March 1 – 3

While 6th to 8th graders explore what it means to be comfortably uncomfortable in the ACC, we’ll create our own cozy space in Pitt Hall and share the ways we ground ourselves and our kids in a not-always friendly world.

More details to be added after New Years!

Julie Glynn returns again this year to co-facilitate with one of the youth program directors.

Nonviolent Communication: A Spiritual Practice and Act of Social Change  June 21-23, 2019

Friends are called to see that of God in each person and be peacemakers. These two convictions are intimately connected: If God is in each of us, how could we possibly wish to harm or hurt God--who is pure love? And it is this spiritual belief--and experience (via meeting for worship) that is the basis of Quaker commitment to social change: As there is that of God in each of us, each person must be treated with dignity, care and respect. Yet it’s not always easy to put these convictions into practice. Those around us---at home, work, and even in our meeting, can do or say things that we don’t like, disagree with, find hurtful, infuriating, or even plain wrong. So how do we in these moments reconnect with that of God in others and ourselves---and speak truth to power? During this weekend intensive training in compassionate Nonviolent Communication, we will learn practical skills to put Quaker principles into action: self-managing our own reactions, empathizing with others, and finding solutions that restore harmony, are in integrity with our values, and hold everyone’s needs with care. Highly interactive and including exercises, games, pair work, role play and music, the workshop will explore core practices of Nonviolent Communication as well more advanced practices such as protective use of force and how the very way we communicate each day can be a radical act of social change.

Recommended reading for this workshop: Connecting across Differences by Jane Connor and Dian Killian, Urban Empathy, by Dian Killian and Mark Badger, The Powers that Be, by Walter Wink

About the facilitator: Dian Killian, PhD, has been a Certified Trainer with the International Center for Nonviolent Communication for 12 years and has offered NVC training around the world. She is co-author of two well loved NVC books, Connecting across Differences: How to Connect with Anyone, Anywhere (in English and German) and Urban Empathy: True Life Adventures of Compassion on the Streets of New York. Based in Brooklyn, she teaches regularly at Kriplau, the 92nd St Y, the NY Open Center, and the Omega Institute and has worked with diverse organizations including Americorp, the UN Development Program, the Peace Alliance/Department of Peace campaign, NYU, and Cornell University. She is known for sharing NVC in a clear, down-to-earth and engaging way with humor and stories.

Special Event for the weekend: Empathy Songs and Stories

On Saturday evening, Dian will share music and stories with us. A champion mountain dulcimer performer and singer-songwriter, she has performed at the Philadelphia Folk Festival, People’s Voice Cafe, Rockwood Music Hall and many other venues. Come learn more about empathy via song!

Register at:        518-794-8811          This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Register by June 7, 2019: $295/adults; $200/ages 13-22; $220/commuter or camper

after June7, 2019: $310/$230/$250

NOTE: Powell House Subscribers pay an additional $50/person

CHILDCARE WITH 3 WEEKS NOTICE --for Children up to 12 years old, at $50/child

Life Lessons from a Bad Quaker: For Those Friends Who are Bad at Being Good     March 8-10, 2019


On quick observation, the Quaker lifestyle boasts peace, solitude, and simplicity—qualities that are attractive and compelling to all Friends. Yet living a life of Friendly faith is not as simple as it may look. In fact, it’s often characterized more by the stumbles than the grace. “When someone asks me what kind of Quaker I am,” says J. Brent Bill, “I say I’m a bad one. I’ve got the belief part down pretty well, I think. It’s in the practice of my belief in everyday life where I often miss the mark.” In our Life Lessons from a Bad Quaker workshop, based on his book by the same title, a self-professed non-expert on faith invites participants to a joyful exploration of the faith journey—perfection not required. With whimsy, humor, and wisdom, we will participate in a joyful, interactive exploration of the testimonies. We’ll examine how to put faith into practice to achieve a life that is soulfully still yet active, simple yet satisfying, peaceful yet strong. This workshop is an invitation to a pilgrimage toward a more meaningful and and satisfying life . . . one step - or stumble - at a time.

Our leader is J. Brent Bill, a life-long Friend who is a recorded minister, writer, retreat, leader, and co-clerk (and co-founder) of the Association of Bad Friends (For Quakers Who are Bad at Being Good) on Facebook. In addition to Life Lessons from a Bad Quaker, Brent is also the author of Holy Silence: The Gift of Quaker Spirituality, Sacred Compass: The Way of Spiritual Discernment, and numerous other books. He's a graduate of Wilmington College and Earlham School of Religion. He lives in rural Indiana. Visit his website at


Register by Feb. 22: $280-$200/adults; $125/ages 13-22; $70/infants-12; $175/commuters

After Feb. 22: $260/$145/$90$195

Childcare with 3 weeks notice.

Providing Pastoral Care in All Kinds of Weather

with Bruce Heckman

May 17-19, 2019

Prepare to better serve your meeting community as a pastoral caregiver.

We will consider how to care for Friends who are homebound, hospitalized, terminally ill, and newly bereaved or grieving. We’ll also explore approaches to helping troubled or disruptive members and attenders and those with mental health problems. Gain skill and confidence to serve your Meeting Community in the area of Pastoral Care.

Bruce E. Heckman, M. Div., PhD., is a retired Hospice Chaplain who continues providing counseling and psychotherapy in part-time private practice. Before attending seminary late in his career, he worked in college counseling centers at Illinois State, Illinois Wesleyan, and the University of Texas at Austin and served as the clinical director of an addictions treatment center. He is a long-time member of Pastoral Care and Ministry committees in the Yellow Springs (Ohio) Friends Meeting and has led workshops at FGC Gatherings and small conferences. He is a long-time member of Quakers in Pastoral Care and Counseling and currently serves on its steering committee.

Register by May 1, 2019: $280-200/adults; $125/ages 13-22; $70/ infants-12; 175/commuters

After May 1st: $260/$145/$90/$195

Childcare with 3 weeks notice.



Spring Work/Messiah Sing/Scavenger Hunt, April 19-21, 2019

This weekend has become a favorite of many F/friends and families. Whether you come to work and sing, work and play, or work - this weekend is for you! We'll have childcare for the young ones while we work.

The work:  Build. Design. Chop. Split and stack. Dig. Paint. Sew. Plant. Wash. Make the snacks. Eat the snacks. Our executive directors and maintenance manager will be on hand to direct the tasks.  There are always lots of things to do inside and out to get Powell House ready for spring and summer. Let us know you are coming, and we will let you know if you can bring any specific tools with you.

The music:  We will rehearse selected parts of the Messiah on Friday after supper. If you sing or play and instrument, come prepared to participate. The computer recording will support our best efforts. Of course, we will be singing the Hallelujah Chorus through at least once on Sunday morning!

The scavenger hunt:  This event will occupy us on Saturday evening as we roam throughout the Powell House grounds to gather all the items on the list! Families can participate together or split up into different groups. A special prize will await all those who participate in the challenge of the hunt.

Register by April 5:  $85/adults; $15/children & youth

After April 5:  $105/adults; $35/children & youth

Childcare will be provided for children 9 and under.

Powell House is the conference and retreat center of the 

New York Yearly Meeting of the Religious Society of Friends (Quakers).

Powell House
524 Pitt Hall Rd
Old Chatham,  NY
phone  518-794-8811
fax     518-794-8815
Adult Program
Youth Program