Forest Church Outerweave

St. Brides Day

St. Bride, or St Brigit of Kildare, is a category 6 saint in the Scottish Episcopal Church Liturgy. For those unfamiliar with the number categories, this means that she is recognised as a person worth special recognition but that remembering this every year is a matter for local discretion.

So why is she significant for Quartz Forest Church?

The day she is remembered on is the 1st of February. This is associated with the first signs of spring and is one of the Scottish Quarter days which marked the change of seasons in the agricultural calendar. It is the promise of new life returning, if not altogether obvious unless you look out for it. We have been walking around the Crichton estate to get to know the place, and there are a few wee signs like snowdrops and bulbs breaking the soils surface.

The Gospel according to John starts with a retelling of the story of creation. In it the cosmic Christ, the Logos, the organising principle and light through which everything can be understood, enters the world as Jesus the human. This light should be recognisable to all Gods children, but some of those who you’d think should be aware of this miss it completely, and yet all those who recognise the good news can be born as children of God. Light is something which helps you to see things as they are, and the act of lighting a candle to look at something is very similar to having someone help you ‘see’ the truth.

Since there have been about 1500 years since the Abbess of the dual abbey of Kildare walked in the fields around it, the historical truth of her life is difficult to discover. The transformation of beliefs about the daughter of the Dagda, or good god, of the De Danan into the stories of the life of St Brigit took place long before the earliest record we have. There is more to truth than historical facts however, and the stories have survived because people recognise a sense of meaningfulness within them. They illuminate aspects of human being which they wish to be reminded of. It is worth taking some time to think about this and to learn to recognise the eternal truths, Logos, that can be found in them.

These truths can be markers of a shared space, where people of peace can gather. Rather than engaging in conflict about whether Christians stole Brigid to fool people into joining the Church, or complaining that neo-pagans are fabricating a pseudo history, why not recognise that this is a good time to clear out clutter to make room for new growth. Search the stories in the confidence that they are pregnant with the seeds planted by God ready to come to term within the womb of time. Have confidence that as you recognise truth the light which it sheds on your assumptions will transform you and set you free to be reborn. Reflect on the words, and find those who will be generous nursemaids to help with this process.

While you are doing this, perhaps you would like to weave a Brigits cross or four to place around your house to remind you. (6Mb download)

Simon will be participating in a gathering at Allanton Peace Sanctuary On the afternoon of Sunday the 30th This is the second of 8 events set equally throughout the year, based on the solar solstices and equinoxes.

Following the devastation of the Second World War, Mr Goi looked for a way to bring peace to all people, and the prayer and affirmation May Peace Prevail On Earth came to him in a moment of great inspiration. He realised that these words express the common wish of all humanity, transcending all boundaries of race, religion and politics. He envisioned that their gentle, yet powerful, effect would activate global peace consciousness.

Allanton website, describing the aim of the founder of their organisation

There is an open invitation to join online.

Imbolc Gathering at Allanton (online)

Sunday the 30th of January, 2022, from 2 – 3pm UK time.

A time to mark the strengthening of the light, as we in the Northern Hemisphere approach spring, in the Wheel of the Year, an auspicious time between the Solstice and Equinox.

Simon will show us how to make St Brigid’s Cross, representing the strong feminine energy of nurturing, hearth and home

This is participatory so if you would like to have a go, bring straw, or long grass, or just paper (A4 cut into strips of 2cm on the long side)

Kirsten will tell us a story, while we weave our crosses.

We will have a short meditation, followed by the Divine Spark Mudra, a prayer/meditation of the breath and movement.

The Zoom Room will be open from 10 minutes before.  Join us round our fire and hearth.  If possible, we will be outside, and will be delighted to see you,

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