ten years ago i heard john drane speak at a conference ACE 99 reflecting on the decade of evangelism in the church of england. as part of that he talked about spiritual seekers and how a mission perspective might give us a very different approach to how we related to the new age and those seekers. the most shocking thing at the time was that he produced a set of tarot cards and showed some (on overhead projector slide back then) and showed how the imagery was very much informed by the scriptures (he has since written a book on it). i think in a lot of ways that was a catalyst for people taking the challenge seriously of being on the inside of the spirtual seeking communities and tourists in the wider culture journeying with and sharing stories rather than somehow seeing an us and them world.
i got involved in running a stand with others at the london mind body spirit festival - and we'll be back again in a month. if you follow the blog, you'll know as i've written about that before. well this last weekend was the first ever uk gathering of christians who have got involved in this area. there were about 70 people there who had brought stands and resources for what they were up to. it was encouraging to see how much it has grown. from being an area of practice one or two pioneers got involved in, it has become a fledgling movement. following the weekend i think a more intentional network will grow in which people can share stories, learning, ideas, resources and so on. the gathering was pulled together through the sheffield centre with steve hollinghurst who has been a key person in this area, and journey into wholeness. so it's encouraging! if you're involved but weren't there buzz me an e-mail and i'll get you invited into the network when it emerges. it was also wonderful to experience philip roderick playing the hang again
john and olive drane were there and were inspiring as ever. it was also a real privilege to meet ole skjerbaek madsen who has been doing this stuff in denmark for decades with a group in the master's light. i don't speak danish so don't understand the site but he shared his story and led a communion liturgy that they use. i found an interview through google with him in english. and here's a quote from the talk he gave...
thanks steve, howard and laurence for your work in pulling it together