Since 2004 Reba Place Fellowship has seen significant changes in its membership, average age, and day-to-day life. Several nine-month interns in 2004 became two year interns who evolved into the nucleus of the current large pool of 30-40 interns, apprentices, and practicing members who live in the Reba neighborhood and share in RPF’s life, meetings, and projects.
This growth at RPF reflects widening interest in Christian community, especially among young people. Many contact or visit Reba in search of an alternative to the pervasive individualism, consumerism, injustice and violence of the modern world. For years Reba’s Cana Household has held a potluck on Monday evening, followed by a seminar discussion on various aspects of Christian discipleship. 2004-2007 saw expanding numbers at these Monday evening events – so much so that in the spring of 2007, Monday potlucks were spread out into five different Reba households followed by a regrouping at the RPC Ministries Center for seminar time. Another part of Reba’s growth has been the 2006 establishment of a new household of young people – “The Patch” – at 720 Reba Place .
Some of the earlier-arriving interns began work on a used bicycle shop in 2005, which has become the well-established Recyclery Collective. 2006 and 2007 also saw five RPF-related young couples get engaged and married, some adding to the long tradition of “Reba weddings” in the RPC Meetinghouse.
In the time since 2004, members have worked toward clearer understanding of RPF finances, including member spending and cost of living, common work and RPF businesses, inherited funds, and RPF employment of non-members. In 2007 several community leaders formed a “business council” for the further pursuit of RPF common work and business.
In 2006 the RPF retreat house at Camp Lake was demolished, with the new retreat house built and finished in late 2007. The community gathered there (“Emmanuel Lodge”) in January 2008 to officially bless and commission the house for community gatherings, holidays, and retreats.
In August 2007, Reba Place Fellowship and Church celebrated a great milestone – its fiftieth anniversary! Five hundred people from Reba’s past and present (and perhaps future) gathered for a weekend of sharing, memories, stories, music, and dance. It was a time of great joy as well as healing for many people who had poured their lives into Reba Place Fellowship and Church over its first fifty years.
Currently Reba Place Fellowship is feeling a wealth of life and vitality stemming from both hard lessons learned over fifty years and the excitement of many new younger people in its midst. As of January 2008 the Fellowship consisted of 32 covenant members, six novice members, seventeen practicing members, and nine apprentices.