I love it when a plan comes together, but it’s also good when one doesn’t, but rather something else happens in its place. This has happened a number of times on this leg, and was the case recently when I’d hoped to pay a visit to a church in Jackson, MS, but which visit didn’t seem destined to work out.
My wonderful host Carolyn and I had been connected just a few days before, and the opening that appeared was for us to lay the labyrinth in the bowl (a beautiful green lawn) at the splendid campus of Millsaps College, right in the heart of the city. Students stopped by, some played a ball game near by (which reminded me of the passing of a ball by priedts at Chartres, that used to happen around the labyrinth there), each of the fine chaplaincy team at the College who had welcomed us also made time in their busy schedules to pass by.
It transpired that Carolyn and I shared several common interests (not just the labyrinth), and when walkers weren’t needing guiding or holding, we sat in the sun, chatting away for hours. I felt like an old friend, and was struck by Carolyn ‘s hard work to make my visit possible. Sadly though, of course, it was all too soon time to pack away the big green canvas, share a hug, and go our separate ways.
A visit to a very welcoming church in Jackson did happen the next day, when (again at short notice), pastor Kyle invited me to join the morning prayer group at St Philip’s Episcopal Church, and then to make the labyrinth available for folks to walk, as a fair few did.
This was a place of warm welcome and keen enthusiasm to bring a labyrinth to the grounds of the church, where anyone can come to walk at any time. Let us pray and hope that that soon comes to fruition.