The Festival of Prayer 2020

The Festival of Prayer 2020

Hosted by: BRF with the Diocese of Oxford
£30.00

Keynote speaker: Gemma Simmonds

Saturday 11 July 2020
10.00 am - 4.30 pm

Buy four places, get the fifth place free. To claim this offer, enter the following code at the checkout: FESTIVAL5

The Festival of Prayer, now in its tenth year, aims to enhance your spiritual life by offering different approaches to Christian prayer and spirituality in a day-long conference.

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Title The Festival of Prayer 2020
Hosted by BRF with the Diocese of Oxford
Description

Saturday 11 July 2020
10.00 am - 4.30 pm

Buy four places, get the fifth place free. To claim this offer, enter the following code at the checkout: FESTIVAL5

The Festival of Prayer, now in its tenth year, aims to enhance your spiritual life by offering different approaches to Christian prayer and spirituality in a day-long conference.

Take the opportunity to learn about different ways of praying and see whether they work for you – perhaps you are looking to renew an interest or try something new?

Following a keynote address by Gemma Simmonds, a Roman Catholic sister and a teacher of Ignatian spirituality, attendees will join up to three different workshops or have one-to-one sessions with a spiritual director and time and space for personal reflection. These activities will give attendees the opportunity to reflect upon the interconnectedness of prayer and life.

This year’s event will be held in the buildings of Ripon College and the Parish Church, all within walking distance of each other. The Parish Church and the Harriet Monsell Centre of Ripon College have amplification and a loop system for those with hearing difficulties.

The cost for the day is £30.00. Coffee and tea will be provided but we ask that you provide your own lunch. You will also be able to peruse some new and classic BRF titles at the book stall on site.

Information about venue accessibility is in the programme tab below. For information about speakers, workshops and the venue see below.

Details
  • Product code: FOPOX2020
  • Published: 17 February 2020
  • Format: Event

Saturday 11 July 2020
10.00 am - 4.30 pm

Buy four places, get the fifth place free. To claim this offer, enter the following code at the checkout: FESTIVAL5

The Festival of Prayer, now in its tenth year, aims to enhance your spiritual life by offering different approaches to Christian prayer and spirituality in a day-long conference.

Take the opportunity to learn about different ways of praying and see whether they work for you – perhaps you are looking to renew an interest or try something new?

Following a keynote address by Gemma Simmonds, a Roman Catholic sister and a teacher of Ignatian spirituality, attendees will join up to three different workshops or have one-to-one sessions with a spiritual director and time and space for personal reflection. These activities will give attendees the opportunity to reflect upon the interconnectedness of prayer and life.

This year’s event will be held in the buildings of Ripon College and the Parish Church, all within walking distance of each other. The Parish Church and the Harriet Monsell Centre of Ripon College have amplification and a loop system for those with hearing difficulties.

The cost for the day is £30.00. Coffee and tea will be provided but we ask that you provide your own lunch. You will also be able to peruse some new and classic BRF titles at the book stall on site.

Information about venue accessibility is in the programme tab below. For information about speakers, workshops and the venue see below.

Please note that spaces are limited for certain workshops and spiritual direction sessions.

* Venue accessible by a few steps

** Only accessible by stairs

HM Hearing Loop

Welcome and keynote address 10.00 am – 10.50 am

Who Do You Say I Am?: Prayer and Personality – Gemma Simmonds

Workshop one – 11.15 am – 12.15 pm

To see the world in a grain of sand – Colin Fletcher

Prayer in troubled times: praying with a breaking heart* – Mags Duggan

Prayer with percussion HM – Richard Dormandy

The inspiring lives of the Celtic Saints HM –  David Cole

Mystical prayer: the way of the heart – Emma Pennington

Contemplation, jazz, communion: learning from Thomas Merton in fragmenting times** – Gary Hall

Praying with colour* – Jan Palmer

Spiritual direction

Personal space 

Lunch 12.15 pm – 1.30 pm

Workshop two 1.30 pm – 2.30 pm

Finding God in all things: Ignatian spirituality for every day HM – Gemma Simmonds

Mystical prayer: the way of the heart – Emma Pennington

‘Who do you think you are?’: Sub-personalities and prayer HM – Joanna Gallant

Prayer from a psychological perspective* – Joanna Collicutt

The spirituality of being yourself – Guy Elsmore

Contemplation, jazz, communion: learning from Thomas Merton in fragmenting times – Gary Hall

Prayer in troubled times: praying with a breaking heart** – Mags Duggan

Spiritual direction

Personal space

Break

Workshop three 3.00 pm – 4.00 pm

Prayer from a psychological perspective* – Joanna Collicutt

‘Who do you think you are?’: Sub-personalities and prayer** – Joanna Gallant

Jesus: Man of Prayer HM – Ann Persson

Living in the rhythm of the Celtic Year – David Cole

The spirituality of being yourself – Guy Elsmore

Journaling – Jan Palmer

Prayer with percussion HM – Richard Dormandy

Spiritual direction

Personal space

Break

Reflection and blessing 4.15 pm – 4.30 pm

To see the world in a grain of sand – Colin Fletcher
Exploring in prayer wholeness in Christ in organisations and structures.

The world in which we live, and the large organisations or networks in which many of us work are hugely complex. In his working life Colin Fletcher has served in large organisations, in a church with a congregation of 400+, the many-faceted elements of an archbishop’s ministry and Dorchester Episcopal Aria with its 326 churches. How do we pray into and find the soul of these complex and amorphous bodies - meaningfully? This workshop will explore what Colin, other people and participants have found helpful in praying for a wider whole.

Prayer in troubled times: praying with a breaking heart – Mags Duggan
What breaks your heart? What has been breaking your heart these months, days? And what does that breaking sound and look like when you pray? In our harder times, prayer can sound like angry accusations, sobbing anguish, ragged questioning where we grab our faith by the scruff of the neck and drag it into the presence of God. We are not alone and we can learn so much from the example of men and women like David and Moses, Hannah, Job and Jesus and how they prayed through their troubled times. How do we follow in their footsteps? How do we pray honestly with our bruised and breaking and troubled hearts? These are some of the questions we will explore together in our session as we unwrap their prayers, the circumstances in which they prayed, and their understanding of the character of the God to whom they prayed.

Prayer with percussion – Richard Dormandy
Richard will bring a large array of professional percussion instruments and show how they can become a voice for our unspoken prayer – even (and especially perhaps) when they are not played as a standard percussionist would use them. There will then be an extended time for participants to explore the instruments, and to pray through them, followed by sharing and feedback.

The inspiring lives of the Celtic Saints – David Cole
In this workshop you will look at the lives of some of the Celtic saints and some themes which run through the life stories of others so that we can each be inspired to live more holy and God oriented lives ourselves. Learn about some of the people from our spiritual heritage who you may not have heard of before, and some you may know already.

Mystical prayer: the way of the heart – Emma Pennington
Drawing on the writings of the great mystics of the past, this workshop will focus on the type of prayer known as the way of the heart or mystical prayer, where experiencing and feeling the presence of God is the path to a deeper relationship with him, rather than knowing and thinking. There will be an opportunity to share our own prayer practices and spiritual experiences as well exploring how sensitive openness to God can lead to social action and loving service to the world.

Contemplation, jazz, communion: learning from Thomas Merton in fragmenting times – Gary Hall
As a Trappist monk, Merton was wholeheartedly given over to an intensive discipline of prayer, worship, work and religious reading; but in his writing he is reticent about telling readers how to pray – at least, in any direct or programmatic way. What he leaves us is a rich deposit of writing, speech and art which can entice us into his yearning for communion with God in Christ, and deeper connection with other persons. Through his counter-cultural witness in times of social crisis, his silent and communicative action which frustrated conservatives and radicals, Merton continues to invite us to attend to the details of our interwoven lives, our emotional and cultural landscapes, and the presence of Christ amongst us.

Praying with colour – Jan Palmer
If you are looking for a new way to connect with God that helps you process life’s events and your emotions creatively in God’s presence then this workshop may be for you.

This is a practical taster session where you will first explore the relationship between your emotions, colours and shapes. You will then move on to use the outputs of this exploration in the context of a led Examen, noticing the things that God may show you through this creative approach to prayer that you can take forward into our ongoing relationship with Him.

No artistic talent is required – just a willingness to explore and try something new.

Resources will be provided but if you want to bring your favourite (unlined) journal and coloured pens / pastels / pencils then feel free to do so.

Finding God in all things: Ignatian spirituality for every day – Gemma Simmonds
Many people think of Christian spirituality as something spooky, ‘above’ the banalities of ordinary life. Through his emphasis on desire and imagination, Ignatius guides us into a deeper appreciation of the capacity of all aspects of human living to reveal the divine within. In this understanding, prayer is discovering what we already have and are and learning to recognise and experience it.

‘Who do you think you are?’: Sub-personalities and prayer – Joanna Gallant
Our sub-personalities are a normal part of who we are and have often developed to help us adapt throughout our life. They can both enable and limit our ability to become more fully the person God has created us to be. Through teaching, practical engagement and discussion, this workshop will explore how we can prayerfully identify and integrate our sub-personalities, and how in doing so we can open ourselves up to the transforming work of God in our lives.

Prayer from a psychological perspective – Joanna Collicutt
This workshop will explore the human side of prayer: Why do we pray? What are we hoping to achieve? Does prayer involve distinctive ways of thinking, feeling, and acting? What happens in our brains when we pray? What are the psychological consequences of prayer? But it will also acknowledge that prayer is something we do with, and in God and place the psychology in a bigger theological framework.

The spirituality of being yourself – Guy Elsmore
In a world (and a church) where we are often encouraged to be ill at ease with who we are, this workshop will offer a space to think about the gift and the joy of simply being “you”.

Each of us is a unique image of God: the more we can be the people God’s made us to be, the more at ease we will be in our living and our praying.

The workshop will involve story, poetry, music, discussion and silence.

“Be yourself, everyone else is already taken.”

Jesus, Man of Prayer – Ann Persson
As water is to fish, so was prayer to Jesus. It was his environment. It permeated his whole being and was paramount in his relationship with his Father and with the people he moved amongst.  What he said, what he did, where he went, who he noticed, were all a direct result of prayer.

In this session, Ann will combine projected images with scripture and music, followed by a short time of personal reflection.

Living in the rhythm of the Celtic Year – David Cole
Much of our modern Western world has become completely detached from the turnings of the earth, from the cycles of the seasons and the astronomical as well as earth-based phenomena of time. Most of the ancient cultures of the world were intrinsically interwoven with these turnings, not just because they were more agrarian based cultures, but because they understood their interwoven relationship with the natural world, for the sustaining of life both physical and spiritual. The Celtic nations were no exception. Just like every culture and every Age, the ancient Celts had a year-long calendar. The Celtic year had seasonal changes and other focal points which where both physically and spiritually significant. The Celtic year has 8 points which are the 4 season changes, the 2 Solstices, and the 2 Equinoxes.

Learn more about the 8 points of the Celtic year and how they can inspire us in our walk with God.

Journaling – Jan Palmer
Journaling can be a key tool in our spiritual journey and is an approach that many people use in different ways in their relationship with God. If you have got out of the habit, never done it or just want some fresh approaches then this seminar may be for you. If you have great tips to share from your own experience then you will be very welcome too!

David, in writing the Psalms was perhaps the first example of how vibrant and real a written approach to connecting with God can be.

We will take a look at David as inspiration and then share some practical ideas together and do some journaling exercises that will hopefully set us off on the journaling journey afresh. Our aim will be to hear from God as we do so.

Please bring a pen and journal (lined or unlined) or blank notebook with you.

Spiritual direction
Talking one to one in a taster session with a trained spiritual director- not a lecture or workshop. Spiritual direction is for anyone, not just for ministers: confidential, non-judgemental, accepting.

Meeting with a director to reflect on your spiritual journey, prayer life or search for God can be a significant help when facing a spiritual issue or question: questions such as: ‘Where is God in my circumstances?’, ‘How can I pray?’, ‘What is God inviting me to?’, ‘How can I deepen my relationship with God?’

To help you make the most of this taster, you may bring along an issue you are comfortable discussing, or you may want to find out more generally what spiritual direction means.

In the 50 minutes you can get a sense of the qualities you might want in someone accompanying you on your spiritual journey, how you might benefit in having a director, and how to look for a suitable person with whom you can work.

Keynote: Gemma Simmonds
Gemma Simmonds is a Roman Catholic sister and a senior lecturer in pastoral theology based in Cambridge. She lectured in Christian Spirituality at Heythrop College, University of London 2005-2018 and was a chaplaincy volunteer in Holloway Prison for 26 years. She has been a missionary in Brazil and chaplain in the Universities of Cambridge and London. A regular broadcaster for the BBC, her most recent book is The Way of Ignatius, published by SPCK.

David Cole
David Cole is an international Spiritual Teacher and Retreat Leader; an author; the UK Deputy Guardian for The Community of Aidan and Hilda - a globally dispersed Celtic New Monastic Community; and founder of 'Waymark Ministries'. David studied a Masters' degree in 'Christian Spirituality' writing his thesis on Celtic Christianity and Discipleship.

Joanna Collicutt
Joanna Collicutt is a psychologist and Anglican priest. Joanna's background is in clinical psychology but, after studying theology, Joanna moved into the area of psychology of religion and now research and lecture in this subject at Ripon College Cuddesdon and Oxford University. Joanna also teaches Christian spirituality and has a particular interest in the relationship between psychology, the arts and the Bible.

Richard Dormandy
Richard Dormandy is the Vicar of Holy Trinity Tulse Hill. He professes that he is not very good at praying, but sometimes finds that he can express himself quite deeply through engaging with percussion instruments. In another innovative project, Richard is leading his church in Europe’s largest urban self-build community hall, made with straw bales. It won the Green Church Award in 2017, and by the Festival of Prayer it will be two-thirds complete.

Mags Duggan
Mags Duggan was a missionary in East Asia for over 20 years before returning to the UK and joining the faculty at Redcliffe College where she lectured in Spiritual Formation and Soul Care. A retreat leader and spiritual director she is passionate about helping others nurture their relationship with God, including far-flung missionaries (via the wonders of the intenet)! She is the author of ‘God among the Ruins: Trust and transformation in difficult times.’

Guy Elsmore
Guy Elsmore is Archdeacon of Buckingham, previously he was Area Dean of Toxteth in Liverpool and Vicar of St Bride’s Liverpool, a church which found a new lease of life as it explored a call to be “Creative, Progressive and Inclusive”. Before which he was Area Dean of Widnes and Vicar of the shared Roman Catholic and Anglican parish church in Hough Green.

Colin Fletcher
Bishop Colin Fletcher has been the Bishop of Dorchester with day to day responsibility, as far as the Church of England is concerned for most of Oxfordshire for almost 20 years. Prior to that he was Archbishop George Carey’s Chaplain for 7 years and travelled widely with him both in this Country and overseas and, earlier still, he was the Vicar of a large Church in Margate for 8 years. He has also been a BRF trustee for 19 years and has chaired the trustees since September 2001. He retires later this year to enjoy, amongst other things, getting to know his 8 grandchildren even better than he does already.

Joanna Gallant
Joanna Gallant is vicar of St Francis of Assisi Church, Terriers, and also ministers in a broader context of Christian spirituality as a teacher, supervisor, retreat leader and guide for the Ignatian Exercises. She has an MA in Christian Spirituality from Heythrop College and loves walking with her husband and their black labrador by the coast.

Gary Hall
Before joining the tutorial team at Queen’s in 2010, Gary Hall led an international contextual training programme for the Methodist Church. Previously Gary served as a Presbyter in Leicester and Leeds, after working as a schoolteacher, engineer and farm labourer, and living with the Taizé community. He has been co-editor of The Merton Journal since 2003, and has written and taught on Merton in the UK, US and Germany.

Jan Palmer
Jan is a spiritual director, retreat leader, coach, wife and mum of 3 adult children who also juggles a part time role in IT. One of her passions is to encourage people in their relationship with God and each other in creative ways. Along with her husband, Gary, she speaks at FamilyLife’s (Agape) ‘A Day Together’ events and has been part of the development of Toucan (an app for couples to invest in their relationships).

Emma Pennington
Emma Pennington is Canon Missioner of Canterbury Cathedral. Emma has a passion for prayer and spirituality and welcomes the opportunity to encourage others to deepen the contemplative life of prayer. She has given talks and led retreats and Quiet Days both in the UK and abroad, and also tutored and lectured extensively on Christian Spirituality, especially at Oxford University, where she completed her doctoral research on Julian of Norwich.

Ann Persson
In the past Ann has led many Quiet Days for BRF and more recently she has led retreats for Lee Abbey. She is author of The Circle of Love – praying with Rublev’s icon of the Trinity and also of Time for Reflection – both books published by BRF.

This year’s event will be held in the buildings of Ripon College and the Parish Church, all within walking distance of each other. The Parish Church and the Harriet Monsell Centre of Ripon College have amplification and a loop system for those with hearing difficulties.

Map