The Luther crew has arrived and is settling in quite well. After hours and hours and hours and hours on the train, we got off in dark Wenatchee, boarded a bus, and arrived in less dark Chelan at the late hour of 7:00am. Uffda. Fluffy, horizontal sleeping spaces awaited us and rested us up for the big Monday: Holden.
In my last blog post, I briefly mentioned the mountain village we will be inhabiting for the month, but possibly left readers still wondering. Here's my best: Holden is a Lutheran retreat center where guests can take classes, participate in activities and crafts, and be in a community of worship. It is rooted around a Lutheran tradition where the vision is the love of God making new the Church and world through the cross of Christ.
On one hand, there's the logistics and the foundation of Holden. Surely, if you look on the website or in a pamphlet, this is what you might find. I am lucky enough to get a chance to dig a little deeper by talking to the people who live, breathe, and operate this place. I had conversations with volunteers and long-term staff and here's a little bit of what they said:
Holden Village is a place of intentional community, but also an ever-changing one. The permanence is in the mountains overlooking the village and the physical buildings for people to come and go. However, it ceases to be the same place, as the people coming in and out influence the attitudes, conversations, and leadership. This temporary, transitional nature allows for appreciation in the present and an understanding for ongoing conversations to best follow the vision of Holden. Especially in today's abnormal state as a mine reclamation site (which you will certainly read about!), striking a pragmatic balance and remaining steadfast to Holden's tradition is a process that requires patience and co-operation.
Holden is also a place of God with heavenly music and great people. Getting away from the hustle and bustle allows time to unplug and find what's important to you as a human being. It provides tools to use for the real world and has a healing sense to it. Holden is a place of learning, living, and growing.
So that's what I learned by listening but I am absolutely still trying to figure it out on my own. Welcome to Holden, friends.