Faith Factor | Discover ‘Silence for the Soul’ in serenity workshops | SierraSun.com
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Faith Factor | Discover ‘Silence for the Soul’ in serenity workshops

Special to the Sun

INCLINE VILLAGE, Calf. — This busy holiday season, we at St. Patrick’s Episcopal Church would like to offer you a gift that wasn’t a hot item on Black Friday or discounted on Cyber Monday. You may never write it on a wish list — or even perceive your longing for it. But pause and consider if this gift is calling to you.

We offer you a sanctuary of silence — a time to rest, align with nature’s quiet energy, and experience the serene light of Advent and Epiphany.

These two seasons in the Christian year fall before and after Christmas, but are usually lost in our cultural rush toward red and green, carols and bells, buying and giving. These are seasons of deep reflection and spiritual preparation for new life, in tune with nature’s turn from dark to light.

If we look up from our screens and away from our distractions, we see that the natural world is entering a profound transition: animals are resting more, plants are sending their energies deep into the earth, as we approach the Winter Solstice. Dec. 21, the shortest day of the year, both marks the onset of winter and promises the gradual return of the sun after prolonged darkness.

We are in a time of anticipation, observed and celebrated by all ancient religions.

In the Christian calendar, we have linked the rebirth of the sun with the birth of the Son of God, the One who enlightens the soul. We are invited to prepare for His coming in Advent, setting the intention to clear away all old habits, patterns, and thoughts that block the light, making space within for change and renewal.

And in Epiphany, the season that follows Christmas, we are called to let Christ’s new light flood into our hearts, activating our dreams and desires for spiritual growth. But how can we clear the space for this ancient and holy practice as the old year loudly ends and the new one revs up? This is our gift to you.

On two upcoming Saturdays, from 3 to 7 p.m.— Dec. 21 for Advent/Winter Solstice and Jan. 11 for Epiphany — we invite you to “Silence for the Soul” serenity workshops at St. Patrick’s, 341 Village Blvd., Incline Village, http://www.TahoeEpiscopal.org).

Over these four hours, you’ll be gently guided in and out of traditional Christian meditative practices, in silence and candlelight: centering prayer, walking meditation, Lectio Divina, and times for guided and personal meditation. Instruction will be brief and simple; a soup and bread dinner will conclude our time together.

You’re welcome to attend one or both workshops at no cost and to bring your own journal, texts, or meditation aids. Presence for the full four hours is requested, as coming and going will interrupt the collective energy we create. Soft, comfortable, warm clothing is suggested.

If you’d like to receive this experience — to unwrap the beauty of silence and the light of Christ’s peace — please RSVP in advance to 530-546-7824, revclarenovak@gmail.com or just show up. Your gift will be waiting for you.

Rev. Clare C. Novak is the Associate for Interfaith Ministry at St. Patrick’s Episcopal Church in Incline Village. —


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