Courage & Renewal Facilitator
Tauranga, New Zealand
I'm a rebel educator, co-founder and former principal of Matahui School near Katikati, New Zealand. (www.matahui.school.nz). As a Courage & Renewal facilitator, I design retreats for personal, professional and leadership development and renewal.
My name is Mennie Scapens. I’m a Courage & Renewal facilitator, based in New Zealand, prepared by the Center for Courage & Renewal in the US. I design and lead personal and professional Circle of Trust® retreats based on the work of Parker J. Palmer. If you haven’t checked out Parker’s work yet, then I encourage to do so. He’s a wonderfully wise writer, teacher and social activist.
My work is all about connection. It’s about highlighting and healing the growing sense of disconnection in our world - disconnection with our deeper self, with each other and our shared humanity, disconnection from nature and this wondrous planet we live on.
I rebel against the materialistic culture of Big is Better and More is Better that spawns bigger and bigger organizations with layers of bureaucracy that further fuel the separation from the personal, a separation that enables corporate decisions to be made with minimal consideration of their impact on people or the environment.
I rebel against this culture that drives us on to the treadmill of busyness and acquisition, and encourages us to measure our own and each other’s self-worth by how busy or productive we are, or by how we look or how much we possess. It’s a competitive culture that encourages us to look outward rather than inward, to be constantly comparing ourselves with others. It’s a culture that crowns ego as king and is the reason for the gnawing fear so many of us carry that we don’t measure up, that we’re never quite enough.
My work is about helping people develop the courage to show up in their lives and work as their authentic selves, to take a stand on the things they believe in and care deeply about, and to have the courage to face their fears and challenges and lead meaningful lives of integrity. Perhaps I'm a 'rebel rouser'.
In a Circle of Trust® we use poems, prose, images and other evocative things (we call them 'third things') to invite participants into a safe space for self-reflection and shared exploration. This poem by Ruth Forman, from Prayers Like Shoes, calls to the rebel in me:
why so afraid to stand up?
someone will tell you
but here is the truth
someone will always tell you
the ones we remember
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