Once we get involved with Jesus, our understanding of time changes. We begin to see that the hours and weeks and seasons that we so carefully measure define a path that spirals and returns through eternity. The Christian tradition gives us treasures and tools to enter more deeply into the mysteries and possibilities of time. Seasons, stories, images, music, sacraments, prayer: these serve as doorways in our passage through time, inviting us to meet the God who dwells within each minute.
Join us as we enter and explore the sanctuary of time: that place where we learn once again that though we may feel overwhelmed by our clocks and our calendars, time comes as a gift from God, who fully entered into time but is not bound by it; a God who inhabits our ordinary days and also infuses every moment with the eternal. In this week we’ll give particular attention to the rhythm of the Christian year and the opportunities it offers to enter into sacred time as we journey through the story of Christ.
You will leave this week with ideas to translate into your local places of worship, inspiration for extending your liturgical life beyond the sanctuary, and sustenance for your creative souls.
Jan Richardson will be our keynote speaker and facilitator for the week.
A word about our format: this week is different than other summer weeks at the Guild. All participants in Liturgical Arts week journey together as they explore themes and ideas presented by Jan, but each morning will separate and work in their respective workshop/class of choice). When registering, please specify in the comments section which single class from the following three options you would like to participate in:
I. ADVENT PORTFOLIO: TO ILLUMINATE THE SEASON
Jan Richardson & Garrison Doles
Each year, the Advent season spirals us back around the sacred texts, stories, and images that help us know who we are and where we are from as the people of Christ. Advent offers a path that may be deeply familiar to us, yet it also invites us to enter it anew, to dig deeper, to see the story of the Incarnation with eyes that are open to the surprises that hide among the habitual. In this class, we will dive into this year’s lectionary readings for Advent and Christmas, exploring them from the inside out in order to find the treasures in the familiar texts, to unearth the threads that link the texts, and to discover the connections between the Christmas story and the sacred text of our own lives.
This class is designed especially for preachers, worship leaders, and liturgical artists, but anyone who wants to engage deeply with Advent and Christmas is welcome. We will use an enticing array of tools to explore the stories and images of this season, including collage, painting, storytelling, music, writing, and lectio divina (sacred reading). Our emphasis in this class will not be on producing finished pieces (though this will happen) but rather on returning home with a treasture trove of raw materials -- a portfolio-in-progress filled with ideas, images, words, stories, and insights that will inspire and ground you as you enter into Advent as a preacher, worship leader, artist, small group facilitator, or personal seeker. This class is a space for engaging the texts at the level of the soul and imagination: for doing the deep internal work that will help the Word become flesh in you, and prepare you to illuminate the season for those whom you serve.
II. LOOKING BACK, LOOKING FORWARD: A FRESH APPROACH TO CREATIVE PRAYER IN A CHANGING CULTURE
This practical course involves contemplative and active engagement in prayer with mixed media art forms. Multi-sensory stimulus for the sessions is provided by art, music, writers (such as Hildegard of Bingen and others), and the surrounding beauty of creation. The course offers a unique artistic response to tradtional ways of praying through all aspects of the Liturgical Year. You will learn how to respond to, interpret and adapt theological themes in each season leading to the creation of meaningful prayer forms for whole congregations, small groups, and personal devotional situations. Participants on this course will build up a rich art portfolio of transferable ideas created by the group will and learn how to communicate this fresh approach to seasonal prayer.
III. SILK PAINTING IN THE SEASON OF CREATION (This class is currently full)
“God is present, even in the tiniest leaf,” says Martin Luther. During this week we will delve into Norm Habel’s “Season of Creation” examining his liturgies of Forest, Land, River, Wilderness and Cosmos. Go to http://seasonofcreation.com/ for more info on this. We’ll also examine Martin Luther’s theology of God in our very midst: in, with, under, around and through all things. These ideas, along with our own experience of the land around us and the nature writings of poets and authors, will be used as portals into our sacred environment. We’ll return to the studio inspired for painting God’s sacred creation.
We’ll use silk painting as our medium. Easy to learn, we’ll start with the basics. You can keep it as simple as you please, or get pretty tricky if you feel like it. You will come out with projects both colorful and expressive. We will learn on silk scarf blanks, and larger painting-sized projects can be done as well. Make a Creation Season silk stole for your favorite pastor!
Silk is a wonderful medium for church use: vibrantly colorful pieces can be made to fill the large spaces of our churches that are surprisingly economical and can easily be stored for future use. We will discuss ways of using silk painting successfully with groups at your church, to strengthen community and to bring art into your worship space.