Newsletter September / October 2018

“In order to understand the world, one has to turn away from it on occasion." ― Albert Camus, The Myth of Sisyphus and Other Essays

I’m looking forward to seeing some of you on our congregational retreat at the Ammerdown Centre on 7-9 September. But why do any of us bother to ‘retreat’? Why hide away when there’s always too many tasks that need to be done? Well, to retreat into the wilderness is a spiritual practice that goes back thousands of years and September seems like a good time to take a breather and step back. For some of us September is a time that we return to our routine, we may be starting a new challenge or we may be planning to do some clearing out ready for some changes. It is a season when change can be all around us with cooler, wetter weather folding in and darker evenings creeping up on us. It is a time when I can feel a few nerves in my stomach possibly because I associate September with a new term, maybe a new course in a new school with lots of unknowns and strange rules and new names to learn. It is also a season of excitement and growth.

Whatever September brings you I hope you take some time to retreat, to take stock and find some fresh perspective. You don’t need a wilderness to travel to – just a corner of a garden, a library or a café will do. If you are unable to join us at Ammerdown then are you able to find a quiet space to do some reflecting and find renewal?

I’ll leave you with these words:

“I have learned that I must push the pause button occasionally and retreat into that private place in my soul where it is only me and God!” ― Peggy Toney Horton, Stop the World and Get Off

Rev John Harley