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Continuing Education

Sustaining the Courage to Serve: A Courage & Renewal® Seasonal Retreat Series

Date: 5:00pm PDT November 1, 2012 - 1:00pm July 20, 2013 Location: Menucha Retreat and Conference Center, 38711 E Historic Columbia Rvr, Corbett, OR

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Menucha Retreat and Conference Center, 38711 E Historic Columbia Rvr, Corbett, OR

Our Seasonal Retreat Series, which include four three-day retreats over the course of a year, are designed for those interested in deepening their experience of personal and professional renewal fostered by the Circle of Trust® approach—as described in Parker J. Palmer’s book A Hidden Wholeness: The Journey Toward an Undivided Life.

This series is intended for anyone who wants to live and work more wholeheartedly—including those in education, religious life, healthcare, law, philanthropy, and community organizing.

In a seasonal retreat series, you’ll meet with the same cohort of 16-30 people who gather for quarterly retreats of three days each over a period of one year. This gives you a trustworthy community of peers and a continuity of deep conversation.

In large-group, small-group and solitary settings, the retreats provide opportunities to:

• Explore practices that renew heart, mind, and spirit

• Reclaim authentic leadership that honors one’s gifts and acknowledges the power of limits

• Create a community of mutual respect and caring that welcomes the soul and honors diversity

• Participate in four Clearness Committees, a discernment process for reaching clarity around a decision (such as a life or career transition) by listening and asking insightful ”open and honest” questions

• Embody the Courage & Renewal principles and practices, which create safe space for exploring the connection between inner values and their vocation

• Bring back insights and experiment with new ways of leading in one’s own professional community

• Learn healthy ways to hold the tensions inherent in a life of service

Learn more about the Center for Courage and Renewal 

Download and share the information flier with all retreat series details (PDF)

Past participants are saying… 

“Courage and Renewal work is the most deeply meaningful educational experience I’ve ever had. Full of substance, affirmation, and light, it is life altering.”

“Courage and Renewal work revitalizes the lives of people in the serving professions. Over the years, many of us have been worn down. It gives us the opportunity to go back to the way we did it in the beginning. It helps us reawaken the love of what we do.”

“This program is incredibly respectful of the work of people in the serving professions. It has provided me with an opportunity to reflect on my work as a teacher in a space where others are doing the same.”

Retreat Series Details

Dates: Fall retreat: November 1-3, 2012;  Winter retreat: February 7-9, 2013; Spring retreat: April 11-13, 2013;  Summer retreat: July 18-20, 2013

Times:  Thursdays, 5 p.m. through Saturdays, 1 p.m.

Facilitators:  Jeff Creswell, Karen Noordhoff

Registration/Cost: Program fees, materials, meals and lodging for all four retreats: $2,400

Scholarships: A modest scholarship fund is available for clergy and communities of faith leaders. To apply for a scholarship, please e-mail John Fenner at

Register at 

About the Facilitators

Jeff Creswell and Karen Noordhoff each bring 12 years of experience as facilitators of Courage & Renewal events at the local and national level. They were prepared by the Center for Courage & Renewal under the guidance of Parker J. Palmer.

Jeff Creswell has been facilitating Courage & Renewal® retreats since 2000 for clergy and congregational leaders, educators and cross-professional groups. He was a classroom teacher in Portland, Oregon for 32 years, and is an educational consultant sharing the Scottish Storyline method with educators. He is a member of Trinity Episcopal Cathedral where he sings in the choir. He and his wife, Caryl, enjoy spending time with their blended family of eight children and three grandchildren.

Karen Noordhoff has been facilitating Courage & Renewal® since 2000 for clergy and congregational leaders, educators and cross-professional groups. She is also a professor at Portland State University in Portland, Oregon, with interests in spirituality and education and is a member of Trinity Episcopal Cathedral in Portland, Oregon, where she lives. In addition, she and her husband, David, spend time in central Oregon where they walk the labyrinth at their cabin in the high desert called “The Clearing.”

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