At a HUB gathering you'll be invited into the holy space where stories - personal, communal and
biblical - connect. You'll be given a chance to share - to tell your own story and be respectfully
heard by your neighbors. You'll be given a chance to listen - to hear the stories of others.
You'll be given a chance to explore where your story and the stories you hear, connect.
First Presbyterian Church, Columbiana launched THE HUB in 2016 with a focus on spirituality and
life skills education for adults. In the years following we discovered and began to focus on, the
power of story to transcend divisions, confront bias, bring healing and ultimately hear anew the
gospel of Jesus Christ as our framing narrative.
THE HUB welcomes all stories, including those challenging "traditional" systems and structures.
We welcome all storytellers regardless of religious tradition, race, class, gender, ethnicity, political
leanings or sexual orientation. While individual stories may challenge, THE HUB does not tell
participants what to think or believe. We do, however, request all at gatherings commit to the
discipline of respectful listening.
An intentional spiritual gathering rooted in the inviting, hearing and sharing of story - biblical, communal and personal, the HUB uses the spiritual practice of story to transcend divisions, confront bias, bring healing and ultimately hear anew the gospel of Jesus Christ as our framing narrative.
To fully experience the immense gift granted to us by God through story, we must seek out and accept the gifts of our neighbors' stories. Story is a gift of God for the people of God.
The HUB Core consists of those yearning to connect their stories, and their neighbors' stories, to the gospel story. Core participants also help plan and lead HUB gatherings. The Core meets at 7:00 on the first and third Wednesday evening of each month at First Presbyterian, Columbiana and on Zoom. Core gatherings include sharing scripture, telling stories around the shared scripture, praying for each other and eating cookies. Its sort of like church, sort of like a Bible study, but not really like either.
A series of public storytelling
gatherings as well as workshops to
help potential storytellers shape and
frame their stories. Spoken Threads gatherings
are open to everyone. Anyone who wishes
is allowed to share a story. Gatherings
happen at locations around the community.
HUB sponsored community-wide worship services and gatherings provide space for those whose stories include grief and loss to intersect with the healing story of the gospel.
The HUB sponsors and facilitates in person and online retreats and workshops, inviting participants to dive deep into the healing story of the gospel, probe their own stories and receive the gift of story from fellow participants. Contact us for more information about how we could facilitate a retreat or workshop for your group.
As HUB Coordinator, Jo provides ongoing leadership of the HUB Core, writes and leads MidWeek Pause and anchors THE HUB's prayer life with her broadly inclusive while still deeply rooted spirituality. A certified spiritual director, Jo is retired from a 40-year career as a Catholic school teacher.
Pastor, First Presbyterian Columbiana
Pastor Fritz provides big picture leadership for THE HUB, helping it hear community voices, develop new forms of worship and work through the challenges of identity and mission. Fritz has over 20 years experience leading Presbyterian congregations.
Both Jo Barto and Pastor Fritz are available for retreat leadership and consultation. Jo Barto is also available for individual spiritual direction.