Archive for April 2011

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CURRENT NEWS!!!< strong>Invite Only – First Meeting of HeartSoul Ekonomia Institute at Jordanville

Picasso: Woman With A Fan

How the Prodigal Daughter Course was Born, and Birthed the HeartSoul Ekonomia Institute

The Prodigal Daugther course teaches household management skills using tools such as project managment planning, bookkeeping principles and techniques, and filing system skills. The Prodigal Daugher Course, was created about 4 years ago in Eugene, Oregon, and went under a different name called the St. Xenia Women’s LifeSkill Management Course.

On the 5th of January 2011, xenia lynn teresa williams, decided to develop and start a business she was challenged to create by Fr. Gerasimos of St. George the Great Martyr Greek Orthodox Church.  She had been meeting weekly with him to discuss the direction her life was taking. She had complained that she felt there was a need to develop a program to help women such as herself who had experienced domestic trauma in the lives, and who wanted to learn some basic house management skills. She started describing what it was like to emerge from being depressed and enslaved from post traumatic stress disorder symptoms, only to fine one’s life’s skills were not so great. She was surprised when he told her to go home and create her own program. That was what she did, she showed it to him, and they were in the process of creating a facilitating group, when she was asked to work on a political campaign and to move to Washington D.C. to do so. With his blessing and with the blessing of her spiritual mother, Abbess Eufraxia, she did so. After work on that campaign, she moved to North Carolina to live with her mother, and then hitched hiked to New York, City to attend the Mother of the Sign Cathedral where the Kursk Icon was.

While attending St. Sergius of Radonezh English Mission, she started a women’s group where women studied the lives of the saint. While her efforts to begin a Bible Study at the Cathedral met with opposition, after about a year, three awesome young men, Daniel, Gabriel and Sergei, help to organized what is now a successful Bible Study with the blessing of Metropolitan Hilarion and with the leadership participation of Fr. Nikolai.

After much trials and tribulation, ms. williams decided to return to her idea of starting a women’s group to learn household management and life skills, and the HeartSoul Ekonomia Institute was brought into existence.

About ten women will be present at the meeting at Jordanville. What is cool about these women, (yes, I did use the word cool)
is that they are practicing Orthodox women, who have at least 5-25 years in the field of social work counseling, drug and alcohol counseling, insurance, banking, childhood education, project managment planning, pilates, and bookkeeping counseling, professors and authours. They have operated their own businesses, have been active in the Orthodox and surrounding communities thus they bring extraodinary variety and wealth of experience to the HeartSoul Ekonomia Institute. They are in their forties, some are married, and have support of their husbands, and some are single with children. This is important because we want to include students who are married, divorced, single with or without children, women from at risk behaviours, women who survived domestic violence or childhood abuse, refugees, and displaced housewives. Anybody can come an take the Prodigal Daughter Course which will teach household managment skill, but we want to include the aforemention population!

A few women have been with this project from the beginning and this meeting is so that all involved can meet each other, and share their experiences, and roll up their sleeves and get to work, expressing Faith in this very active way. They are women who see the need for such an organization as the HeartSoul Ekonomia Institute; at the meeting they will get a closer look at the creator /founder of the HeartSoul Ekonomia Institute, and also a closer look at those that have pledge their services as suppport providers. The meeting is essentially a get to know you meeting, where the outline of the Institute and its objectives and services will be discussed. The goal is to develop team comaraderie. There will be a second meeting in August, and that one will be a 3 day weekend, designed by with the help, hopefully, of OutWard Bound. (Mountain-Wall Climbing or Horseback riding!) The women who are coming to the meeting immediately understood the concept of offering to women a safe and nurturing place to learn new skills for the home via addressing the emotional side of the learning experience by providing a support system that encouraged women to learn how to take care of themselves in healthy ways. They were also excited about how these skills could transfer into the work environment and also how they could help women learn skills that will enable them not only to enter the workforce if they wanted to , but to start up their own businesses. HSEKI concentrates on improving home management skills because we understand that the home is where solid economic practices are learnt and taught, and that these lessons will move out into the larger community. “The home economy is the hearth of any nation’s economy”, Williams stated emphatically.

women working, rodriguez hilario

These women will be the backbone of the HeartSoul Ekonomia Institute, and their work behind the scene to develop classes, workshops and seminars for women, their families and their communities will really speak to their dedication to the effort.  Besides the women who will be present at the meeting the HeartSoul Ekonomia Institute is pleased to have on board as a provider, Roberta Rose Kirschenbaum, director of the Rolates Pilates Center here in New York, and also Manny Colon, owner of Bookkeeping Center, Inc, also here in New York.  They both have a long presence in the New York City area providing social services through volunteering to at risk populations, and low income populations. Willams said that “we welcome them on board as valued providers and fellow innovators with what HSEKI is trying to acheive in the lives of the women it seeks to serves”.

The PraxisQuarterly Literary Review, is a way that HSEKI, supports the creative side of women, and provides a forum for women to showcase their fiction and poetry writing skills, as well as their visual art skills. Once a year, Spring Edition, submissions will be open to both men and women. 

It is hard for start-ups with an innovative approach to raise funds to begin their efforts, and the institute does admit, its approach is quite innovative.  It will combine cultural anthropological research, counseling, and  educational resources in one entity. Its unique perspective that embraces the spirituality of the human being, that structural aspect of human beings that inform how they adapt to stresses in their environoment, is an essential component of its approach to helping women learn to help themselves. We believe that adaptation happens, and that it can happen for the good of society or for the worse.   Williams stated ” that when women can access their selves in a holistic manner, they will be able to make better decisions that are good for them, that are good for their families, and good for their communities. We hope that everyone who reads this will want to participate in our fundraiser and submission acquistion contest.  We will greatly appreciate this support from our community”. 


The HeartSoul Ekonomia Institute exists solely to provide cultural research and educational social services to women, their families, and their communites.  We want to offer low cost services and to be able to fund our research efforts.  We created this petition to help us in our start-up efforts in this, and want to conduct our first classes in Fall, 2011, and also to be able to launch our magazines, which will help to keep costs low for the students.  By entering the PraxisQuarterly Literary Review, you will have another venue to showcase your work, introduce yourself to an appreciative audience, and you will be provided a very unique and needed service to women, their families and their communites.
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Please check out the  Online Fundraising/Manuscript Solicitation Guidelines.

Submit Your ArtWork and Short Fiction Now! $5.00 per submission or go to PraxisQuarterly Literary Contest Page, and Donate any amount!

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