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Caring for Common Ground

May 31, 2019 @ 6:00 pm - June 2, 2019 @ 4:00 pm


Education for Spiritually-Based Ecological Restoration

People from diverse religious (and non-religious) traditions and spiritual practices are invited to learn together how to do ecological restoration that helps to heal the land, and to share how their faith perspectives inform their environmental commitments. Join and become part of an interfaith restoration community of practice.

What is Caring for Common Ground?
Caring for Common Ground is an educational program convened by Holy Wisdom Monastery, in collaboration with the Earth Partnership (UW-Madison) program, to bring people of different faith and spiritual perspectives together around land care practices. We strive to create a supportive learning environment where people can share ideas about spirituality and ecology, learn tools to put their values into action and join others in a community of spiritually-based ecological restoration.

Caring for Common Ground participants are invited to participate in seasonal gatherings after the initial workshop, where members of past and current cohorts share knowledge, resources and fellowship.

Who Can Participate?
Anyone who wants to! We welcome participants who want to care for the earth and who want to learn and share with others. Participants do not need to belong to any religious or spiritual community. We have had participants who identify with one religious tradition, several religious traditions, varied spiritual practices and those who are non-religious. You do not need to have any experience in ecology, land care or religion—but those who do have experience in these areas are welcome too. We believe that everyone can contribute to and learn something from this experience.

What Will I Learn?
We encourage collaborative learning about ecology and spirituality (especially contemplative spirituality) and ecological restoration practices from site analysis to design to planting strategies. We learn through individual and group reflection, including journalling, art, dialogue and hands-on experiences in the field.

Workshop topics:

  • Concepts of ecological restoration, including hands-on skills for planning and implementing a restoration project
  • Activities for engaging others in ecological education and restoration practice
  • Individual reflection
  • Dialogue about intersections of faith and contemplative spirituality, ethics and environmental care

Time and Location
Holy Wisdom Monastery, 4200 County Road M, Middleton, WI
6:00-8:00 pm, Friday, May 31
9:00 am-7:00 pm, Saturday, June 1
11:00 am-4:00 pm, Sunday, June 2 (optional Sunday Assembly worship at the monastery from 9:00-10:00 am)

Registration is $95 per person (free for students), which includes dinner on Friday, breakfast, lunch and dinner on Saturday and brunch on Sunday. A limited number of scholarships are also available to non-students. Lodging at the monastery is optional, but not included in the registration fee. Please contact Amanda at aconway@benedictinewomen.org or 608-836-1631, x100 for lodging availability.

Registration closed.


What Do Past Participants Have to Say?

“Caring for Common Ground has so much to offer people of faith or from faith-based organizations on the topic of land restoration and environmental stewardship, from practical experience on how to plan a restoration project, learning more about plant selection and hands-on practice, all rooted in the premise that our faiths call us to do this work. This workshop sparked ideas for future projects at my organization and also restore m in the process.”


“Caring for Common Ground has become my spiritual practice support group. It has made my life more meaningful.”


“Caring for Common Ground workshop was an uplifting, loving educational development—and even more so—spiritual development experience that prepares people to enact their values more effectively.”


Holy Wisdom Monastery*
4200 County Road M
Middleton, WI 53562 United States


Greg Armstrong
608-836-1631, x123

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Contact Info

Holy Wisdom Monastery
4200 County Road M
Middleton WI 53562
608-836-1631, x100
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