Flock FAQs

Hi There!  Thanks for being curious enough to stop by. Just scrolllllll down to find a few words on each of these handy topics. -R

  • How do I start/stop a subscription to Flock
  • How do I change the credit card associated with Flock membership fees?
  • Can I try before I buy?
  • Do you offer scholarships or sliding-scale pricing?
  • How do I change the credit card I use for my Flock membership?
  • Is Flock open to all relig-ish persuasions?
  • Is Flock open to men?
  • How can I join the private Facebook page?
  • How Private are Flock discussion? 
  • What’s the code of conduct in Flock?
  • How Did Flock Get Started?
  • What do you mean by “right-fit” spiritual practices?
  • What is “soulcare?”
  • What do you mean by “relig-ish”?
  • What are your credentials?
  • Do you offer private spiritual direction?
  • How can I contact you?

***

How do I start/stop a subscription to Flock?

In 2014, Flock subscriptions are $25 a month. That’s the price of two drop in yoga classes, or about what you might put in an offering plate on a Sunday morning.

Let’s Start! To subscribe to Flock, just click here and follow the steps. Payments are currently managed by PayPal. You can start any time, and you’ll automatically get the next available lesson on the first Monday of next month.

Time to Stop? We know that circumstances change, and that needs vary. So you can stop your subscription any time it stops being right-fit for you. Just click here to close your subscription.

Need to change your credit card? You can do that through PayPal, and here is a handy how-to for you. If you are using Amazon Payments, here is a detailed description.

Can I try before I buy?

Sure! Just click here to see our January practice. Keep in mind, as a Flock member you’ll get a lesson like this each month, along with access to the happily active Flock Facebook page, and bonus materials along the way.

Do you offer scholarships or sliding-scale pricing?

Not at this time. I’ve found in the past that people are not engaged with our Flock lessons if they are not financially invested in the community. There’s an exchange of energy that’s involved, and it works best if it’s in good balance. (For more about healthful energy exchange, click here)


Is Flock open to all relig-ish persuasions?

Yes! Flock is dedicated to helping people discover right-fit practices. We practice a hybrid spirituality. A spirituality based in what we value most, with practices that best help us live out those values.

We are multi-religious.
We are interfaith.
We are spiritual but not religious.
We are relig-ish.

We purposefully cultivate open minds and hearts, and invite you to share your story.

Is Flock open to men?

Flock began as a women’s group, but has been open to all genders since January 2012.

How can I join the Flock Facebook page?

An invitation to join the Flock Facebook page is sent to members shortly after they subscribe. If you haven’t received your invitation via email, please contact me.

Not a Flock member? Join me at the Magpie Girl “fan” page for ongoing soulcare tidbits. Just click here, and “like” me.

How Private are Flock discussions?

We realize that religion and spirituality can be tender subjects. Because of that, we try to create a safe sanctuary where people can authentically express their beliefs and their questions.

Most of our discussions happens on the Flock Facebook page. Only Flock members are accepted as “friends” to this page. This allows for a little bit more privacy. But please keep in mind that this is FB and their privacy rules change often. So if you need to pour out your deepest darkest secrets, it’s better to contact your Flock friends directly via email.

What’s the code of conduct in Flock?

Flock in an inclusive interfaith community. In order to make space for all flavors of faith and spirituality, we have a few guidelines for Kind Conduct. Here they are, from our Facebook page:

1. Get Curious. Don’t understand why someone practices what they do? Confused about why someone holds a certain belief. Get Curious! Some good questions to ask are: “What drew you to that belief/practices?” “How does that practice benefit you or serve you well?” “What prompted you to make that change?” Go for dialogue, not debate.

2. Make Space for Language. God. G_d. Allah. Goddess. The Universe. Spirit. Mystery. The Soul. There are a lot of names for what Flock folks are connecting with. Please be generous in your understanding and let each member use the terminology that suits them best.

3. Dance in the Overlap. Here at Flock we try to celebrate the places where our beliefs and practices overlap. That means we celebrate what we have in common, get curious about our differences, and remain open learners to one another. Lean towards “dancing in the overlap” rather than getting grumpy about differences.

4. Let Justice Reign. Flock welcomes all nationalities, ages, creeds, genders and sexual orientation and is a GLBTQ ally. Please behave accordingly. Hate Speech will not be tolerated in the Flock.

5. Assume the Best. Not sure what someone meant by a comment? Assume they meant well. Ask questions. Say sorry with ease. Forgive as soon as you are able.

What do you mean by “right-fit” spiritual practices?

We’ve all tried to be the square peg jamming ourselves into a round hole. We “obey” the rules of religious institutions because they tell us their system works. We “discipline” ourselves to do things on endless repeat that have no relevance to our everyday life. We drink the cod liver oil because someone down the line told us it would be good for us.

In the words of Dr. Phil: “How’s that working for you?”

The spiritual practices in your life should serve you well. They should heal up your broken heart. They should restore your energy. And they should help you live out your core values in your every day. And as a bonus, they should integrate easily into your everyday schedules so they don’t stress you out.

-Right fit practices are connected to your history, so you feel rooted.
-Right fit practices are authentic to your true beliefs and values.
-Right fit practices are creative enough to flex with you as you grow.
-Right fit practices are possible.

What is “soulcare?”

Soulcare is anything that nurtures you.

Soulcare is brewing a quiet cup of tea. And soulcare is re-planting a clear cut.
Soulcare is running around the lake. And soulcare is taking a nap.
Soulcare is meditating at 5am. And soulcare is singing in the shower.
Soulcare is taking Communion. And soulcare is baking bread.

Soulcare is whatever set of practices nurtures your spirit today.

Soulcare is not navel gazing, or selfish pampering, or rigorous religious discipline. Soulcare is what makes worldcare possible. Soulcare is the self-care that’s needed if we are to live out the things we value most. Soulcare is what lets me (and you!) extend love to the world.

What do you mean by “relig-ish”?

A woman tells me “Technically I’m a Christian, but I’ve always been a little bit witch-y.”
An old friend describes herself as “Buddhist Christian.”
A Magpie Girl reader keeps a statue of Isis next to her icon of the Virgin Mary.
My family celebrates Passover, Christmas, and the Solstices.

We practice a hybrid faith. A faith based in what we value most, with practices that best help us live out those values. We aren’t just this religion or that one. We are multi-religious. We are interfaith. We are spiritual but not religious. We are relig-ish.

What are your credentials?

I’ve been building soulful communities for more than two decades – from small groups, to classic congregations, to online gatherings. I’m a member of Spiritual Directors International, and have a BA in Philosophy and a MCS in Applied and Spiritual Direction. My master’s thesis was on art-based religious rituals for contemporary churches, and I’ve been teaching on art +spirituality in workshops and online since 2005. I have been a speaker or  guest lecturer at Soularize, Emergent Conferences, Off the Map, Seattle Pacific University, and Baake Graduate University. I’ve been blogging about emerging spiritual trends in the U.S. since 2003, and served as a Religion and Spirituality editor at BlogHer. For more information click here.

Do you offer private spiritual direction or coaching?

Spiritual Direction and Coaching are available exclusively to Flock members. This is because Flock is such a great way to understand my approach, and to help you connect with the kinds of questions and interests you might want to bring to a coaching session. Also, I find coaching and direction to be rewarding but intense work — so I only take on 3-4 clients at a time. Limiting my client pool to Flock members helps me feel less overwhelmed, and helps you get better coaching. If you are interested in booking private phone or skype sessions to work through a sticky wicket or a spiritual conundrum, please contact me.

How can I contact you?

Feel free to email me. I dedicate 2 afternoons a week to email, so please be patience as you wait for a reply. (I’m happy to help!) You can also reach me through Facebook and Twitter.

How Did Flock Get Started?

Have you ever read that essay by Anne Lamott where she says something like:

“When a lot of seemingly meaningless things start going wrong all at once, it is to protect something big and lovely that’s trying to get itself born.”

That’s how Flock got born.

Somewhere in 2004, my faith-practice stopped working for me. Prayer no longer helped me talk to God. I was tired of studying the same book. And Sunday mornings started to seem like a really good time for pancakes.

Seeing as I was the minister, this became a problem.

So I left the church. In one fell blow I lost my history, my rituals, my tribe, and the approval of much of my family.

From the outside it certainly seemed like a lot of things were going “wrong” all at once. From the inside, it was exhilarating—scary and confusing, but full of possibility, nonetheless.

For a long time I floated. I looked to art for inspiration. I talked a lot with like-minded souls. I experimented with different practices. Eventually a new language for spiritual care started to develop in my writing. This language about soulcare was deep-rooted. It was authentic to who I was in at my current stage of life. And it was creative enough to grow with me.

A little group of friends and acquaintances were with me in this process. Trying things out. Thinking things through. Contributing. But we had no place to gather, and we were in the diaspora—spread wide across the distances. So I invited people to join me in a virtual soulcare community – Flock.  In 2009 Flock began as a gathering place for women from a variety of spiritual persuasions. Eager to help as many people as possible find their right-fit spiritual practices, Flock opened the doors to all genders in 2011.

Over the past few years we’ve watched our community evolve. Each year our practices are somewhat familiar, but a little bit different. Each year we adapt, allowing space for Flock to grow organically over time. Each year the community shifts slightly, as we continue to explore a sort of relig-ish life.

A life with traditions that reflect our most dearly held values.
A life that allows us to be stingy with judgement, and generous with compassion.
A life that is rooted, creative, and authentically ours.

Would you like to build that kind of life? Join the Flock story. Let something good finally get itself born.