P.A.P.A Fest  

Posted by Ryan Woods

Wow, comments have been few and far between lately. Oh well, I won't hold it against you my dearest hidden blogmunity.
So let me share with you as much as I can about our PAPAfest experience...

It was an amazing weekend. In every way it was confirming and inspiring. Many people around us questioned our journey there, questioned whether or not we were going to get sucked up into something other than the simple message of Jesus, whether this was some cultic hippie fest similar to Woodstock, and many similar objections.
Don't get me wrong, I'm sure there were some unhealthy things that happened there, but speaking just from my personal experience (the things I saw, heard, and came in contact with) this weekend was all about gathering a group of people together who desperatlly and passionatly desire to take the words of Jesus seriously. So when he speaks of being a peacemaker, when he talks of taking care of the poor, when he talks of sharing our money, when he talks of dispensing love, when he talks about moral purity, etc., they are choosing to ask the question "what does that look like today?" I can't go into too much detail about the classes, music, and conversations right now. I'm still holding a lot of it tight to my chest while I process and pray over what next step God is taking us toward. But here are a few of the highlights, once again, bullet point style:

  • We attended learning sessions concerning converting your car to run on old restaurant oil, the relational tithe, Jesus for President, communal living, prayer and quiet time with God, bike repair, african drumming (this one was actually for the kids and it was awesome), spiritual leprosy, and a few more.
  • Jones picked a fight with Shane Claiborne...kind of...Shane was teaching the kids how to use circus tricks (magic, juggling, etc.) to bring peace and to be joyful and have fun as Jesus intended. And before they started Jones stole one of their juggling pins. Shane approached Jones and asked nicely for it back and Jones responded as two year olds usually do with an emphatic "no!". Shane tried two more times with no more luck. Finally he tried to just carefully grab it from Jones, which lead to a small squeal and him bolting from the front row to the second row. It was at this point that Shane gave up and I and another juggler intervened and got him to give up the pin. It's not much of a story really, but I sounds so good to say Jones fought with Shane.
  • In between the different music sets they would call different spiritual mentors on a cell phone and have them give an exhortation of sorts as they held the phone up to the microphone. Some of these calls included Tony Campolo, Brian McClaren, and Ched Meyers. These were very challenging an inspirational (for lack of a better term). They challenged us to be people of prayer, of meditation, to be into the Word, and other good things that i've got written down in my journal.
  • It was hot. It was really hot. And we were all camping in a big empty field...with no shade cover. On the coolest day by far I saw that it was 90 degrees with pretty high humidity.

That's all I'll say for now. Overall I felt like God confirmed a lot of things he was already leading us to believe. It was nice to be around people who had similar interests and hopes as us.

I'd just like to leave you with some of the prayers I left PAPA fest with...

  • We're praying for our future church plant in downtown Vancouver. How does God plan on incorporating these ideas of deeper, purposeful, and intimate community into this church.
  • We're praying for more people around us to begin to share some of our same passion for justice, community, and faith sharing. It's hard not having that "one couple" to bounce things off of or to partner with in this.
  • We're praying about our finances more than ever.
  • Peace

8 additions to the conversation

I am telling you- our original blogmunity has all but dwindled away. Literaly, who blogs regularly anymore?? No one. That is who. Well, besides me, you, Jen and Arwen. I guess you need to join a new one. I know of a great adoption blogmunity...think about it.

I still read them! I check my whole list several times a week, even. And I lurk on a bunch of Tara's adoption friends' blogs, too, for the cute baby pictures. =)

I just don't comment as much as I used to, or post more than once a month. Okay, I'm a bad blogger. But I'm still here. I still care!

I'm not worried Tt, I know people still read, there just aren't the comments like there used to be. I've got a stat counter that tells me when and how often people read...I'm creepy like that.

your stat counter gives me tracers that I have to delete cause there's no room on my computer.

perhaps your stat counter is also the one who gave my C-A-T her-p-e-s. think about it.

I'm glad that you got to do all this. The pics look fun.

but i'm pretty glad you're back.
no lie.
now about that mustache....

your cat got herpes from my statcounter...the question is...who gave me herpes?


or ladies with lustful eyes....

Ryan...I have tons of respect for you guys and your commitment to go to PAPA fest. Know that we're praying for you guys.

I would like some pictures please. Arwen gets to see pictures, but we don't. I am feeling left out.

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I am uncertain what to call myself, but my family and I are committed to the people of downtown Vancouver, WA. We are followers of Christ and hope to be a part of a movement of hope, imagination, and transformation in our developing downtown community.

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