Spring and Lent are coming! Even though as I write this to you it is snowy and 21 degrees according to the thermometer on our deck! Still deep under the frozen ground, the roots of our trees and perennials are growing and the seeds we scattered in the fall are germinating. There is life deep down!
Life is always stirring deep in our souls as well, no matter the outer state of our lives. This Lenten season (which begins Ash Wednesday, March 6, with our annual 6:15 p.m. soup supper and Ash Wednesday service at 7:00 p.m.) we are “Going Deeper.” As a faith community, I invite you to join with me and with one another as we put the roots of our faith deeper within the soil of God’s love in all our worship, formation, outreach and fellowship activities.
To further your Lenten journey, please join your Plymouth family in a time of reflection, creativity and fellowship at our first Plymouth intergenerational art and spiritual retreat, Going Deeper: Putting Down Soul Roots, March 8-10. We will explore and follow the life of trees through art projects for ALL ages and ALL art experience levels, reflection on poetry and scripture, prayer, fun and fellowship. Friday evening, 3/8, from 6:30-8:30 and Saturday, 3/9, 9:30-11:45 and 1:00-3:00, led by our artist/theologian-in-residence, the Rev. Dr. Linda Privitera.
Do you know what trees and people have in common? The “giveaway” answer is that both function much better in community. The recent NY Times best-seller, The Hidden Life of Trees by Peter Wohlleben, tells us that isolated or solitary trees do not live as long as those in a forest. Sustenance comes from a network now being studied by researchers about how trees communicate, warn of danger, feed, sustain and nurture even the weaker members of the forest.
With this background knowledge from the science of creation, our retreat time with Linda will function on the assumption that making art is an intuitive and concrete way of knowing. Engaging in a variety of art experiences around the theme of trees, all designed for fun, we will also engage reflective processes to help us listen to the journey of the soul, deepening our understanding of how God’s Spirit is working within us individually and communally.
Our artistic and spiritual retreat journey this weekend will be grounded in Jesus’ time in the “wilderness,” which is the traditional gospel lesson for the beginning of Lent. Expanding on the traditional view of wilderness time as a time of trial, we will journey with Jesus in a soul-enriching time, thinking about what he might have gained from his time in nature. It is no surprise to us here in Colorado and particularly in our community, rich in environmental scientists, that God’s creation has so much to teach us about what really matters in this world.
Our artistic and spiritual work will culminate with an Lenten art installation of trees, roots, and connections created by YOU under Linda’s leadership and direction. The plan is that together, adults, youth and children, will create a network of roots connecting our individual art pieces of trees and roots, and linking it all to the base of the cross in the sanctuary which will “grow” a large system of roots joining everything together. Come and see what you can create with zip ties, twisty wires, braided heavy twine and raffia! How will hot glue guns, stencils highlighting the work of Gustav Klimt, rocks, and your own creativity shape a forest of spiritual connections that deepen the roots of our faith community? Come and find out!
Sign up now by clicking this link.........or registering at the “Going Deeper” Art Weekend table in Fellowship Hall, February 23 and March 3 before and after worship times.
College students, youth, and kids are free! (But please register so we know you’re coming.) Adults, $35.00 and Families with two adults, $60.00. Don’t let finances get in the way...assistance is available...just talk to me or send me an email.
Blessings on our journey together deeper into God’s love,
The Rev. Jane Anne Ferguson, Associate, Minister, is a writer, storyteller, and contributor to Feasting on the Word, a popular biblical commentary. She is also the writer of sermon-stories.com, a lectionary-based story-commentary series. Learn more about Jane Ann here.