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Wednesday, June 4, 2008

Day at the abbey

I spent Friday night and Saturday at the abbey at Jamberoo. This was the abbey that featured in the recent tv show however, I have been visiting here since I was in high school. I am not catholic, but I am contemplative in my spiritual journey as a christian and have found it a blessing to visit and spend time with the nuns here.

This weekend was a Taize retreat day. I went up the night before as I like to visit the abbey and spend time in the grounds and in quiet, and love the early service at 4:30am. It's really special to wake before the world does and walk under the stars to the chapel which is lit only by candles and gather with others to pray for the day.

The retreat day was also great, joining in song and prayer and having sessions run by one of the nuns and the chaplain who is a carmelite priest. The theme for the day was silence, about making space to listen, to engage with the world. So often the noise of the world can drown us out, and we need to still ourselves. That may be simply turning off the TV, lighting a candle, or just engaging with those around you. I am inspired to practice silence more.

Actually one interesting thing was that I didn't feel as much of a difference going there as I normally do. It usually feels so different to be still and quiet. However I think not having a TV has allowed me to be a bit quieter and listen to those around me, listen to God, listen to myself...

The drive there is lovely, along the coast of south eastern Australia. I was going to post a photo but it didn't load up. Have a lovely night all.

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