During this time, I have learned to truly face myself, and start again with a clean slate and open mind. There have been times when my Center has loved, understood, and forgiven me when I could not. I have found my deepest, most meaningful friendships here; this place of Hope and Joy that holds my Soul in loving arms. Musically, the Center had taught me about service and discipline, things I was lacking as a musician. Working with our music director Chris through the years has been a fantastic, rewarding journey, and a conduit to remembering who I am. I'm so glad I found a home for my Mind, Heart, and Soul. -Tony Vito

What I Love About Being a Volunteer - Trish Watkins

I have been volunteering at the Center for as long as I have been attending, some 17 or 18 years, and have participated in many different positions. I do this because I get a lift from being  there; it's always a good vibe and something  I truly relish.  Volunteering is such a reciprocal activity, a true giving and receiving experience. I think it will always be a priority for me.  -Trish Watkins

What I Love About Being a Volunteer - Kate Luna

I was raised on volunteering. At 8 years old, my dad enlisted me to take the elderly, blind nuns from the local convent shopping for their groceries. I had to get them safely back and forth on NYC streets, count their change and make sure I got the EXACT crackers they wanted. I learned self-reliance, compassion and patience. From that point on through high school, college and adult life, I volunteered in a wide range of roles and organizations.It was a given… a way to help others, show that I care and make a difference. After several years of attending the Center, I joined the newly formed Welcoming Team and found my sweet spot. Before Covid, I loved being at the front door greeting and engaging with our congregants. As we maneuvered quickly into online services, I was monitoring the chat along with fellow Welcoming Teammates as we did our best to bring that sense of connection to this new world of “Zoom Church”. When we began in-person Sunday services, I was happily that masked face o

What I Love About Being a Volunteer - Peggy Webber

Volunteering means a way to connect with people while sharing a task, different from what I do in my daily routine. I’m learning a new task and new ways to interact. I have volunteered as an usher, at tables in the social hall, and now as one of the facilitators in The Thriver’s Group, Full Circle, and a Sunday Evening Conversations. In each of these chosen positions my connections with people strengthen. By volunteering at our Center I practice what I learn from Science of Mind; Love, Oneness and Inclusivity! My life is more meaningful because I volunteer! -Peggy Webber

What I Love About Being a Volunteer - Donna Hoover

I love volunteering at CSLSR because it is a great way to be in the flow of Circulation.   I receive a lot from the Center, including sweet appreciation from staff for what I do.  It makes me want to give more.  I love feeling like an active part of CSLSR, plus there is always something fun to do!    -Donna Hoover

What I Love About Being a Volunteer - Sue Sandholm

Volunteering at Stepping Stones Books and Gifts is the most joyful SEVA I have done at the Center.  As a member for over 14 years, I have participated in several volunteer positions, but creating a “happy” place where congregants can support our Center by shopping, visiting, and gleaning ideas for their spiritual practices has been the greatest gift for me. It is truly a blessing to volunteer at our bookstore!   -Sue Sandholm

What I Love About Being a Volunteer - Lili Escovedo

I love volunteering for our beautiful Center for the connection and community.  Sacred service is such a wonderful way to bring our teaching into the world and make friends doing it! -Lili Escovedo

What I Love About Being a Volunteer - Krista McAtee

There are many reasons and ways that I love to volunteer at the center and all of them have to do with spreading Love, practicing Joy, expressing my true Nature and mirroring back the Divine around me in all of Its diverse forms.  -Krista McAtee

What I Love About Being a Volunteer - Patty Byrne

I volunteer because I want to be of service and hopefully, uplift someone. Something almost magical happens each time I volunteer - I GET SO MUCH OUT OF IT. I am the one who gets uplifted. It feels good. I get to meet other volunteers, who often become friends. There is a sense of community. There is ๐Ÿ’•.  I volunteer with five wonderful Prayer Practitioners in the Jail Ministry (I am totally uplifted from each visit I make). I offer After-Service Prayer. I facilitate a Circle for Spiritual Connection group. -Patty Byrne

What I Love About Being a Volunteer - Nancy Reynolds

Volunteering at the Center is what made this place truly my home. It's how I have gotten to know so many amazing people, and it's given me a way to share my enthusiasm and talents. Before I volunteered, I hardly knew anyone, and I would just come on Sundays, enjoy the service, and leave. Now that I know people, this is my place! This is where I can be myself and contribute to something I love and believe in.

What I Love About Being a Volunteer - Stephanie Rush

I volunteer at our Center because it is Love in action. I love people, our center, being involved, making a difference, empowering others and myself, and being connected to kind, caring, open-minded people that listen, share, love and appreciate people, life and all of creation. I truly believe in our global vision and I deeply want to be a part of making it come true. I cannot think of a better place to volunteer. Thank you all for this incredible life opportunity! Love, Steph

What I Love About Being a Volunteer - Alicia Carroll

"When asked what I love about volunteering at the Center for Spiritual Living Santa Rosa, what comes to mind first is that just being at the Center feeds my soul. Being in community and attending services at the Center is a very big part of my spiritual practice. When you add in volunteering...well it is like icing on the cake so to speak, or an extra helping of love. I have had the opportunity and experience of being a Board of Trustee, assisting with small and large events, and working (now managing) the bookstore among other adventures. It has all given me a sense of purpose in my retired years, a feeling of belonging to a loving community outside of my family and knowing that I am doing a little part in making the world a better place for all. I highly recommend it to feed your soul." -Alicia Carroll

What I Love About Being a Volunteer - Julia McClung

"My Seva in Steppingstones Bookstore and in serving at special events is a sweet treasure in my life.  My Seva is a thrilling, open-hearted connection to the members of our community. My Seva gives me the chance to experience a joyous vibration in the flow of energy, ideas and creativity as we teach and learn from one-another--always sharing beginner's mind at all the steps in our spiritual journeys. CSLSR is my spiritual home, and my Seva makes me a full member." -Julia McClung

What I Love About Being a Volunteer - Steve DeLap

 "I love being a volunteer at the Santa Rosa Center for Spiritual Living because not only is it like a second family for me, it also gives me a chance to practice and contribute some of my video skills in a useful and positive way and do my part in creating a world that works for everyone. I am very thankful for this opportunity." With Love,  Steve DeLap

What I Love About Being a Volunteer - Jerry Huffaker

 "From the very first time I stepped into the Sanctuary 24 years ago (the choir was wearing Hawaiian shirts and singing a Beach Boys song), I knew, right then, in my heart, that I had found my spiritual home. With CSLSR being such a wonderful and engaging home, I have always wanted to give back by volunteering. It is a wonderful way to meet others and to give back to our community. The Center has spiritually supported my wife Patricia and I, and I feel gratitude each time I volunteer." -Jerry Huffaker

What I Love About Being a Volunteer - Bette Smith

"I love volunteering at the Center because I get so much in return. I meet new and interesting people and connect with people I haven’t seen in years. I like working behind the scenes so I help Allan Yeager with some parts of the website which is a job I can do from home. I work in the bookstore where I’m surrounded by beautiful items for sale. And I love teaching classes because I have benefited so much from all the classes I’ve taken.  Coming to the Center for over twenty five years has changed my life. I love giving back my beloved Center that has fed me and helped me grow." -Bette Smith

What I Love About Being a Volunteer - Rebecca Mae Edwards

  "Volunteering at the Center gives me the opportunity to joyfully connect with others while supporting the spiritual home that feeds me in so many ways." -Rebecca Mae Edwards 

What I Love About Being a Volunteer - Karen Potts

"Volunteering at the Center for Spiritual Living brings me joy. When I first started attending regularly several years ago I cried during each service.  Spirit was guiding me to overcome my grief of losing so many in a short amount of time. The more events and classes I became involved in, the more I woke up to my real purpose. Being a library volunteer has placed me in my element of joy being surrounded by the wisdom handed down through the ages. It brings a smile to my face and love in my heart to be of real service. Thank you for the opportunity to grow my soul. And So It Is" -Karen Potts

What I Love About Being a Volunteer - Char Meredith

"Hello! I’m Char๐ŸŒŸ, a NorCal southern gal. I’ve recently found CSL to be my spiritual home. During my first visit, one of the most impactful first impressions I experienced was the bookstore because it captures the true religious inclusivity essence of CSL and the One belief. While browsing the bookstore I have found many important spiritual tools that have helped guide me to be home with my soul. I love volunteering with the great team in the bookstore and all the blessings I receive connecting with each kindred soul at the center. I’ll also be volunteering as a greeter. It’s an honor to serve such a wonderful community."  -Char

What I Love About Being a Volunteer - Mary Ann Granieri

"I’ve always loved using my talents to contribute in some way to my community. It brings me a sense of satisfaction and well-being to help create, nurture, and sustain a healthy spiritual community that in turn supports and sustains so many others, individually as well as those in our local and global communities. Volunteering at the Center has allowed me to meet new people in a way that’s been easy and fun. A spirit of camaraderie easily develops as we collaborate on a common goal. I’ve developed dear friendships with some of the people I’ve met volunteering. It’s also created an opportunity to work with and get to know many of the talented and hard-working staff and ministers who are so dedicated to this Center. My appreciation for CSLSR and for everyone who contributes to it has grown immensely as I’ve glimpsed a bit of what goes on behind the scenes. As I’ve been able to contribute and create by volunteering, I’ve also received much. I feel truly seen, valued, and appreciated.

What I Love About Being a Volunteer - Julie Myers

"Aloha- My name is Julie Myers. I love the Center for Spiritual Living Santa Rosa and I show my love by being a volunteer.  The Center has provided me with guidance and love to live a full, happy fulfilled spiritual life.   I started attending services in 2018 and became a member in 2019.  I wanted more than one day a week to increase my newfound spiritual practice.  Classes, special events and recommended books led to volunteering.  Pre-pandemic I ushered at the services, worked landscape maintenance, helped set-up special events, addressed mass mailers and briefly joined the Project Sleep Warm, sewing sleeping bags (with a darling teddy bear made by other volunteers nestled on each bag) for women and children in shelters.   Since the Center re-opened I have continued as a Welcome Team Greeter and my favorite volunteer experience, helping in the Stepping Stones Books and Gifts Store.  Volunteer opportunities abound here at CSLSR.  So many wonderful 'jobs' to choose from. 

What I Love About Being a Volunteer - Jan Svoboda

"What I love so much about volunteering at the Center is that I meet the most wonderful people. I regularly pray with congregants after service and meet such heart-centered people wanting to change something or have something new in their lives. I am honored to hear their request and offer them a prayer based in Love and in the belief that their lives can change for the better. What a joy it is to pray with the genuine belief that Spirit is all around us all of the time. In this truth, all good things can be! I also offer opportunities for deeper spiritual coaching sessions on Zoom upon request." -Jan Svoboda

What I Love About Being a Volunteer - Michele Taylor

"I enjoy volunteering because it makes me feel good! To feel truly appreciated when I volunteer at the bookstore or be a Sunday morning greeter, gives a sense of belonging. I am a newer member and it allows me to get to know more folks, connect with them and make friends. I always feel happy after helping by volunteering! I want to branch out and do more in the future." Michele Taylor

What I Love About Being a Volunteer - Kathryn Jurik

"I’ve been here at the Center for a while. I’ve been doing my kind of praying/playing in this building for at least 45 years. I skated here almost nightly up until a month or so before my first was born. But that’s not why I volunteer. I volunteer for lots of reasons, and the reasons have changed through the years. I’m just going to make a list of some of my motivations for volunteering. 1.     To get out of the house 2.     To be with positive people 3.     Because no one would pay me to do what I want to do 4.     I’ve volunteered because I’ve thought I was the only person who could do the job ‘right’ 5.     I volunteer because I get to be creative 6.     I volunteer because I have time and I like to contribute 7.     Doing is one of my specialties 8.     Planning is another one 9.     I have achieved all I need through the grace of others going beyond their ‘paid employment’ to offer me a hand when I was down, so now I feel like I have a moral obligation to extend my hand and h

What I Love About Being a Volunteer - Juanita Ortegon

  "The Center for Spiritual Living Santa Rosa is my spiritual home. I have learned so much about living from Love and who I am in my connection to the Living Spirit, that I desire to give back in ways that feed my soul. I am currently involved in the Sacred Services of pouring coffee and greeting our absolutely wonderful and loving congregants. Many of you may know me from these two ways of interacting with everyone. It gives me so much joy. It makes my heart sing. I am so grateful for the opportunity to serve." Juanita Ortegon

What I Love About Being a Volunteer - David Hartranft

"When the Center finally reopened last year, it was such a joy to be able to attend live services again! One Sunday morning there was a call for volunteers for the video team, and I immediately knew this was a perfect way for an introverted, slightly nerdy technophile like me to serve. There was some trepidation at first, since my last experience with video production was decades ago, but that all melted away when I met the other team members, who welcomed me warmly and trained me on our equipment. I have come to enjoy all aspects of the job, from operating a camera to directing, and am grateful to be part of the amazing team upstairs. It is a privilege to have this bird’s eye view of the service as it all comes together, starting with the early morning band rehearsals, when the camera people choose the best shots and the director makes preliminary decisions about the live flow. A few minutes before nine, the anticipation builds as the sanctuary begins to fill with people. The mom

Featured Volunteers: The CSLSR Jail Ministry

(The CSLSR Jail Ministry Team, from left to right:  Susan Bennett, Krista McAtee, Tamarya Hulme, Rosalie Sulgit-Shay, Pat Bryne, Kathleen Kearney) The CSLSR Jail Ministry Team visits people in the Sonoma County jail, usually making 50 visits each month, and often holds weekly online classes with 6-8 people. Inmates commonly spend twenty-three hours a day in their room, and some have been waiting their trial for up to four years. The Jail Ministry team shares spiritual tools, such as prayer, forgiveness, and what it means to live a heart-centered life. Listening is a big part of their work since oftentimes, the inmates simply need someone they can talk to who they trust.  This Ministry makes a hugely positive impact in the day to day lives of those who they serve. Here is some of the feedback they've received from inmates: "There is a lot of anger, worry, pain and suffering here in the jail.  When you guys stop what you are doing in your life and visit, you bring something posi

What I Love About Being a Volunteer - Sue Robson

  "I love serving the Center for Spiritual Living, Santa Rosa through online prayer support. As a Practitioner in this community, I thoroughly enjoy sitting with others via phone or zoom (or even Facebook Messenger) and holding them in love and prayer as they navigate decisions or situations in their life. Going to prayer with or for someone is an honor and a joy and I am grateful to be available in this way.  During 2020, I moved physically from Santa Rosa to Brookings, OR. But due to the pandemic, I was able to step in and be there via zoom as a support to our Practitioner body and our congregants. As we edge out of the pandemic, I am still here and available for those who may need prayer or spiritual coaching via zoom or phone for those who may not be at the Center physically." With Love and a Grateful Heart,  Sue Robson, RScP

What I Love About Being a Volunteer - Chris Kelly

  "I enjoy volunteering at CSLSR because it allows me to be of service and to create community, as I am new.  I feel this is my home. I volunteer for the coffee service." Chris Kelly

What I Love About Being a Volunteer - Linda O'Rear

  "Volunteering on the Giving Intention Team is such a joy! We are an unstoppable bunch...even during the pandemic we zoomed our way through all our tasks. Our team loves thinking up ways to thank our beautiful community for all the love they give us in so many ways. It's a delight to consider our nonprofit partners and all the good they do in the world. It is so easy for me to give to our Center when I personally get so much in return." Linda O'Rear

What I Love About Being a Volunteer - Greg Summers

  "I am very grateful to put my IT background to use in assisting with the production of the live stream on Sunday.  Jeff Basham has been very patient and generous with his time in showing me the ropes.  The live stream is a wonderful option to enable people to remain connected with the Center if they are traveling, have moved, or even if they don't quite feel ready to come back in person. It's also been a wonderful educational opportunity to see how the service all comes together behind the scenes. It takes many hands and teamwork to make it happen.  Interestingly enough, it's the live stream that got me introduced to the center when we started watching in 2020. Since becoming an official member this year, jumping in and volunteering has been a great way to meet and connect with other members, volunteers, and staff. The center has provided a sense of peace for me and my family and the time I spend there in the congregation and as a volunteer deepens and enhances that

What I Love About Being a Volunteer - Bruce Gatta

  "I love volunteering at the Center every Sunday, doing setup, teardown, and counting congregants…it’s been satisfying seeing our numbers increase since we’ve returned! I recently started greeting congregants, which is especially rewarding. I also like picking up the trash and making our Center look clean and beautiful! Doing this makes me truly happy. I love that I have a small part in the making of the Sunday Services. The Service gives me a positive start to every week, and I find that my part in this Spiritual Circulation is a great blessing." Bruce Gatta

What I Love About Being a Volunteer - Dennis O'Rear

  "I am a retired engineer. In my career I’ve had the opportunity to use my creativity. I appreciate the Center for its non-traditional approach to spirituality and its embrace of creativity.  Spirituality is open at the top. I enjoy volunteering for events at the Center and have done so for six years. Not only is volunteering a way of demonstrating my support, it gives me the opportunity to work alongside many other like-minded people." Dennis O'Rear

What I Love About Being a Volunteer - Jan Davis

  "The Center for Spiritual Living transformed my life over the years, and the tools I have learned there continue to support me everyday. So I feel blessed to be able to support my spiritual home by volunteering my time and talent." Jan Davis

What I Love About Being a Volunteer - Olivia Kinzler

"I volunteer because it's the right thing to give back to a community that is giving me so much. As a former member of the OneHeartChoir, a quilter in the Center's Sleep Warm Project, and kitchen cook for one of our longtime organizations that the Center for Spiritual Living sponsors financially, The Living Room, I receive as much, if not more than I give. Now, being a Volunteer Welcome Team member allows me to greet people at the door and to welcome them in. As a person of color, hopefully I can be an example of a spiritual community becoming more and more diverse. I love it spiritual home, CSL Santa Rosa!" Olivia Kinzler

What I Love About Being a Volunteer - Bari Barella

"I started coming to the Center in 2017 and just became a member this year. I have been so grateful for the Center in my life and now that I am pretty much retired, I wanted to give back in some way.  I travel to SoCal to see my grandsons at least once a month so the perfect volunteer opportunity for me is pulling weeds, gardening, cleaning and beautifying the Center grounds.  Looking forward to connecting with more people at the Center in the future." Bari Barella

What I Love About Being a Volunteer - Michael Seymour

"I love the Center for Spiritual Living; it is not just a place but a family. The work the Center does, and the message it sends out are vital for these times and future generations. Volunteering is not only one of our pillars but is a way to help our center thrive.  I enjoy the connection with the people at the center and it's my small way of contributing. With spirit in your heart, it doesn't even seem like work.  So if you are not volunteering now, make the connection, it feels so good." Boundless blessings! Michael Seymour

What I Love About Being a Volunteer - Jennifer Mann, RScP

"Here I am filming one of my many home videos during lockdown that was used in online church for Announcements. I love hosting, emceeing Events and praying from the platform as a happy volunteer. I'm so grateful that we're back Live so I can feel the homey vibes in the sanctuary and social hall." Jennifer Mann, RScPE

AIDS/LifeCycle 2022

 Photos by the CSLSR AIDS/LifeCycle Team Thank you to our volunteer cyclists for representing our community on an epic fundraising 454 miles ride.