“When a great truth seeker and a great truth giver meet, the result is a great and liberating enlightenment born of the experience of new truth.” (130:1.1)
Truth seeking and truth giving abounded at WildGoosethis year.
An annual event, the Goose Festival drew about 3,000 people this July—mostly progressive Christians, and especially those involved with the emerging church movement—to Hot Springs, NC for four days of spirituality, justice, music, and the arts. Urantia Book readers have been attending for years, led by Pamela Chaddock and others who see this gathering as fertile ground for sharing the Book’s teachings and learning from Christians as they write the next chapter of their tradition.
I was privileged to join for the first time this year, staffing the Urantia Book booth with Pamela, Thomas Orjala, Isadora Galjour, Darren Atherton, Miranda Clendening, Tim Hobbs, and Ben Bowler. The booth was beautifully positioned at the entrance to the festival grounds, and we had almost non-stop conversations with open and interested religionists throughout the weekend.
A huge highlight—not just for UB readers, but for the whole event—was a pitch-perfect Friday night concert by Pato Banton, Antoinette Hall, and their band. In the wake of a dramatic thunderstorm, Pato and Antoinette lit up the stage with radiant music and even more beautiful messages of spiritual truth. The audience was aglow with good vibes, and after the show, every Urantia Book made it into eager hands. People were deeply moved and a sense of spirit unity pervaded the crowd.
I think something shifted at this Wild Goose. Pamela and others have been working patiently to bring the UB into this environment, and this year it felt like we arrived. There was almost no animosity; only curiosity. And so many emergent Christian leaders have now heard of the Book, thanks to persistent efforts by a few readers, that there is a real opening to move forward in partnership. Those of us who attended are dreaming big and excited to keep spreading our wings.
In fact, we are already preparing for next year’s Wild Goose Festival slated for July 13-16, 2017. Registration discounts are available with groups of 10 or more. Please consider joining us!
Ministry Innovation Fellow
Harvard Divinity School