In late July, two groups gathered by zoom to explore inter-generational outdoor worship. We noted how fabulous the outdoors is for inter-generational worship, with children often being better at adults at slowing down, noticing and appreciating the wonders of creation and considering everything to be awesome and wonderful. As adults, we tend to rush from A to B and can learn from our children’s slower approach. As adults, we know the stories of our faith and how God is creator of all of life. As we learn from our children, so we also share with them a framework of understanding and of relationship with God, in which to hold their joy and delight.
We spent time particularly exploring ‘Forest Church‘ which is a way of approaching worship and prayer that is centred on nature, not doing outdoors what could be done indoors, but rather allowing our appreciation of nature to lift our hearts to God. Prayers and readings provide a framework for exploration of God’s creation, using resources such as nature spotter sheets and nature based crafts or going for a short walk to see what can be found.
This is not a new conversation but covid-19 has brought outdoors worship to the fore, with the outdoors a safer way to gather during current conditions. With this in mind, we have decided on a series of dates exploring outdoors worship over the next year. The first date has been set for 24th September, repeated at 1pm and 7pm. Future dates will be either termly or quarterly, thinking ahead to the coming season, both in terms of the Church Year and the seasons in nature.
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