Last week we went to a midweek service. The church where I grew up is having once a month services of Forest Church. These are services to encourage connection with the natural world (I note that the next one at the end of August is to celebrate the coming harvest). The July service was held out at a wetland area at this park and invited participants to an experience of Sensio Divina.
Some readers will have heard of (and/or experienced) Lectio Divina, a Spiritual Practice that allows one to sink into a piece of Scripture. Sensio Divina is the same basic idea, except instead of a piece of text one uses some sensory input as the focus of meditation and reflection. Here are JPEG scans of the order of service, which includes a description of the process:
BEfore and after we went out for a walk we paused to center ourselves while listeing to the singing of Galai Star. Then we went out to walk the boardwalk (or other trails in the area) and see what drew us in and drew us to God's PResence.
Some pictures from the evening:
There were two things that I took away from the worship.
1) I would love to do something similar here. Every once in a while someone expresses the thought (which I have had and shared more than once) that it would be nice to do a "different" type of worship once in a while. My vision is an evening worship once a month that uses a variety of different worship experiences. This could be one of them,
2) I had forgotten how wonderful it is to have quiet time by the water. When I worked at Camp I would frequently go out and stroll/sit/pray/sing on the beach in the late evening, after all were in their cabins. When I was in seminary I would periodically go for a walk or a bike ride (season dependent) along the South Saskatchewan River. There is something about water that just holds me (which is a little odd since I am not a swimmer by any means -- I float somewhat like a rock). It reminded me that I need to be better/more intentional at making time to be outdoors in the quiet and allow myself to feel the presence of God.