While I have participated on various commissions, councils and ministries since my early teens and even studied organizational (administration) and community development (planning) in graduate school, training in organizing remained a gap for me. As it turned out, most of my career ended up in research and providing resources and guidance for those in public service, mainly the public sector.
As I was able to make more time and space for unpaid work, activism and partnerships, first with the Global Catholic Climate Movement and then in our state, I continued to gravitate toward and center my contributions around policy best practice research and developing written resources.
Gradually, a couple of things became significant guideposts in prioritizing work and realizing how it might be accomplished. For years I had been operating from “what can we do together?” – finding win-win-win-win’s around a policy table (there were many to find, as a facilitator, researcher, and analyst!). Now, I added: “two by two.”
The Christians among us are familiar with “where two or more are gathered,” God is there. In Mark 6:7 we hear that he sent out disciples “two by two” and in Luke 10:1 we hear, “After this the Lord appointed seventy-two others and sent them two by two ahead of him to every town and place where he was about to go.”
There are many reasons to go “two by two.” Among my own inspirations, ideas or priorities, if someone else shares one of these, it may be a go. We may really be able to do something together. It’s worth devoting more time now. One must also arrange one’s life and priorities to leave space to be able to jump in with the work to support the effort when this gift and window, “now is the time,” emerges. It’s a privilege to do this. Two also provides companionship, safety, conviviality and the opportunity to learn and reach others on the journey. It’s now more practical, more feasible, and we can cover more ground together. Pace will need to be altered and other insights and priorities included, but it’s all good! Our breath, our inspiration, the ground we cover is in common.
Marie Venner, Call to Action and Catholic Network
Metro Denver Faith Leaders Caucus