A month in the life of the club – news from Costa Rica
We are taking a moment to share some reflections on the last few weeks in the club and the diversity and richness of the legacy Master Moy entrusted to us.
We were able to celebrate the 9 Kings Festival with a week of chanting and appreciate the newly made altar, crafted by the brother of one of the participants, using Guanacaste, a very beautiful Costa Rican timber. Many participants have expressed great appreciation for the presence of such a beautiful feature in our home and our weekly chanting and the spirit of the place has been much enhanced.
Our first demonstration event was participation in World Heart Day in the capital of San Jose, where 25 participants helped members of the public enjoy the benefits of practicing these arts.
The following week we were invited demo and dinner at the museum of popular culture in Barva at the annual gathering of theology students for the National University that offers this program through remote learning. We were invited to share some aspects of Taoism and broaden the perspective of the course students. 40 students and guests gathered for a meal and we practiced some foundations and shared some stories about who we are and what the Society can offer as a path to Taoism in Action.
To celebrate Seniors Month, the “Palacio de Deportes”(Sport Palace) in Heredia invited us for a Taoist Tai Chi class for a group of seniors that come together weekly to exercise.
Although it was only one hour of introduction and practice, several mentioned important changes especially in bad habits in their posture and in experiencing more relaxation. The seniors brought food that we could give to the needy and we were able to provide additional during a weekly visit to support a local family whose mother is in need of surgery.
This month we were delighted to be able to celebrate our Autumn Moon banquet.
Our special guests were several doctors from different specializations, many of whom are already referring patients to us and the members of the Board of ADEP (retired teachers organization) from Tibás, who make it possible to offer the arts in that community through the rental of their organization’s facility.
Twenty-two participants experienced new roles in service to facilitate the event, joining eleven with more experience in hosting eighty-five for the evening. We enjoyed a full program with videos, slideshows, and testimonials to help share who we are and what we do around the world. Participants prepared prawn crackers, bread, rice, and desserts. Our local Chinese kitchen supplied the soup and main dishes to our specifications.
A successful raffle together with accordion, saxophone and guitar music from participants was part of a lovely celebration.
One of the ADEP Board members, who was just released from the hospital, was so motivated by the testimonials and particularly one of the participants who was caring for her table had recovered from the same liver condition challenges using these arts, that she signed up for classes the coming week. She joined in 2 classes and then the intensive in Tibas, after which she was able to walk unaided and take herself home. Yesterday she came to Heredia for the pain relief class and waxed eloquently about enormous health benefits she is already experiencing in less than two weeks and that her cloud of depression she arrived at the banquet with had completely dispersed and she is full of hope and appreciation.
Throughout the month the leadership has been diligently tackling the convoluted processes of changing from the Asociacion de Tai Chi Taoista to the Asociacion Fung Loy Kok Taoist Tai Chi, to align with the governance structure we have worldwide to ensure the safeguarding of the teaching for future generations. Each stage in the process from approval of a new constitution to opening new accounts and securing permission to use facilities requires multiple meetings with different government departments and notarized, accountant certified or other legal processes. After two years of iterations, we finally were able to get approval for sufficient documents to hold the AGM of transfer of activities and for all members to register as participants in the new Association. There are a few more weeks of formal registration of documents to follow but we are pleased to have finally reached the last stage of this process.
Throughout the month there were preparations for these activities: Participants using contacts to secure enough parking for our guests in a now very busy area of town and individuals visiting each of our invited guests. Our Treasurer led the drive to come to grips with the new National tax system and electronic receipts and new accountant requirements, with a small team working on new receipting and recording and reporting processes. Cleaning the clubhouse, promoting events, responding to inquiries and organizing transport all provided opportunities to work together in harmony
During the past week, there was much sharing about the banquet and the effect it had for the people who attended, leaving many with a great sense of accomplishment, joy, and gratitude for the opportunities that the Society offers, and looking forward to helping and developing in the future events.