In mid-November, a group of pastors and faith leaders met in Ashland, Massachusetts for the off-site writing workshop Writing to Change the World with author Jonathan Wilson-Hartgrove. This workshop, hosted in partnership with the United Church of Christ Massachusetts Conference, is geared towards writers interested in inspiring social change. Participants read an advance copy of Wilson-Hartgrove’s forthcoming book and discussed authors that have inspired them, ranging from Dorothy Day to James Baldwin to Ta-Nehisi Coates. Participants also shared and workshopped their personal writing. One highlight of the week was a group field trip to nearby Framingham, Massachusetts to visit the site of Harmony Grove, where abolitionists such as Sojourner Truth, William Lloyd Garrison, and Frederick Douglass met in for 4th of July picnics from 1850 to 1875.
One participant remarked: “I really enjoyed Jonathan’s leadership style. He knows his craft well, and is open, easy, and welcoming. His non-authoritarian, deeply respectful and open hearted listening modeled and set a high bar for our responses to one another’s work.”