The ‘Sometimes Unseen.’
August can seem to be a time when The Chapel steps back for a month and takes things a little slower. Some of the organisers of our activities take a bit of a breather and allow themselves a time to relax and refresh. After all, there are not many places of worship where you’ll find the person preparing worship on a weekday evening after work, leading a workshop on the Saturday, delivering the worship on the Sunday before then finding themselves tending the garden or cleaning the eaves in the following days.
So during August, some of us restrict ourselves to doing a few of the more practical things. And this month, a gentle stroll through the gardens would have found Libby, Vanessa, Marion and Sam at work on the beds, grasses and hedges (we wait until August to do the hedges lest we upset the nesting birds) and Stuart and Duncan fixing the chapel spotlights, cleaning the algae from the walls and hosing down the valley in the roof (Duncan has just retired from the fire brigade and did comment that his first job at the chapel still involved ‘ladders and hoses!’). There are probably countless other hours put in by others whose voluntary work for us is often the ‘sometimes unseen.’
We are grateful to everybody who lends a helping hand to keep the chapel active and in good material order. It takes time, money and most importantly tender loving care – the first two of which we have some of at varying degrees of across the year – the latter of which we have in spades (and forks and hedge clippers).
As part of our social action enterprises, Libby and Marion have been supporting with the settlement of the first two refugee families into Horsham district. This involves buying and delivering food and offering practical help where needed. It is coordinated by the Horsham Refugee Support Group and we thank Libby and Marion for their time in representing us out there in the needy community.
Duncan offers some reflections on our recent meditation workshop.
‘On Saturday 30th July we welcomed Richard Bober from The Meditation Fellowship to lead a meditation workshop for us at The Chapel. Our group of 8 consisted of regulars from our monthly meditation group and some new faces.
Richard said right from the outset that he intended to take things slowly, which is precisely what he did. Through his gentle guidance we explored the basics of meditation. A series of short meditations enabled us to consider our posture, to be comfortable and yet aware and open. We then worked on our breath, considering how each of us can connect and what works best for us as individuals. We also considered our attitude or approach to meditation and Richard emphasised three important aspects, or skills, namely: non-judgement, patience and acceptance.
The two hour session was punctuated by some walking meditation in the churchyard. I think one local couple walking back from the high street wondered if the dead had risen when they encountered 8 people slowly walking around different parts of the site. But all was well.
I found the workshop offered me the opportunity to re-connect and review my own practice, which was very helpful. And from our conversations afterwards I think others found Richard’s session accessible and benefited in different ways. I hope we will be able to tempt Richard back in the future to run another workshop. Some leaflets about The Meditation Fellowship are available in the chapel, and their next retreat is November (Nov 4th 5th 6th) at Salisbury.’
Thank you for organising and reflecting on this event Duncan.
Come the autumn The Chapel will be back in full swing with our mission to offer the community events and activities centred around the themes of creativity, compassion, contemplation and community. Check our calendar and the tabs above for more details and we’ll see you there.