Below is the original page written before the conference
Tributaries and trails of thanksgiving, vulnerability and radical choice.
A CEL day of celebration with
Director of the Quiet Garden Movement;
Leader of Contemplative Fire;
Adviser in spirituality, Sheffield Diocese.
- Explore with body, mind and spirit the relationship between God, nature and the human.
- Deepen your discipleship and prophetic practice in church, community and daily life.
Saturday 16 March 2013
Oxford Place Methodist Centre
Leeds LS1 3AX
10:30 to 17:00
(Doors open 10am for 11am start)
Cost: £15 (£10 for CEL members). Early bird price for all: £10 until end of January.
Students under 26: £5-00. Limited Travel Bursaries offered to Students under 26 years.
Print out Booking Form and send it off
or Book Online: (Student and Early bird discounts not available online – you have to print and fill in the printed booking form for that)
This year’s annual CEL conference will nourish the roots of our environmental action. We will deepen our relationship with what sustains us, in creation and in our care for it.
During the morning Philip Roderick will lead us in exploring with body, mind and spirit the profound relationship between God, nature and the human. He will draw from the Scriptures and from the deep insights of Eastern Orthodox theologians and practitioners, such as Isaac the Syrian quoted below.
Our lives members and friends of CEL are shaped both by our discipleship on the way of Christ, and by the fragility of our world. More and more people within and without the churches are facing up to the reality of eco-vulnerability. Ancient and contemporary Jewish and Christian teachers show that people tend to change not so much through fear or the imposition of guilt-trips, but rather through a process of sensitisation to wonder and wisdom, earthy enthusiasm and effective engagement.
This awakening involves discovering deeper connections with what lives around us. The inter-connectedness is not just a fact of life: it is for many a ‘felt sense’. This solidarity and empathy can be enhanced and extended. The best way to do this is by choosing to deepen our spiritual practice. As we build stronger foundations of prayer and love (which can be expressed in a whole variety of ways, as we shall explore at the conference) so our personal and community lives will be uplifted and transformed.
With Philip we shall learn to be attentive to the essential rhythms of cosmos and community, of environment and person. Our mother’s heartbeat provided a core foundation for our interaction with the world. The foundation is rhythm. The cycle of the seasons, the pulse of the body, the essence and energy of God, planet and people – all of this can be offered up in our discipleship and worship:praxis and praise that are plugged into the everyday and into the mystery of life in Christ.
In the afternoon the conference will feature a choice of interactive workshops, led by people who have been inspired to take action themselves and help others to do the same. Three of the groups will focus on the ‘tributaries’ of learning, experience and growth which nourish our Christian environmental witness:
- In prayer, contemplation and intercession
- In worship, liturgy and preaching
- In church life and buildings.
Three more groups will follow ‘trails of witness, challenge and action’, enabling people to share their experience and develop their action on current debates and campaigns on:
- Climate change
- Agriculture and food
- World development and the environment
You will be able to sign up on the day for any two of these.
Access: The whole of the Oxford Place Methodist Centre is accessible.
We look forward to seeing you for a nourishing and memorable day!
‘What is a charitable heart? It is a heart burning with charity for the whole of creation, for humans, for the birds, for the beasts, for the demons — for all creatures. He who has such a heart cannot see or call to mind a creature without his eyes becoming filled with tears by reason of the immense compassion that seizes his heart, a heart that is softened and can no longer bear to see or learn from others of any suffering, even the smallest pain, being inflicted upon a creature.
That is why such a person never ceases to pray for the animals, for the enemies of Truth, and for those who do him evil, that they may be preserved and purified. He will pray even for the reptiles, moved by the infinite pity that reigns in the hearts of those who are becoming united to God.’ St Isaac the Syrian