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Reclaiming Ritual: A Workshop Series for Women & Queer Ex-Catholics

March 9 @ 1:00 pm

|Recurring Event (See all)

An event every week that begins at 1:00 pm on Saturday, repeating until March 9, 2024

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Join other women and queer ex-Catholics for an opportunity to engage with ritual on our own terms! Together, we’ll explore our Catholic upbringing, our current relationship to spirituality, and what we’d like from communal spiritual practice going forward. Led by experienced facilitators, we’ll practice creating rituals on our own terms.

We’ll use theater as a way to engage in dialogue, dream of new possibilities, and create together, but previous theater experience isn’t required. Most importantly, we’ll be centering on joy, community, collective liberation, and imagination throughout!


Connections to spirituality and community are strongly associated with personal well-being and investment in the well-being of others. But many people, especially women and queer people, have been discriminated against by their religious communities of origin. Opportunities to engage in communal spirituality with a real sense of agency and belonging can be hard to find.

We’ll practice creating intentional rituals that actually resonate with everyone involved, so that we can connect with spirituality and community on our own terms.


We will gather:

Saturday, Feb 10
Saturday, Feb 17
Saturday, Feb 24
Saturday, March 2
Saturday, March 9
From 1pm-4pm at CUNY School of Professional Studies at 119 31st Street. Snacks will be provided!

Were you raised Catholic?
When asked about your faith, do you find yourself saying you’re a Lapsed Catholic, Ex-Catholic, Doubting Catholic, Cafeteria Catholic, Culturally Catholic, or Recovering Catholic?
Do you find it hard to talk about that part of your life with your friends who don’t have the same background?
Have your experiences with the Catholic Church been complicated, maybe…not always great? Are you interested in exploring that with others?
Has this left you without meaningful rituals and communal opportunities to engage in spirituality?
Are you intrigued by the idea of co-creating new, intentional rituals within an inclusive and compassionate community?
If you said “yes “to any of these questions, if you’re someone who was raised Catholic but doesn’t feel totally at home attending Church, this workshop is for you!

We’re focusing on women and queer people, really anyone who is not a straight, cis-man, because we want to center those whose identities were not fully valued by the institutional church.


We will use theatre conventions, like games, physical images, movement, and songs to:

Build community
Explore questions about Catholicism and its impact on our spirituality now
Create a group ritual that we can perform at the end. The purpose of the ritual and all of the practices that go into it will be decided throughout the workshop by the group!
Theatre and spiritual rituals greatly overlap. There’s storytelling, song, symbolism. During this workshop, you will not be “acting” in front of an audience, and you will not be forced to participate in anything. We will invite you into some theatre-inspired activities, but we will also be following the interests of the group–ex. If people like singing, we’ll sing. Otherwise, we won’t!

Most of all, we will be having FUN together!


This workshop series is created and hosted by applied theatre facilitators Amanda Trajano, Ana Rubio, and Roisin Goebelbecker’s as their Masters Thesis in Applied Theatre through CUNY School of Professional Studies. We will be writing about the project for our thesis. All identifying information about participants will be changed.



Please try to be in attendance for every workshop. To build the sense of community and trust necessary to build co-intentional rituals, it’s important to have consistent presence. That being said, we respect and honor your lives! If you have to miss one session, or if something comes up we understand.


Please fill out the Google form if you’re interested in participating!

We will be capping the workshop at 20 participants, so if we surpass that number we will let you know.

If you have more questions before signing up, feel free to reach out to us at roisin.goebelbecker@gmail.com, amanda.trajano13@gmail.com, and anitarure@gmail.com. We’re happy to also hop on a call to talk through it!

We know that was already a lot of info, but if you have more questions, we have some more answers! 😊


👭A little more about who we are:
Ana is a Colombian woman, Amanda is a first-generation Filipina-American woman, and Roisin is a Irish-American woman. We are all in our 20’s. Amongst the three of us, we have backgrounds in theatre, cultural studies, and arts administration. We are not clergy, or interested in becoming so within an institutional Church. We all have different understandings of spirituality. We just were all raised Catholic and interested in exploring how that identity intersects with our applied theatre work.

For the last several years, we’ve studied how to facilitate experiences that engage participants in reflecting on their reality and rehearsing social change through theatre.


📝What’s the background of this project?

This workshop series is a participatory action research project being completed for Amanda, Ana, and Roisin’s Masters thesis in Applied Theatre through CUNY School of Professional Studies.

Applied theatre– an umbrella term used to describe the application of theatre to other fields (education, community organizing, etc.) towards the goal of collective liberation.
Participatory action research–a community reflects on how things are done now, brainstorms how they can change that, and then takes action to make that change happen!
We will be writing about the project for our thesis. All identifying information about participants will be changed.


🆓 Is there payment involved?
The workshops are entirely free, since they are being conducted for a masters thesis. There will be snacks at all workshops, but otherwise, we are unable to offer compensation due to a limited budget. However, we do not want financial issues to hold people back from participating if interested, so please reach out if something like a MetroCard may make it possible for you to participate.


🤔 What do you mean by spirituality?

Well, it’s really up to you! We mean it in the broadest sense–the connection to something bigger than our individual selves, something transcendent. That can be God, or it can be community, love, energy, whatever resonates with you. We’re looking forward to exploring this question with other people who were raised in the Catholic tradition.

<h4>🛑 I have a really complicated relationship to the Catholic Church… will I be safe in this workshop?</h4>
Safety is something we cannot promise, because we don’t know what safety means for you. We will, however, not tolerate any hate, be sensitive to experiences of trauma, and hold each other accountable to shared community agreements. You will not have to participate in or share anything that you don’t want to, no questions asked. And we will set up care stations with comforts for anyone to step out of the room if they need to.


We believe it can be valuable to share stories of common oppression together, and we hope to create that space. We will be using art as a way to slightly distance ourselves from the raw story, however, since we are not counselors or dramatherapists and will not have any on site.


Also check out other Arts Events in New York, Theatre Events in New York, Workshops in New York.

Tickets for Reclaiming Ritual: A Workshop Series for Women & Queer Ex-Catholics can be booked here.