e-News from Vaughan Park
Tēnā koutou katoa. Greetings to you all.
SPRINGTIME has arrived in Aotearoa New Zealand! It’s a season when creativity begins to emerge again and like the song birds who return to our shores at this time, our hearts begin to sing again too. Visions, dreams and yearnings for the future unfold. Hope and trust in what the future promises, and a renewed sense of loving and being loved can warm our wintered hearts.
We’ve got some unique, inspiring and wonderful opportunities coming up in our calendar. Three amazing trail-blazing women from around the globe will be at Vaughan Park this Spring, to share their knowledge, insights, creativity and wisdom with us:
Dr. Sally Longley from Australia: Spiritual Director, retreat leader, Giver of the Ignatian Exercises and facilitator of labyrinth walks and labyrinth retreats.
Mary Jane Miller from Mexico: artist, master Iconographer, teacher, and current Scholar in Residence.
Professor Nicola Slee from the UK, poet and acclaimed author in the fields of feminist and practical theology, spirituality and prayer.
So come to our beautiful space and place and nurture your Springtime heart...
Deepening our faith through Thought and Image with Mary Jane Miller. Thursdays 3rd, 10th, 17th and 24th October, 7 – 8.30pm.
This four week series promises lively contemporary discussions on iconography, a tradition that dates back 1,500 years. The presentations will explore the meaning and message of ancient icons and what they have to say about contemporary life.
The series begins with Feast Day Icons, followed by the relationship of Mary and Jesus, then includes St. Francis, Women in Iconography and new directions in iconography. The series will represent ancient work, contemporary iconographers and Mary Jane’s own collections. You will explore how icons are painted as a prayer form and why contemplating ancient image has always been central to religious experience.
These are free presentations and a light supper will follow.
Thursday 17th October, 10am - 4pm
A quiet day with Professor Nicola Slee.
Join Nicola on a reflective walk into the woods of deep Sabbath. This quiet day will draw on Nicola’s recent book, which weaves together poetry (her own and that of Wendell Berry, in his decades long oeuvre of Sabbath poems), journaling and reflections on the challenges of finding Sabbath in an increasingly driven and workaholic culture – both inside and outside church.
Nicola will share something of her own struggles to make and keep Sabbath, and something of the gift that the rich notion of Sabbath can offer us in a variety of different ways, if we are willing to enter into the alluring and scary place of not-doing. There will be opportunities for quiet, creative writing, prayer and conversation. Each participant will also be gifted a signed copy of Nicola’s book, Sabbath: The hidden heartbeat of our lives.
Friday 8th November 6pm - Sunday 10th November 4pm
With Dr. Sally Longley.
Labyrinths offer ways to pray that engage our whole beings, and not just the top five centimetres of our heads. Have you ever wondered what a labyrinth was for, or wanted to make your own labyrinth? Come and pray as you and others make labyrinths in the sand and then walk them, using some of the passages from John’s gospel as a guide. There will be the opportunity to make both the classic and the Chartres labyrinths, and to explore the ways they offer different prayer experiences. (If the weather is too poor, participants will make and then use a temporary indoor labyrinth).
Toff Chav by Miles Hadley
Miles Hadley, (Scholar in Residence 2016) was engaged in a writing project when he stayed with us. His book, Toff Chav, was published last year and he emailed us recently,
“This is a quick email to say that the novel attempt, Toff Chav won a bronze medal in the urban fiction genre category for 2019 through the Readers' Favorite award contest! It couldn't have been done without all the support from the VP team.”
Well done Miles and many congratulations from all of us!
Tembo's Roar: a Spiritual Journey of Discovery by The Rev. Iain Gow
The Rev. Iain Gow has had his second book, Tembo’s Roar: a Spiritual Journey of Discovery recently published. It’s a story for children and for grown-ups too, telling the adventures of Tembo, the lion, who discovers his identity and learns the values that will guide him in life. Iain writes, “Like Tembo, may we all discover that, if we are brave, when all is said and done and the fight is over, the gentle way of grace and trust will lead us home.”
Many thanks for sharing Tembo’s wonderful story with us. Congratulations!
We look forward to seeing you soon
Ma Io koutou e manaaki, e tiaki, i nga wa katoa.
May your God bless you each and every day.