Heartfelt Service: An Act of Loving Part 5

Heartfelt Service: An Act of Loving

Part 5

 

"In the big picture there isn't a 'leader,' nor is there a 'follower' -- there are only those who serve." - John-Roger, D.S.S.

 

 

The following article is part five of five in our HeartFelt Global Network series on service. 

 

Anne Peters from Boulder, Colorado

Anne Peters has been working in matters relating to the proper recycling of old electronics for nearly 20 years, and she is a specialist in the global & national policies, technologies, and standards relating to this. This fall she took her service to Israel and Palestine to assist their efforts in this matter.

Left to Right: Two female Palestinian engineers; Anne Peters; Anat Langer-Gal who is with the Israeli NGO working on the electronics-burning issues; Amran Amarni and Akram Amro, with the Palestinian NGO working on the electronics-burning issues; Pete Ornstein with Sustainable Israeli Palestinian Projects, the US NGO who organized the whole trip.

Left to Right: Two female Palestinian engineers; Anne Peters; Anat Langer-Gal who is with the Israeli NGO working on the electronics-burning issues; Amran Amarni and Akram Amro, with the Palestinian NGO working on the electronics-burning issues; Pete Ornstein with Sustainable Israeli Palestinian Projects, the US NGO who organized the whole trip.

I asked Anne some questions about her service ministry and here’s what she said.

Skyler: What does service mean to you?

Anne: Service to me means giving fully of ALL I have to give, on all levels. I have been in MSIA for 40 years year, and I have of course matured and grown through my adult life. What I have to give in service thus has grown as well. My emotions have become more settled and refined; my spiritual awareness has become more sensitive and attuned to the Light; my compassion has grown; my understanding of the dynamics of my community, town, state, nation, and planet has deepened; and my intellectual body of knowledge in my profession has grown and approached mastery in some areas.  My heart has opened time and time again.  Being of service means giving freely of all these many gifts.

Skyler: What inspires you into service?

Anne: God. The Christ. The Holy Spirit. The Mystical Traveler. My compassion for the ills and woes of this world, and the knowledge that I have been given so much that I must give back, of my overflow. 

Skyler: How did you become involved with this project?

Anne: The particular project I have been working on involves a knotty problem in a troubled part of the world. Scrap electrical and electronic equipment - and many other discards - flow from Israel to the West Bank section of Palestine. The West Bank land is contested and the Israelis hold control of it as an occupying force. There impoverished people sort from the discards what can be sold, repaired or refurbished, and the remainders are burned in open pits, often on agricultural lands near places where thousands of people live. Cables from old electronics are specifically burned to retrieve the copper inside them, earning a few shekels for the workers.  This burning causes terrible and nearly irreversible contamination of the water, soil, and air in these locations.  Studies are finding toxic levels of harmful chemicals in the water in these areas, as well as in the blood of residents. It is causing an increase in cancer, respiratory, reproductive, and other serious illnesses for those living nearby - especially for children and child-bearing women. This is not a part of the world where laws against open burning practices are enforced, as the Israeli and Palestinian stakeholders have entrenched political positions that preclude attention to such problems.

Through colleagues, I became connected with three non-profit organizations - one American, one Israeli & one Palestinian - that are working together to alleviate these terrible problems. The in-country non-profits invited me to come give presentations and hold meetings with the Israeli and Palestinian elected officials, decision-makers, and impacted people this fall.

Skyler: Why were you drawn to this project?

Anne: Really it was more like the project was drawn to me. Through a series of connections, the US nonprofit working on this, Sustainable Israeli Palestinian Projects, found me and invited me to get involved. We held a series of Skype calls over the past year and I contributed my expertise to the Israeli & Palestinian non-profit groups' staff.  It became apparent that the situation there was too complicated to be able to move anything forward until I came in person. I decided to forego an honorarium and volunteered my time.  Knowing there were people so poor they would pollute their lands and bodies in exchange for just enough money to buy their daily bread gave me pause. I could not accept any money for this work in good conscience. The locals asked me to come.

I was also drawn to this project in the hopes that my knowledge and experience - both professional and as a minister in MSIA - would be of service in helping the locals find lasting solutions to this seemingly intractable problem.

While there, I gave presentations and held meetings with groups of both Israelis and Palestinians, with translators explaining in Hebrew and Arabic, respectively.  Participants included high-level officials from both governments, businesses with an interest in the situation, researchers, non-profit groups working on health and environmental issues, students, and citizens. After each presentation or meeting, the locals engaged in serious and lively discussion about the situation, jointly exploring ways to stop the burning and transition to safer methods of waste reduction and copper recovery.  In each situation and meeting I consciously placed columns of Light, asked for blessings for all concerned, for the Highest Good, and sought to be an example of living love. I worked hard to choose words and suggest actionsrooted in positive thoughts & actions, and devoid of 'againstness'; this is a part of the world where againstness has become deeply entrenched in the culture, politics, and worldview of so many people. Fortunately, there are peace-loving people everywhere and I hope that seeds of great peacefulness were planted with those folks who can grow them.
 

The results of my trip and contributions there won't be known for some time, but I trust that forward movement will occur and that solutions will come to those with the ability and good will to take action.

Skyler: What advice would you give to someone wishing to be more involved in service, but perhaps not knowing where to start?

Anne: Everyone has knowledge, gifts, strengths, and wisdom. I feel strongly that there is so much work to be done in this world, to make it a better place. One only need express a prayer to God, 'please help me find the place where I can give of all that you have given me.' Then you have to pay attention to the world around you, the choices you have, and the opportunities that come your way, and you will find a path of service that helps your gifts flow out into the world.

 

Thank you, Anne for sharing your ministry and service. Your sharing enriches our collective experience and understanding of serving and giving.

I have felt blessed and inspired to be able to hear these wonderful sharings on service from several of our MSIA ministers. Thank you to all those who shared their ministry and service. 

If this has inspired you to share your ministry or service in future HeartFelt Global Network articles, get in touch! Email Skyler@heartfelt.org

 

 “What is the most beautiful gift you can give? The gift of yourself."
– John-Roger, D.S.S.

 

 

We are one in our loving for one another. 
In loving,
Skyler

Sky Confernece 2.jpg

Skyler Patton, HeartFelt Director

office: (323) 328-1925

Heartfelt Service: An Act of Loving Part 4

Heartfelt Service: An Act of Loving

Part 4

 

“If you can keep your consciousness directed into the idea of serving, even though you may not know what it is you are to accomplish in being of service, then your end result will be the ability to serve and master any obstacle to being of service. You can know it and work it and be on top of it. Then you bring your consciousness into line with true service by serving with love and joy.” 
- John-Roger, D.S.S.
 

 

The following article is part four of five in our HeartFelt Global Network series on service. 

 

Danny Safron and Matt Van Fossan from Los Angeles, California

Danny Safron and Matthew Van Fossan have been sharing their love of singing with those in convalescent homes in Los Angeles for the past two years. Matthew was inspired after singing to his grandma at her nursing home in Orlando, Florida while she was nearing her transition. As a way to connect with her, Matt played guitar and sang to her and it got a really lively response from her despite her health. He subsequently asked Danny about a group called the Traveling Troubadours that Danny was a part of with a group of ministers who entertained convalescents in the early part of this century. Matt, Danny and Claire Smith brought together their musical talents and revived the Traveling Troubadours to the new Troubadour Travelers.

I asked Danny and Matt some questions about their service ministry and here’s what they said:

Skyler: What does service mean to you?

Danny: Sharing our hearts with joy and loving.

Matt: Service is giving of oneself for a cause that’s bigger than ego gratification like fame or material gain. Service is giving from the heart from a place of gratitude and enjoyment.

Skyler: What inspires you into service?

Danny: The inner call of Spirit/the Traveler, and the fulfillment that comes with giving.

Matt: My heart calls me into service as a way to enrich my own life. Kind of like enlightened self-interest. 

Skyler: Why were you drawn to this project?

Danny: I felt a connection with Matthew, and am uplifted in his joyful, loving and humorous presence.

Matt: I like singing and playing guitar and this was a way to share that with people who were open and appreciative.

Skyler: What advice would you give to someone wishing to be more involved in service, but perhaps not knowing where to start?

Danny: Look to what makes you happy, makes your heart sing, that you love doing. Reach out to others in your community to see if they want to join you in such a service. Once Matthew and I decided to move forward with this, I put the word out to other Ministers to participate if they'd like, and contacted a couple of convalescent homes to see if they were open to our coming by to entertain the residents and staff. Claire Smith has been a regular, and she is a professional flautist, and also brings percussion instruments that she plays and shares with others. Matthew leads us in song and on guitar, and other MSIA'er occasionally join the fun! We've been going to the same place for over a year, as it's close to Prana, which is where Matt and Achilles live, and the staff and residents are very receptive and appreciative!

Matt: The secret is to do what you love to do and then find ways of sharing it with people. Connect with something that gets you excited, enthusiastic, engaged. That’ll make life better already. Then getting to place that into the service of another, wow, that’s the icing on the cake!

Matt, Claire, Achilles (Matt’s service dog) and Danny will be back at the East Terrace Rehab on Thursday December 29th from 10:30-11:30 am. If you’d like to join them, please email Danny at: ds@safronsales.com

 

Thank you, Danny and Matt for sharing your ministry and service. Your sharing enriches our collective experience and understanding of serving and giving.

If this has inspired you to share your ministry or service in future HeartFelt Global Network articles, get in touch! Email Skyler@heartfelt.org

 

 "The highest form of consciousness is service. And the highest form of service is selfless service." – John-Roger, D.S.S.

 

 

We are one in our loving for one another. 
In loving,
Skyler

Skyler Patton, HeartFelt Director

office: (323) 328-1925

Heartfelt Service: An Act of Loving Part 3

Heartfelt Service: An Act of Loving

Part 3

 

“If you can keep your consciousness directed into the idea of serving, even though you may not know what it is you are to accomplish in being of service, then your end result will be the ability to serve and master any obstacle to being of service. You can know it and work it and be on top of it. Then you bring your consciousness into line with true service by serving with love and joy.” 
- John-Roger, D.S.S.

 

 

 

The following article is part three of five in our HeartFelt Global Network series on service. 

 

Romo Gonzales from San Antonio, Texas

In San Antonio, Texas, Romo Gonzales has been organizing local HeartFelt service projects for the past two years. Most recently, he has organized projects in both San Antonio and Austin. Below is his update on those.

Romo: In the last few months, your servant has been commuting to and from San Antonio and Austin Texas. This has opened the opportunity for HeartFelt events to take place in both cities. This past summer, two wonderful events took place that I would like to share with you.

In Austin, HeartFelt worked with the Central Texas Food Bank in July, collecting monetary donations during a drive the food bank was having that month. Minister Hesperia Blackburn was very involved with this event. As we put the word out to the communities in Austin and San Antonio about the donation drive, Hesperia reminded me that donations made to the food bank that month would not only be matched by contributors, but also tripled! With the wonderful donations collected in the community in July, and the donations being tripled, HeartFelt donated $900 to the Central Texas Food Bank! YAY! Just in time for back to school and the fall months.

In San Antonio, HeartFelt worked with Haven for Hope to raise awareness in the homeless community on the importance of keeping hydrated during the hot summer months. HeartFelt collected both monetary and bottled water donations to take to the homeless center. As I visited the center prior to the donation date, I was very impressed with the facility. Haven for Hope is not really a homeless center - it is a transformation center in which more than 90 organizations partner with the facility. For example, the YMCA provides daycare, the San Antonio food bank provides meals, Centro Med provides medical needs, and the list goes on and on. In August, HeartFelt made a huge bottled water donation to the facility. To be honest with you, I lost count of how many cases of water I collected, but I think it was in the neighborhood of 2,000 bottles of water! Also, most major cities now have filling stations so that individuals are encouraged to keep their bottles and refill them at these stations. August is usually the hottest month in San Antonio, so this event was very timely, and I am looking forward to future events at this facility. 

In the book ‘Passage Into Spirit,’ John-Roger writes "when we recognize our love of humanity, we do whatever has to be done to express that love to and with others. That is called service." This love that I am able to express with you now, is the love I have found through HeartFelt and so very happy to be a part of! I look forward to the Spirit of HeartFelt continuing to shine and bringing forth joy and upliftment.

I also asked Romo about his experience and thoughts on what service is to him, and here is what he had to say:

Skyler: What does service mean to you?

Romo: Service to me means helping others in a loving way. I think we all possess the desire, the want to help others and share love. The energy that comes forth and the joy one feels when you do something to help another in a loving way, from your heart, and I mean even the smallest gesture, is beautiful and inspirational.  

Skyler: What inspires you into service?

Romo: There are hundreds of projects and organizations one can easily become involved with, especially if you live in a highly populated area.  Personally, I always think about children in need, women in need and the homeless population in general. This does not mean that I am always thinking about being of service to others or a project that I may become involved with. However, as I go about my daily routine of driving to and from work, etc., something or someone will usually remind me of needs in my community. It may be just driving down the road and seeing a sign for the women's shelter, or remembering at the grocery store that not everyone will be having a Thanksgiving dinner. 

Skyler: What advice would you give to someone wishing to be more involved in service, but perhaps doesn't know where to start?

Romo: If you wish to be more involved in service, I suggest you simply look around the community where you live and be open to the needs of others. Then, once you identify something that motivates you, simply ask yourself what you could do to help. It doesn't have to be anything big or some huge responsibility to take on. It could be something as simple as buying a $.50 bottle of water and giving it to a homeless person during the summer. Whatever may inspire you to be of service, once you are, you will be blessed with the beauty, the love and joy that comes with it.

 

Thank you, Romo for sharing your ministry and service. Your sharing enriches our collective experience and understanding of serving and giving.

 

If this has inspired you to share your ministry or service in future HeartFelt Global Network articles, get in touch! Email Skyler@heartfelt.org

 

 "The highest form of consciousness is service. And the highest form of service is selfless service." – John-Roger, D.S.S.

 

 

We are one in our loving for one another. 
In loving,
Skyler

Skyler Patton, HeartFelt Director

office: (323) 328-1925

Heartfelt Service: An Act of Loving Part 2

Heartfelt Service: An Act of Loving

Part 2

 

"When you move into a consciousness of service, you realize that the first thing you have to do is love. If you drop out of loving, you have also dropped out of service, and you may be doing things mechanically. You are no longer being of service; you are now being of "slaving," where you feel like you are a slave to something. When loving comes back in, then the serving reappears.” 
- John-Roger, D.S.S.

 

 

 

The following article is part two of five in our HeartFelt Global Network series on service. 

 

Jennifer Cayer from Los Angeles, California

Jennifer currently services at the Culver City Senior Center, 2 times per week for 2 hours per day (when not traveling for work) supporting the Los Angeles County Senior Nutrition Program, which feeds approximately 100 seniors’ low-cost or no-cost lunches.

I asked her about service and here is what she had to say:
 

Skyler: What does service mean to you?

Jennifer: Service is being fully present with a consciousness of authentic caring, curiosity, listening and willingness to do what Spirit asks in each moment.  Certainly service means giving and receiving, being in the flow, sharing without expectation of return, accepting the gifts that surface, surrendering to what is needed/wanted/wished for this moment, and foremost demonstrating loving.  And for me service brings both the requirements and the gifts of putting aside my own agenda, thoughts, beliefs and ego positions to honor who and what is present, including my own authentic expression.

Service is hope.  Hope that I and others can manifest and demonstrate on this level here, in this world in this moment, some of the magnificence of the other 90%.

Skyler: What inspires you into service?

Jennifer: Service is a way of being, a way of life actually, and I am grateful for the training I’ve received with all the organizations with which I’ve been involved over the years.  I am also grateful to be asked this question, so that I can examine what has become as natural as breathing to discover what is underneath.  

J-R’s words around service being the highest form of consciousness (something like that!) penetrated my being a long time ago, and I think I have been aspiring to live as a true initiate through serving.  If I am able to work in small ways, in small moments, to hold a service consciousness, then perhaps I can contribute to the greater good.  The familiar words, “for the highest good of all concerned” remind me that it’s okay if things don’t look or sound or feel in the way I prefer; the only question left is how I am going to express myself, or my response to the stimulus that is present.

My experience with serving is that it creates loving and joyful moments.  I think service creates the environment for Satsang, which is one of the primary ways I connect with Spirit.  So perhaps my true answer is that “Self-ishness” with a capital S inspires me to serve!


Skyler: How did you become involved with hospice? 

Jennifer: This question makes me laugh out loud!  A service project was part of the required curriculum for USM’s CHH program last year, in which I participated.  I thought this would be the simplest and easiest part of the program for me …and Spirit really had fun with me.  I was challenged to find something outside my usual patterns (which translated for me to volunteer outside our family organizations), and my ping-pong inner responses were hilarious.  A woman at my gym had a CCSC newsletter posted one day, I spoke with her about her volunteer service there, and then simply called the volunteer coordinator listed in that newsletter. (Basically, I just did it – thank you, Nike, for the tag line!)  But I also checked online for volunteer opportunities and considered several before making this choice.

Skyler: Why were you drawn to this project?

Jennifer: There are multiple answers to this question.  Tactically, I wanted to find something flexible because of my typical heavy workload and business travel schedule; and I wished my service to be local so I could ground more of my energy around home.  The nutrition program at the center provides this.  But the essential draw was that this project met my desire to provide ordinary support and service that made an extraordinary difference in daily lives.   It’s a way I can contribute without having to be in charge of anything, without supporting a huge vision or mission; I am reminded each time I serve that there is value in simply being present and doing what needs to be done. 

Skyler: What advice would you give to someone wishing to be more involved in service, but perhaps doesn't know where to start?

Jennifer: Once again my two perspectives come into play.  On the inner, I invite us all to become more aware of what is present in our daily lives, and to perhaps put on a special pair of etheric sunglasses that illuminate everyday service opportunities.  How did I happen to see that newsletter at the gym when I am usually super-focused on getting in a good workout?  Some part of me was paying attention.  

Practically, check out volunteermatch.org for possibilities, and pick one.  Or easier yet for those of us involved in Heartfelt/HeartReach/MSIA/IIWP/Insight/USM/Etc., just pick up the phone, call, and ask what needs to be done.  Try a few things.  My husband says I have a Whitman-Sampler approach to life: I grab ahold of something, bite into it, and then see if I like it.  If I don’t, I put it back (eeeew!).  If I do, then I lean in farther, and then if I still like it, I commit.  Hey, it’s worked well for me in the area of service, and has brought joy, fun stories and a lot of learning. 

 

Thank you, Jennifer for sharing your ministry and service. Your sharing enriches our collective experience and understanding of serving and giving.

 

If this has inspired you to share your ministry or service in future HeartFelt Global Network articles, get in touch! Email Skyler@heartfelt.org

 

 "The highest form of consciousness is service. And the highest form of service is selfless service." – John-Roger, D.S.S.

 

 

We are one in our loving for one another. 
In loving,
Skyler

Skyler Patton, HeartFelt Director

office: (323) 328-1925

Heartfelt Service: An Act of Loving Part 1

Heartfelt Service: An Act of Loving

Part 1

 

"When you move into a consciousness of service, you realize that the first thing you have to do is love. If you drop out of loving, you have also dropped out of service, and you may be doing things mechanically. You are no longer being of service; you are now being of "slaving," where you feel like you are a slave to something. When loving comes back in, then the serving reappears.” 
- John-Roger, D.S.S.

 

 

I’ve been thinking about service lately and what it means. I used to be so scared of serving because I thought it was something I could only do if I had lots of money to give or that I just wouldn’t know what to do and would have to look to someone to tell me how to serve. I viewed serving as a dream in the future, a promise to myself that one day “when I was able” I would serve. However, something didn’t sit right with me about that.

One day much later I was with a friend helping them with a project they were working on and we started chatting. It turned out that the person had a lot going on in their lives and really needed to talk out loud about it. I went on helping this person with their project and all the while I listened to what they had to say and just held in my loving for them. When the person was done they turned to me and said, “Thank you so much for listening to me and helping me out. It was really a huge service to me, you have no idea.” I was shocked and asked, “How can that be serving? It was a treat for me to sit with you and help you out and listen to you. That’s just what friends do.” My friend then said to me, “Service comes in all different forms. This was a selfless act of loving that I needed. It was service.”

And then suddenly it all started to click for me. Service doesn’t have to be something saved for when I had “enough” money, “enough” time, “enough” enough. I didn’t have to wait for someone to tell me how to be of service, because as J-R said, "in the big picture there isn't a 'leader,' nor is there a 'follower' -- there are only those who serve." Serving for me could simply be giving in small ways: giving myself, giving what I can right here, right now, what’s right in front of me. J-R said, “What is the most beautiful gift you can give? The gift of yourself.”

This got me thinking about all the different ministers I’ve seen over the past few years following their hearts and looking towards “what’s next” for how they serve. Because they’re all so very different, but equally beautiful and powerful, I wanted to share a few of these ministers’ experiences and thoughts on service that I think would add to this ongoing discovery of what service is to each of us.

Over the next five weeks, I will be featuring 7 ministers who are sharing the ways they are of service and what it means to them.

 

In New Mexico, ministers Theresa and Guy Hocking have been volunteering at least once a week at a local hospice for many years.

I asked them about service and here is what they had to say:
 

Skyler: What does service mean to you?

Guy: Service is looking to see what needs done, and doing whatever needs to be done.

Theresa: Service is giving from the overflow. I personally have an abundant life on all levels (another "tithing works!" story), and have time and energy to give to others.  While I would love to stay home and read and crochet, I am more powerfully drawn to being with others in the dying process, listening to their stories, hopefully having some laughs.

Skyler: What inspires you into service?

Guy: When I see things that I can do, I ask if it would be all right for me to do them (like washing dishes) or whatever … little jobs that I can do inspire me.

Theresa: Mom and Dad were my models.  For them it was the Catholic Church and anything else that would benefit their six children.  All of this is now reinforced with John-Roger saying "Service is the highest form of consciousness in the physical world." (Passage Into Spirit, p. 67).  Also very inspiring was the way J-R lived his life, he gave and gave, of himself, of his wisdom and loving.

Skyler: How did you become involved with hospice?  Why were you drawn to this service?

Theresa and Guy: We are involved with Mesilla Valley Hospice, Las Cruces, New Mexico, a non-profit residential hospice. We both had one parent plus Theresa's youngest brother who were under hospice care at the end of their lives. Hospice was nurturing for our dying relatives and the rest of us.  We have long been friends with two impressive women, one who started hospice care in a small town, and one who helped found this hospice, 35 years ago as a volunteer nurse.  Both are MSIA ministers, and one of these woman suggested volunteering for hospice.

And based on our experience with our family members, we did want to volunteer at hospice.  We knew enough about this hospice from our nurse friend so that as soon as we retired and moved to Las Cruces, Guy applied to be a volunteer.  Theresa finished MSS and DSS course work before applying.

We have served in a variety of ways.  Guy has interviewed patients and then written their life story for the family to have after they pass.  We have stayed with patients in their homes while their caretaker ran errands or had a break.

Together we run hospice errands which can be anything from taking medical folders between doctors and hospice, taking prescriptions to and fro a pharmacy, delivering supplies or prescriptions to patients in their homes somewhere in town or the county, taking envelopes to FedEx, going to the bank -- just about anything that needs to be driven somewhere.  Ideally we remember to plant Light columns as we run errands.

We have a patient that we visit once a week - and this can be in the home, in an assisted living facility, or a nursing home.  We've had patients who want to die, those who are afraid to die, those who are a bit befuddled about why they are on hospice care.  Everyone is unique -- we had one patient who could not hear Theresa so Guy repeated everything Theresa said in his deep voice.  Sometimes a half hour is enough for them, and one time our patient chatted for three and a half hours, but in general, we visit for one hour. Guy always checks any oxygen concentrator because sometimes the patient has inadvertently disconnected their oxygen tubing by tripping over it.  When we get home, we immediately write an email report that our volunteer coordinator passes on to the nurse and social worker.  We frequently see or hear something that can be helpful to the hospice staff.

One of Guy's long time patients became a friend.  Guy visited once a week in the home for months and then when his wife could no longer provide adequate care, the patient was admitted to the residential hospice, and for many weeks Guy visited him every day, 7 days a week.

One memorable experience that Theresa had was with a patient with COPD, very afraid of dying.  I knew she was church oriented, so one time when she was distraught, I asked if she had a guardian angel, yes, and how about requesting their assistance?  It worked, and apparently she could see the angel, who had comfort, advice and was going to deliver more oxygen soon, but first the lady was to go to sleep -- which she did.

Theresa:  I also spend one afternoon a week at the residential hospice.  First I check with the nurses and ask who might want company.  It is somewhat common that some patients do not have any visitors nor do they have family close by - we know of patients whose home was 100 miles away.  I've taken patients out to an enclosed garden area to smoke (why stop now?), held their hand for the three hours, helped them do their crafts which the family brought for them, take them for wheel chair rides or out to the beautiful koi pond garden, but mostly I am listening to their stories.  There was one patient who could not move his arms but he was always thirsty, so I set my phone timer for 30 minutes to help him drink something by holding the straw to his mouth.  We are also trained to feed patients who need assistance; however this frequently turns into a conversation time rather than eating time.

Guy: I enjoy the feeling of accomplishment, doing lots of little jobs, and seeing them done feels good. Yes, we get a bit attached to our patients but also it is easy to let them go, and on to the next patient with entirely different stories.  Sometimes we attend the funeral or burial service, especially if we have been with them for many months.

Skyler: What advice would you give to someone wishing to be more involved in service, but perhaps doesn't know where to start?

Guy: Don't try to do everything, just do what you can do well.

Theresa: Know yourself.  Can you work with the dying, the homeless, immigrants learning language, or kids learning to read?  There seems to be a volunteer job for any ability or interest.  Some of these need a special talent -- language skills, patience, fund-raising or grant writing skills, listening skills.  Theresa says she cannot work gracefully and neutrally with the homeless or those in poverty but working with those on "the dying path" is easy for her.

Learn to take care of yourself first, as a habit, before taking care of others. When volunteer coordinators learn your talents and dependability, there will be many requests.  It is okay to say "no" -- hard to do, but okay to do. Friends and associates often know the organizations that need help.  Cities might have volunteer fairs.  There might be a section of the daily paper in smaller cities that list volunteer opportunities.  Ask around, there are many opportunities.  While we may not serve for the rewards, inner rewards happen anyway.

 

Thank you, Theresa and Guy for sharing your ministries and service. Your sharing enriches our collective experience and understanding of serving and giving.

 

If this has inspired you to share your ministry or service in future HeartFelt Global Network articles, get in touch! Email Skyler@heartfelt.org

 

 "The highest form of consciousness is service. And the highest form of service is selfless service." – John-Roger, D.S.S.

 

 

We are one in our loving for one another. 
In loving,
Skyler

Skyler Patton, HeartFelt Director

office: (323) 328-1925

 

An Active Call for Peace

 

"Peace is possible. Each moment that one individual chooses peace inside, the whole of humanity moves forward. We each have the ability and responsibility to become peacemakers in our daily lives.” 
- John Morton, D.S.S.

 

This issue of the HeartFelt Global Network Bulletin is focused on the International Day of Peace.

The International Day of Peace is on Wednesday, September 21st. Established in 1981 by unanimous United Nations resolution 36/37, the General Assembly has declared this as a day devoted to“commemorating and strengthening the ideals of peace both within and among all nations and peoples.”  Peace Day provides a globally shared date for all humanity to commit to Peace above all differences and to contribute to building a Culture of Peace.

-from the UN website

 

“Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that believeth in me, the works that I do shall he do also; and greater works than these shall he do; because I go unto my Father.” 
John 14:12 King James Version (KJV)

All of us who have studied the teachings in MSIA know these words to be true. Our beloved John-Roger lived those words every day. Below is one of J-R's most powerful examples of the healing power of an intention and prayer for peace. 

For those who are unfamiliar, in July 1988 J-R said that the Berlin Wall would come down in two years. At the time, there was no talk that that would happen, but he gave the challenge to those present to plant Light forms in the Berlin Wall and see it down.  He said "most people see it up and complain, we have to see it down and praise."

J-R said that while there he had a moment when he went inside the Berlin Wall as a disintegrating worm that would break down the wall gradually over two years.

What was needed from everyone else in the group was that "they would be Light that energizes it  and make it go through the wall."

"It has to feed on Light. Not anger, hatred or separation. It feeds off unity, compassion and caring and love."

 

 

The HeartFelt Global Network has created a weeklong set of Peace intentions in "Light" of the International Peace Day. There are so many places and situations throughout the world that need the Light. Please participate in any way you can throughout the week. Even by doing SEs for 5 minutes with the intention of peace would help. You can even set different intentions for peace than listed below if you prefer. But most importantly, let us come together in peace, filling the world with Light columns.

“Let us dedicate ourselves to peace within ourselves, that wherever we go, we bring peace and we learn to find peace in all things.” 
- John Morton, D.S.S.

Monday September 19- Pray for Venezuela, especially our Venezuelan MSIA family there, see the country peaceful, filled with Light, prosperous, plentiful and bountiful food and resources, and safe.

Tuesday September 20- Pray for France, Europe, America and all those affected by terrorism, see the Light permeate all those who harbor hatred and let us see it be transmuted into love and Light. 

Wednesday September 21- International Day of Peace- Set intention for world peace, visualize it, see the peace, see the world filled with love and Light in the hearts of every person

Thursday September 22- Plant a Light column in your town, city, state, country and see its Light transmute all negativity into positivity, all hatred into love, and all unrest into peace.

Friday September 23- Send Light to at least one person you come into physical contact with who may have cut you in line at the grocery store, made a rude comment to you or someone you saw, or just someone you think could use more Light. See their lives being filled with grace, peace, love and Light. Send the Light to as many people as you wish- the more Light, the better! 

Saturday September 24- Do a random act of kindness today- this could be buying coffee for the next person in line, helping someone carry their groceries to the car, take ten minutes and call your mother and tell her how much you love her, make up with someone you have been fighting with, etc.  And as you do it, surround the action and all involved with Light. 

Sunday September 25- Make yourself into a walking Light column. Fill yourself with Light, know that peace is present and claim it, set your intention for you day, week, month, year to be a time of peace, and that you will try to do your part every day to bring the Light to the world, your world, and live the peace that is present. 

 

Please also feel free to use a fellow minister, Merrill Collins's, meditation music to assist your prayers for peace. You can listen here

 

“Everyone must be willing to sacrifice. Do you know what sacrifice means? The first part of the word "sacrifice" means holy. From that perspective, sacrifice no longer goes into suffering.

Sacrifice goes into holiness, into peace, into calmness, and the real willingness to give to others. We will actually sacrifice our time and give it to others. That's service.

We are here to serve each other.” 
- John-Roger, D.S.S.


(From: Serving & Giving, Gateways to Higher Consciousness by John-Roger, DSS with Paul Kaye, p. 164)

 

 

 

We are one in our loving for one another. 
In loving,
Skyler
 

Skyler Patton, HeartFelt Director

office: (323) 328-1925

Troubadour Travelers

“ If you want to experience the Christ in your everyday life, the answer is very simple: serve, serve, serve. I should say, serving, serving, serving. Serving means getting up and going and doing what's in front of you to do. I think we find the Christ more readily in that serving than we do in anything else. "

John-Roger, D.S.S. 

The Troubadour Travelers
by Danny Safron
 

     The Troubadour Travelers are a volunteer group of enthusiastic non-professional singers and musicians operating under the auspices of The HeartFelt Foundation. We provide a joy-filled, monthly performance at LA area convalescent homes for residents, staff and guests, who are free to sing-along.

Danny Safron, Matthew Van Fossan, Claire Smith (and Achilles the dog

Danny Safron, Matthew Van Fossan, Claire Smith (and Achilles the dog

     We started this service in the spring of 2014, and it came about after a Soul Singing (now called Singing for the Joy of It) participant, Matthew Van Fossan, asked me about a group of us that sang and played instruments at convalescent homes about ten years earlier. At that time we called ourselves the Traveling Troubadours. He had recently sung for his 90 year old grandmother when visiting her in Orlando, Florida, and then thought about doing a similar service here in LA. So Matthew and I decided to reach out to some nearby facilities, and a small group of us have been entertaining at those places monthly since March, 2014!

Claire Smith

Claire Smith

Matthew leads us vocally and on guitar as we sing a variety of popular rock, pop and folk songs, many from the 60's and 70's. The rest of us join in, and we have lyric sheets for around 30 songs that Matthew knows. Claire Smith is another enthusiastic regular who performs on her flute, drum and vocally, and plays some flute solos with CD backing tracks while Matthew, his guide dog Achilles, and I visit with residents about half way thru the hour. Claire also brings an assortment of percussion instruments for the rest of us to play.

Danny Safron, Matt Van Fossan, Peter Leighton, Claire Smith

Danny Safron, Matt Van Fossan, Peter Leighton, Claire Smith

Here's what Matthew had to say about his experience: "I love singing in a group. The people we sing for are so appreciative. I take breaks from singing to go around with Danny and connect with the residents, just to shake hands and say hi. While doing so I hold in my heart the intention to share the Light and loving. One time I was saying hello to an older woman who could barely speak. I was thinking about the Traveler's teachings and how I wanted to share them with her. She said out of nowhere in Spanish, "Yes, we know about these things, too”. I experienced very strongly the truth of what she said. It was one of those, “The Christ in me recognizes the Christ in you” moments.

Enjoy this video of the Troubadour Travelers in action!

The Troubadours outings are Light-filled and a lot of fun for the residents, staff and us, and they're held one Saturday a month from 10:45-11:45 am. We would love for YOU to join us, as it's a great way to share our loving while having fun! You can contact me at 818-203-1853 or via email, ds@safronsales.com for more information, and you may want to start such a group in your community.

God bless,
Danny Safron 

Thank you for the beautiful sharing, Danny, Matt and the rest of the Troubadour Travelers.


Sent with much Love and Light,

Skyler Maryl Patton HeartFelt Director and Paul Kaye HeartFelt President

Please share your stories of service you'd like featured in an upcoming HGN article to

Magic, Merriness and Santa, Too!

“ Ministering peace is the message of Christmas."

John-Roger, D.S.S. 

Please enjoy these two beautiful stories of HeartFelt Holiday Service Projects from San Antonio and Santa Monica.

 

 

Magic, Merriness and Santa, Too!
by Angel Harper

 

     The 2015 HeartFelt Christmas Project on Saturday was underway early in the day on top of the Santa Monica Pier, The first blessing of the day was the sun beaming down and the rain which had been forecasted was nowhere in sight. Steve Shepherd and Patti Rayner were on hand to work with all those who had come to donate their time and their supplies to create a most magical, happy, loving and fun day for families in need from all around the city. Soon the special stands and tents, started popping up, for the popcorn, the hot dogs, Don Francisco's coffee and hot chocolate, the petting zoo, arts and crafts and face-painting, the stage for the singers and dancers, Toyland, just to name some,  and the most special place -- for Santa.

     As the volunteers arrived they checked in to get their designated job for the day. Some were line managers, elves to give out toys, angels to clip the bracelets, face painters, popcorn makers, ticket givers, ticket takers, whatever was needed. 

     Whole families like the Rayners, Hubbards, Peppers, and Youngs have made this project a tradition and their way of inaugurating the season of giving.

     In a seeming blink of Santa's eye, Toyland was lit and overflowing with presents for kids from 0-17, the smells of popcorn, tacos, churros and hot dogs wafted across the pier along with the sounds of festive music. Santa was seated and the many families with their children were lining up already around the corner bursting to come in. Even Jim Harris, the Santa Monica Pier's guardian and manager, was on hand with a huge smile on his face. The pier's antique merry-go-round was ready and waiting for its little and big guests to have their free rides.

     Finally it was opening time and the families poured in. Where to go first? With their Toyland bracelets secured on their wrists some of the kids bee-lined for their toys, others took their time surveying and sampling all that they could. There was a veritable smorgasbord, all free and abundantly available. 

     The faces of wonder on all, whether older or younger, the whispered thank you's, the grateful "Merry Christmas" exclamations brought tears to many of our eyes giving us way more than we expected. We were honored to once again be on hand as witnesses to this miracle of loving and sharing and caring.

     Morning turned into afternoon. There was singing, dancing, eating, and over 1500 children had flowed through Toyland and had the chance to let Santa know their hearts' desires.  By the time the afternoon waned and only a few families remained, as if on cue the storm clouds started to move in. The event officially closed at 3:00pm and our hearty volunteers were on a mission to clean up and depart before the clouds unleashed a much-needed rain. Like the loaves and fishes the left-over toys, decorations and goodies were distributed to representatives of local charities to continue the blessing of giving for their holiday celebrations. As the first raindrops fell Steve Shepherd and Patti Rayner were still there, overseeing final bits and pieces of clean up, thanking all of us who had come to partake of this heartfelt blessing. Thank you, Steve, Patti, Karen Cicero, Neal Cohen, Kathy Grant, Michael Hubbard, Sonia Trejo, Marla Keesee, Bonnie Shatz, Andreea Vineyard and all who made this event possible!

Thank you for the beautiful sharing, Romo and Angel.
A Blessed Christmas to All.


Sent with much Love and Light,

Skyler Maryl Patton HeartFelt Director and Paul Kaye HeartFelt President

Please feel free to email feedback or your stories of service you'd like featured in an upcoming HGN article to serve@heartfelt.org

The Spirit of Christmas

“ Ministering peace is the message of Christmas."

John-Roger, D.S.S. 

Please enjoy these two beautiful stories of HeartFelt Holiday Service Projects from San Antonio and Santa Monica.

 

 

The Spirit of Christmas!
by Romo Gonzales
 

     Catch the Spirit of HeartFelt in San Antonio!  As I was spending time with friends and family in the Alamo city, the idea of a HeartFelt event during the holidays in San Antonio presented itself. I was able to collect donations of new toys from friends there, and with the strong support from the MSIA Community in Austin, HeartFelt was able to make a large donation to children with the misfortune of having to spend Christmas at the hospital. Minister Jennifer Halet was able to make the drive down from Austin and accompany me for the event. YAY!  Happy Holidays and Blessings to you all.

Happy Thanksgiving!

“ There is great value in being able to partake and thrive through challenging situations. Rather than choose to find fault or to criticize or judge, you can choose to find your gratitude and offer up your prayer of thanks to God in the Highest. Dwell upon gratitude until joy and harmony are your way of being. "

John Morton, D.S.S.

 

Enjoy the Thanksgiving quotes from our Travelers J-R and John Morton. May they help inspire us to be one in our loving and gratitude for all things.




Have a blessed Thanksgiving!

May God bless us all.


Sent with much Love and Light,

Skyler Maryl Patton HeartFelt Director

Please feel free to email feedback or your stories of service you'd like featured in an upcoming HGN article to serve@heartfelt.org