L’Arche Fredericton (Project)
The story of Willow Tree Community starts with seeds planted in different places and at different times. Seeds were planted in some members of the founding group who lived in existing L’Arche communities. Others had seeds planted by having family members living in L’Arche communities, seeds that were “watered” when they attended a retreat given by Jean Vanier. These folks and others were brought together by a note in a church bulletin calling a meeting of people interested in seeing a L’Arche community in Fredericton.
From then to now
In response to the question “How do you start a L’Arche community?”, we learned that it is important first of all to foster community. This has been our guiding light since our inception, during which time we have gathered monthly for a time of fellowship, activities, prayer and refreshment. Along the way we developed a name (Willow Tree Community), a mission statement and a strategic plan. Willow Tree Community became incorporated, received charitable status from the Canada Revenue Agency, and was approved as a “project” of L’Arche. We continue to use the name Willow Tree Community for our community gatherings, but officially we are now L'Arche Fredericton Inc.