Here are some links and items that have been recommended by Spidir members. Obviously some are specific to Lent but you may still find them useful and inspiring.

If you have any resource ideas, please send the material or a link to me, John Philpott-Howard, philpotthoward@aol.com

(1) FROM Julie Léger Dunstan, Director for Formation and Professional Development, London Centre for Spiritual Direction

This is a short blog written in response to the disturbing news of Jean Vanier and its implication for spiritual direction.
https://www.lcsd.org.uk/blog/spiritual-direction-in-the-shadow-of-jean-vanier

(2) FROM Peter’s House  – LENT IN ISOLATION

Peter’s House is a Catholic creative project studio based in London which aims to support the mission of the Catholic Church through project management and content development. 

The project has created resources for Lent ‘especially as this season of Lent now clearly coincides with circumstances never experienced by this generation. The world is gripped with fear and uncertainty surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic. While governments, institutions, and organisations react to this unprecedented and seemingly uncontrollable crisis, our populations are being forced into isolation, separated from friends and family.’
https://www.lentinisolation.com

(3) Church of England #LiveLent: Care for God’s Creation

#LiveLent: Care for God’s Creation is the Church of England’s Lent Campaign for 2020. With weekly themes shaped around the first Genesis account of creation, it explores the urgent need for humans to value and protect the abundance God has created. This year’s #LiveLent challenge offers 40 short reflections and suggested actions to help you, your family and your church live in greater harmony with God, neighbour and nature.

It has been inspired and informed by the Archbishop of Canterbury’s 2020 Lent Book, Saying Yes to Life by Ruth Valerio (SPCK).

You can sign up for emails & Alexa or Google Home broadcasts
https://www.churchofengland.org/our-faith/living-out-our-faith/lent-holy-week-and-easter/livelent-care-gods-creation

(4) Archdiocese of Southwark’s Stewardship Team

Over the weeks of Lent the Archdiocese of Southwark’s Stewardship Team, in collaboration with the diocesan Spirituality Commission, will send out Sunday reflections – you sign up for them at  http://eepurl.com/dcNmsv

(5) The World Community for Christian Meditation

There are large numbers of media resources at this website http://www.wccm.org/media-page/

(6) Jesuits in Britain – Pathways to God

https://www.pathwaystogod.org

Includes Lenten material – JOURNEY INTO FREEDOM: LENT RETREAT 2020

(7) The Dominican Friars – England & Scotland

https://www.english.op.org

Includes Spiritual Resources for Times of Isolation at
https://www.godzdogz.op.org/godzdogz/spiritual-resources-for-times-of-isolation

and a number of livestreams of services at
https://www.english.op.org/coronavirus-online-mass-and-spiritual-resources-from-the-dominicans

(8) Poem © Diana Pinchin (Catholic Spirituality Network)  

Prayer  

A time to be still and at peace, in silence you came to us.
As we seek to find you, we welcome you into our hearts.
We open our inner thoughts to you,as you know what is on our mind.
We seek your will for our lives,  as we sit is stillness with you.

Prayer is a two way conversation, words at times are not needed. 
Silence and stillness are all we need, both when alone and in a group. 
Prayer is powerful, and can change lives,
Sometimes in a big way, but often it is a gentle push. 

We need trust and confidence, to believe you have a  job for us, 
and we need to say yes, however hard the yes may be. 
Pray can also bring release to those, in need of a healing touch. 
We just prayer for that healing touch, whatever form the healing takes.

Prayer can also support communities, who seek to know the will of God, 
as churches reach out to those in need.

 ©  Diana  Pinchin  May 2019 

(9) Woodbrooke, the Quaker study centre in Birmingham

Runs a variety of courses and retreats and since Spring 2020 their online offering has developed hugely. They are open to everyone (though a few are probably only relevant to Quakers). https://www.woodbrooke.org.uk In normal times the centre is also a beautiful and quiet place to stay, for personal retreats or meetings, with a good library and an amazing garden. (Submitted by Linda Murgatroyd)

(10) Seeding the Spirit: the Appleseed Workbook, by Chris Cook and Brenda Heales.

A workbook for individuals or groups wishing to explore themes of prayer, meditation, the mystics and the arts. The authors offer diverse ways of responding to these themes through simple creative activities and provide detailed instructions on how to do so, based on their many years of working in their Appleseed ministry at Woodbrooke and travelling widely. Distinctive, inspirational, enabling and impeccably presented. 

This is available from the Quaker Bookshop https://bookshop.quaker.org.uk . If it’s not on their website you can still order it by email. (Submitted by Linda Murgatroyd)

(11) Praying for the Planet: monthly email from Jane Upchurch

If you would like to receive this email please contact Jane at janeupchurch@blueyonder.co.uk

Here is a sample from a recent email:

Thursday 17th September is the new moon, the day we particularly remember our beautiful planet in prayer, meditation, awareness or involvement, with love, hope and gratitude.

Noticing and absorbing the presence of a beautiful flower, a magnificent tree, a sunset, the deep peace in a forest, a spider’s web caught with rain drops, a butterfly, our garden, are all ways that any of us can enlarge our inside space by focusing on an outside place.  You could call them an altar, somewhere to stop and be aware that the world, and we, are bigger than we thought.  The world of spirit doesn’t just live in religious institutions, it inflames the world around us and hovers at the edge of perception, waiting for us to notice.

What altar can you find today?

Into the garden

What is it

that calls me into the garden

on a soft spring day?

What music

of leaf and space and sun

moves me,

finding harmonies of soul?

The air is charged

with the presence of spirit

making every garden

an altar

where the mundane and the sacred

meet.

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