Navigation Menu


Summer Training and Research Programs

Between 1965 and 1969/70 the three basic tasks of the Ecumenical Institute were Contextual Re-education, Community Re-formulation, and Spirit Re-motivation (Dolores Morrill, 1979. “The History of the Global Morement’s Assemble-ing,” New York Region). (See » page 101.)

The Summer Programs—whether training or research—were times when the previous year’s experimentations of different methods were synthesized, assimilated, crystallized, and frequently put in manual forms. For example, at the end of summer ’69, each group took one course of the Academy and wrote up the manual on it

(Jim Troxel, 1992).

Summer training programs started in 1965



The version of Dolores Morrill’s “Assemble-ing” timeline below shows how the focus of summer programs changed from Summer ’65 to Summer ’79.



* The » Years in the timeline above are clickable cross references to the related pages.

Summer programs included building and teaching a Religious Curriculum and a Cultural Curriculum, councils, and research programs.
1. Summer ’65. The first training summer focused on education and was primarily for teachers and college students.… A group of college students [came] to the West Side where they participated in 5th City workdays.… Fifty students were in a six-week work-study program, …“Beyond Protest.” The first training program was…an effort to fill in the blanks of our theoretical curriculum—religious and cultural. [I believe] David McCleskey led the six week session.…He pretty much spent the summer sitting outside the door of the McCleskey’s room going through books, choosing sections to be the seminar papers for the given courses, and writing the initial lesson
2. Summer ’66. We added clergy/local church and teacher groups and still had a college group, so that there were three groups.
3. Summer ’67. We again had the three groups—a really large session. That’s the summer Charles Lingo set up an Ur celebration each Saturday night.
4. Summer ’68. We tried to go low key, because we had been through the riots in April [following the Martin Luther King assassination]. So, we started at four o’clock in the morning (or some such time) and stopped after supper. I can’t remember whether there was a separate group for teachers or not, but there was not [a separate group] for college [students]—the whole assembly was simply divided into four groups, I believe.
5. Summer ’69. The Academy—two in the program center and an Urban Academy in Teutopolis, Illinois.
6. Summer ’70. The [Tactical System for the Local Church] Research Assemblies began in 1971.
7. Summer 1971. International Research Assembly (IRA) followed a year of research done by Religious Houses.
8. Summer 1972. The name changed to Global Research Assembly (GRA).
9. Summer 1973. A GRA again, and I don’t know how long that continued

(Doris Hahn, July 2014).

Summer 1965


Summer Training Form


First Summer Training Program


The Summer ’65 brochure used edgy language for its cover: “For vanguard cadres of university students. A crucial front in summer service projects.” The Summer ’65 brochure gives an overview of the summer’s “study curriculum and work tactics.”


Cultural Studies Curriculum


Completed and taught the Cultural Studies Curriculum. The central image of the curriculum focused on explorations surrounding the questions “What is the revolution going on in our world at this time?” and “What does it mean to be a creator of humanness in the midst of that?”


…. July 1965

Community Reformulation


Created Community Reformulation Methods and the Five Presuppositions of Community Reformulation.

Five Presuppositions of Community Reformulation


Presupposition 1. A community reformulation project must be conducted in a limited geographical area.

Presupposition 2. Community reformulation must deal with the depth human problem in the area.

Presupposition 3. The key to the identity building phase of community reformulation is the intentional use of symbols.

Presupposition 4. Community reformulation must deal with all of the critical problems of a community simultaneously.

Presupposition 5. Community reformulation must deal with all age levels in the community.


(Image, 1967)

Developed the Manifesto and Problemat.


When I arrived in ’65 we were operating out of the [model above] for planning and the one we used to create the 5th City model. The goals were simply a flip of the problemat, i.e. resolve the problem

(George West, 1992).

The Gridding Method 

The world grid (Global Grid) came into existence with the Nation and World course. The globe was…the context for action and all action was… interrelated. Gridding was a way of appropriating the world and describing the complex and dynamic inter-relationships of the given and emerging continents of the globe.…The globe was divided into three spheres and nine continents….[the grid] establishes the symbolic boundaries between the nine continents (Roundtable, Quarter II, 1981–82).


Gridding is a method for seeing rational patterns in geography. It developed as a way for a group to form a consensus in relationship to a particular geography and was a symbolic and practical step for taking responsibility for the geography (Methods Manual, p. 17).


The gridding sequence was:
————Parish (six in a micro)
—————-Stake (5,000 people—six in a community)
——————Block (200 people)



(Cultural Studies 1, Global Academy course notes, 1972)

The 5th City Preschool opened September 1965; received first grant then. Aimee Hilliard was the first director (September 1965–December 1966). The first faculty included Nancy Trevathan (Loudermilk), Ruth Marshall (Merrifield), Phyllis Christmas, Kaye Hayes (Kaze Gadway), and Rose West. Sarah Buss was on the list, because she had professional credentials (Doris Hahn 2013, James Addington 2017).


Keith Sanford was a young Texan with a literary bent (he was only with us a couple of years); Phyllis Christmas was a young African American nurse from the south side who was the first black member of the Ecumenical Institute. She was a crucial part of the team. James Addington was also part of the team. Phyllis and James were on the curriculum research group that met for about a year prior to launching the preschool and recruited most of the first class members and their parents. Aimee Hilliard and James visited and recruited Ruth and James Carter. James Addington was the designated social worker for the program and also a classroom teacher the first year, in addition to meeting monthly with parents ( James Addington 2017).


JWM and Fred Buss attended Vatican II as observers. Vatican II opened October 1962 and closed on the Feast of the Immaculate Conception in 1965 [December 8, 1965]. I think Fred Buss went with Joe to Vatican II. Joe was invited by our friend in the Chicago hierarchy, whose name I cannot recall at the moment. I can see his face but not his name (George West, March 2014). The first IMAGE was published in 1965 (Bill Grow, 1993).

RS-I was taught on the East coast and West coasts.