While we are one program, we have two houses: St. Columba House and Centennial House. Each has its own distinct identity.
Both houses come together for four retreats: the orientation retreat, an Advent retreat, a Lent retreat, and the closing retreat. In addition each house hosts the other for at least one visit during the year for joint formation and continuing education. Members of both houses will also share insights and reflections on their experiences with the larger Episcopal Service Corps community with required weekly posts to our blog, “Contemplatives with Altitude,” and our Facebook page.
We believe that Colorado ESC provides a unique and strong opportunity for young adults who seek to serve others and strive for the dignity of every human being while living in intentional community. We expect our corps members to be flexible, willing to engage in self reflection, creative practices and to have fun.
St. Columba House
St. Columba House is located near the historic Baker neighborhood just south of downtown Denver. St. Columbans work in a variety of agencies addressing the needs of the urban poor, from food accessibility to basic services for homeless youth and job training for underemployed women. Corps members living in St. Columba House can expect to share a bedroom with another corps member for the year.
The weekly rhythm of St. Columba House is shaped by working in a partner agency Monday –Thursday and spending Fridays in formation. Formation Fridays usually begin with yoga and morning prayer and follow a curriculum exploring a wide range of topics with a theological and spiritual lens.
Afternoons are spent in spiritual direction, service or checking something off our bucket list. St. Columbans develop together a community rule of life and a daily practice of night time prayer, using various forms of prayer together. St. Columbans also spend regular time in group therapy to aid in skill building and personal development.
Wednesday night is community night when St. Columbans host dinner, conversation and prayer. St. Columbans are expected to attend church at St. Peter and St. Mary Episcopal Church in the Baker neighborhood, where they will find a welcoming and inclusive community of worshipers.
Steamboat Springs is a magnificent place to live, serve, and grow. It is located in the northwest mountains of Colorado, about a 2 ½ hour drive from Denver, and is home to ranchers, business owners, service providers, outdoor enthusiasts, and world class athletes. It is an interesting mix of small town familiarity and vacation destination.
Centennial House is located on the “mountain side” of Steamboat Springs, within easy walking distance of Mt. Werner and the free bus throughout town. This comfortable and cozy home is nestled in a neighborhood composed of singles and families of all ages, as well as some seasonal rental units during busy winters.
With a high cost of living, average family incomes stretch to make ends meet. However, Steamboat Springs is home to over 100 non-profit organizations addressing a variety of human, environmental and social services, and Centennial House members contribute to the health of the community by serving 35 hours per week with these organizations.
In addition to their work sites, members of the house meet weekly on Tuesday mornings and on one Friday per month for formation. These are times of prayer, teaching and reflection, including occasional service projects and “bucket list” field trips and events. An additional 4 hours per month are set aside to meet with a spiritual discernment team and a spiritual director, provided by the program. In addition, house members are expected to take responsibility for their own formation by practicing daily personal and community prayer.
At least two Sundays per month, house members will join the congregation of Saint Paul’s in corporate worship in the Episcopal tradition. They are also encouraged to join in corporate worship in their own tradition and to explore other traditions. Steamboat Springs has a number of established traditional churches and vibrant emerging faith communities.