Laudato Si’ meeting 9th August Report

Cheltenham Laudato Si' Circle meets ‘face to face’ on Tuesday 9th August

Thanks to Jerry and Sue for hosting our first (for a long while) ‘in person’ meeting yesterday, and to Dr Susan Porter for sparing time to be with us from Worcestershire. We began our time together with the 2022 Season of Creation prayer – see attached – and ended with the Laudato Si’ Prayer for the Earth.

Susan Porter told us how worthwhile she had found the Laudato Si’ Animators training, and about the challenge she set for herself in order to obtain her final Animators certificate – to convene an ecumenical meeting locally, to which she managed to get about 50 to come. It has led onto a Laudato Si’ group meeting regularly in Redditch, and such activities as litter-picking and a public showing of the (freely-available) Global Healing film.

Susan made the point that, though these steps may seem small when there’s a mountain to climb, it was necessary to continue seeking ‘progress not perfection’. She was finding strength through reading Llewellyn Vaughan-Lee’s book ‘Spiritual Ecology’, and also by learning about the ideas and influences of Thomas Berry.

Susan attends the 9 a.m. daily prayer meetings of Christian Climate Action online (you can register here); and Roger said he in turn had been impressed by the energy and passion of so many young people he was encountering online and elsewhere in the non-violent direct action movement. N.B. The Action Network is organising a peaceful demonstration tomorrow, Thursday 11th when the two candidates for the Tory leadership come to Cheltenham for an election hustings. (They are largely ignoring the climate and ecological emergency, it appears!)

Berry and Sheila spoke also about the need to involve younger people in concern for creation, and Sheila is intending to pull together a session of readings and music under the heading ‘Dare to Hope’, ideally to be held in a church in the Autumn.

Before then, we have the actual Season of Creation, 1st September-4th October, and at the end of the meeting an idea emerged to celebrate with a bring and share evening, hopefully in the open air. We would contribute simple food strictly on a L.O.A.F. basis – see here – and each person too would be asked to contribute a short reading or poem on the theme of creation. This will be on Wednesday 7th September beginning at 6 p.m. Save the date!

In addition there is already ‘in the diary’ at 9.30 on Sunday 11th September a Creation Mass at St Gregory’s. Does anyone know of other Season of Creation plans on foot locally?

Two final points:

·        To remind you once more, a new Laudato Si’ Animators course starts on 24th of August, 2pm BST. Click the "Register" button on this link.

·        In case you’d like to join in, there’s a Laudato Si' Retreat for Animators in Europe
on 26th August, an online event consisting of two sessions – 7-8am and 7-9pm. Email to join. It will be a contemplative space where we can experience the power of joint prayer.


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