Writing As Witness

Join Shawn Smucker and I on Saturday, October 15 from 9:30 to 3:30 at Still Waters Retreat House in Carlisle, PA.

Hold still, dear tongue.
And you, my pen, write
down the words of
silence and tell to my
eyes the matters of my

~ Gregory of Nazianzus

“I write to know more about my own struggle . . .
the purpose of my writing is to protect my spiritual health.”

~ Henri Nouwen

A witness is both one who sees and one who gives voice to what is seen.  Come explore writing as a means of observing the movement of God within ourselves and within the world.  Time will also be given to considering the role our voices might have in the world – how might we share the life that we see and write in a world so desperate for signs of life? 

Content will be appropriate for both those who write regularly and those interested in exploring writing as a spiritual practice. 

The day will include:
* silent prayer
* introduction to a few simple spiritual writing practices
* reflection on the role of memoir and personal essay in spiritual formation
* exploration of innovative ways to share your gift of words 


Kelly Chripczuk is a 2014 graduate of Oasis’ Spiritual Direction for Spiritual Guides program.  She has a Master of Divinity degree and is a licensed pastor who is learning to take herself less seriously.  Kelly offers Spiritual Direction and retreats in Boiling Springs, PA where she lives with her husband, four children, and an ever-changing menagerie of pets.  She regularly writes reflective essays and poetry for an online audience. 
Shawn Smucker is the author of numerous books including "Building a Life Out of Words," "How to Use a Runaway Truck Ramp," and the novel, "The Day the Angels Fell." He lives with his wife and six children in the city of Lancaster, Pennsylvania. You can find him online at

Retreat Fee: $50-$75 (as you are able)
Please bring a brown bag lunch

When: October 15, 2016 from 9:30-3:30

Where: Still Waters Retreat House
               501 W. Slate Hill Rd.
               Carlisle, PA 17013

To Register: 
Contact Betsy Keller via email ( or phone (717-737-8222) OR Register Online Here 


  1. oh how I wish I could be there. We still go back east to Lancaster/Harrisburg area to visit family. However, this week we are headed out to Portland, OR to visit our son and family there. I saw this first on Shawn's blog and someday, I'd love to meet you and attend something you are involved in.