Like a Tree Planted By Streams of Water: contemplative prayer in the forest (12+)

with Leanne Wild

This workshop will use the practice of silent attentiveness to/in the woods as well as practices and texts from various ancient forms of christian contemplative prayer to provide an opportunity for prayer (possibly unlike anything you’ve called prayer before!) in and among the community of the forest: our fellow created beings. It could be called ‘lectio natura’ (something like ‘lectio divina’, an ancient method of prayer through silent attentiveness to specific words of scripture): we will ‘read’ from the book of creation. As we slowly wander a path through the woods we will alternately listen (to short readings; questions or prompts), perceive, meditate, share observations, walk, stand and sit.

about the facilitator

Leanne has been a community development worker, trainer of camp leaders, writer, high school drama teacher, grief support facilitator, and theology student, and has been a lover of both the woods and Jesus since she can remember. Her recent experience of homeschooling led to new ways of seeing and being in the woods; and her experience of a Theology course in Contemplative Prayer led to new ways of knowing and understanding prayer. Together, these discoveries have opened a space for praying in a way that is instinctive, gentle and powerful, and she has been sharing it with others whenever she can.

Watershed Moments – Learning about the Water Around Us (All ages welcome, though little ones will benefit from being with an older carer.)

with Sabrina Chiefari + Leah Watkiss

Incorporating the “Project: Wet – Blue River” activity, this active session will encourage participants to better understand how water moves around them and what lasting – often unseen – consequences (whether positive or negative) our activities can have. While respecting and being sensitive to different world-views, group discussion will include questions around the more intrinsic relationship Christians have with this essential element.

about the facilitators

Sabrina (she/her/elle) is a Catholic Environmental Educator from Tkaronto/Toronto. As Creation Care Animator for the Sisters of St. Joseph of Toronto, she’s a long time proponent of Deep Ecology and Integral Ecology. She holds a certificate in Community Arts Practice and an undergraduate degree in Environmental Studies from York University. Leah is Ministry Director of the Sisters of St .Joseph of Toronto’s Ministry for Social Justice, Peace, and Creation Care. She has over 10 years of experience working for social justice with Christian non-profits. She holds an M.A. in Peace and Justice from the University of San Diego.

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