The long now is, of course, the very best place to engage with God.
There were many many opportunities across the weekend – some obvious, some completely unexpected (but for the fact that Greenbelt is such a thin place, encountering God is never really unexpected).
God-filled moments for me included
sitting in Centaur on Friday night listening to Christopher Norton (Mr Microjazz – just think of that! - I used that with many a piano pupil once upon a time) and Robin Thompson-Clarke playing Arvo Part's Spiegel im spiegel
a window opening in my soul as +Gene Robinson reflected on Jesus words to the disciples
“There is so much I would like to tell you but you are not able to bear it…But when the Holy Spirit comes she will lead you into all truth”...a reminder that the sometimes unbearably slow learning processes of the Church have been expected from her beginnings
much of the Sunday worship, where I was surprised by tears as each member of our small group, among the thousands took it in turns to use olive oil from the Holy Land to anoint the hand of their neighbour and to pray a blessing on them.
the peace and holiness that I characterised everything I attended in New Forms, (always a wonderful place to be) specially Blessed’s Mass of the Trinity (I could have spent far longer just sitting with God before that blue lit altar) and the Long Worship put together by emerging communities Dream, Grace, feig, and Safespace
I found 2 stations here particularly powerful.
One consisted of many many cards, each bearing a single word…This was liturgy, the work of the people – and we were invited to arrange the cards to express our own prayers, our own situations and post them on the wall.
Elsewhere, we could write a letter to our future selves, with hopes, dreams, reminders of wisdom encountered, moments to cherish from this year’s Festival. The letters will be posted on to us in early March. I was quite tough with myself – so can only hope it doesn’t arrive on a difficult day.
Being told off by oneself if everyone else is feeling fierce might not be the best thing, though the substance of my letter (the ongoing question of time, boundaries and space to be human) is something I undoubtedly need to work on...