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Holy Week at Moot

If you have been joining or would like to join us for the remainder of Lent here’s a list of services we’re holding up until Easter Day.

You can find more details by clicking on the links in the list below

Wednesday 17th April | 8am
Morning Sung Taize

Thursday 18th April | 6.30pm
Maundy Thursday Agape & Footwashing followed by Silent Vigil

Friday 19th April | Noon
Commemoration of the Cross (at St Vedast-Alias-Foster Church)

Sunday 21st April | 6pm
Easter Sunday Eucharist

POSTED 09.04.19 BY: Paul Woodbury | No Comments

Jesus in the Wilderness – Some Reflections from Henri Nouwen

On Sunday evening I used the writings of Henri Nouwen to reflect on the lectionary reading for the First Sunday in Lent. These are explored mainly in the book “In the Name of Jesus” and I relied heavily on the quotations found on this blog.

Turning stones into bread – the temptation to be relevant

“Jesus’ first temptation was to be relevant: to turn stones into bread. Oh, how I wished I could do that!  Are we not called to do something that makes people realize that we do make a difference in their lives? Aren’t we called to heal the sick, feed the hungry, and alleviate the suffering of the poor? Jesus was faced with the same questions, but when he was asked to prove his power as the Son of God by the relevant behavior of turning stones into bread, he clung to his mission to proclaim the word and said, “Human beings live not by bread alone, but by every word that comes from the mouth of God.”

What ways are you or have you been tempted to be relevant? To rely on your abilities to work wonders and fix things, rather than to rely on God as the source of your strength and security.

Addressing the temptation – Contemplation

“To live a life that is not dominated by the desire to be relevant but is instead safely anchored in the knowledge of God’s unconditional and unlimited love,” Nouwen says, “we have to become mystics. A mystic is a person whose identity is deeply rooted in God’s love.”

Spend some time now rooted in that love. Breathe in that love as you breathe out your need to fix the world’s problems.

Worship me – The temptation to be powerful

“What makes the temptation of power so seemingly irresistible? Maybe it is that power offers an easy substitute for the hard task of love. It seems easier to be God than to love God, easier to control people than to love people, easier to own life than to love life.

One of the greatest ironies of the history of Christianity is that its leaders constantly gave in to the temptation to power–political power, military power, economic power, or moral and spiritual power–even though they continued to speak in the name of Jesus, who did not cling to his divine power but emptied himself and became as we are.”

How are you tempted to be powerful? To worship the powerful voices, rather than cling to the Christ-like, vulnerable examples of self-emptying love.

Addressing the temptation – Theological reflection

“Theological reflection is reflecting on the painful and joyful realities of every day with the mind of Jesus and thereby raising human consciousness to the knowledge of God’s gentle guidance. This is a hard discipline since God’s presence is often a hidden presence, a presence that needs to be discovered. The loud, boisterous noises of the world make us deaf to the soft, gentle, and loving voice of God.“

Spend some moments now trying to listen to that gentle voice. What is it telling you?

Throw yourself off the temple – the temptation to be spectacular

“The final temptation to which Jesus was exposed was precisely the temptation to do something spectacular, something that could win him great applause. “Throw yourself from the parapet of the temple and let the angels catch you and carry you in their arms.” But Jesus refused to be a stunt man. He did not come to prove himself. He did not come to walk on hot coals, swallow fire, or put his hand in the lion’s mouth to demonstrate that he had something worthwhile to say. “Don’t put the Lord your God to the test,” he said.

What ways are you tempted to be spectacular? To be applauded or rewarded for your efforts?

Addressing the temptation – Confession

“Confession and forgiveness are exactly the disciplines by which true incarnation lives. Through confession, the dark powers are taken out of their carnal isolation, brought into the light and made visible to the community. Through forgiveness they are disarmed and dispelled and a new integration between body and spirit is made possible.”

What things do you feel you need to confess today? How can this Lenten season be a time of honesty and humility about your own frailties and shortcomings?

POSTED 12.03.19 BY: emjric | Comments Off on Jesus in the Wilderness – Some Reflections from Henri Nouwen

“Who is my neighbour?” Exhibition & Launch Night Feb 28 6-8pm

The Moot Community would like to invite you to our Lent exhibition: “Refugee Stories – Who is my neighbour?”, especially our opening night event on Thursday 28th February.

‘Refugee Stories’ is a unique mixed media body of work created by Gillian Allard (winner of Sky Arts, Master of Photography 2 – 2017) in collaboration with her local refugee community in Suffolk. Accompanying the six pieces will be meditations written by the Moot Community reflecting on the art and the theme of Lent.

Please come and join us on the exhibition’s opening night Thursday 28th February 2019, 6-8pm, St Mary Aldermary Church, London, and meet Gillian and some of her collaborators on the work. Bar proceeds will be donated to Suffolk Refugee Support.

The exhibition will run from 28th February until 11th May – hours are opening times for the Host Cafe (the church is occasionally open on weekends, including for weekly Sunday evening services).

POSTED 14.02.19 BY: Paul Woodbury | Comments Off on “Who is my neighbour?” Exhibition & Launch Night Feb 28 6-8pm

Moot Weekend Away Reflections

Moot Community Weekend Away

Friday 2 November to Sunday 4 November at the Privett Centre, Hampshire

Through the evening of Friday 2 November, Mooters began to arrive at the Privett Centre, usually via Petersfield Station. The Centre is an old school so we had plenty of room in fairly basic surroundings and lovely Hampshire countryside. We all shared cooking, cleaning, washing up etc. The overall theme of the weekend could be summed up as, “What is growth in Moot?”
After dinner on Friday night, a moveable feast as people arrived, we said night prayer together, with a reflective examen, and then enjoyed board games and a start of the weekend drink.

Saturday morning started with a meditation and then, after breakfast, an exercise reflecting on where Moot is and where we hope Moot may be in the future. To what extent does Moot affirm personally what we are and to what extend does it personally transform us into what we can be? Also, as a community, is Moot primarily a safe space or primarily an open welcome? People stood in various parts of the room, in different quarters, to say what they think Moot is and then what Moot could be. He is where people stood: green cross to show current position; red cross to show what could be.

The largest segment for Moot’s current position is as a safe space affirming what we are. Potentially, though, we could become more transforming and, in some people’s minds, more welcoming. Even for those who wanted a more open welcome, there was a desire to maintain the priority of Moot being a safe space.

We then looked at growth within Moot. Some reflections were offered:

  • Moot and Host are not as close as the original mission strategy assumed. This is because community members cannot run Host as originally hoped – the community members do not have the time and Host has to be run according to professional standards. We can do things together but most of the community are not around during the working day, when Host is at its busiest, or during weekday early evenings when Host and Moot could offer joint activities.
  • Mini-Moots are essential to build up trust and as a safe space. Primary pastoral care can happen in the Mini-Moot. Perhaps they can run a WhatsApp group between meetings? Active listening is essential.
  • How do we introduce people to our Rhythm of Life?
  • Should we offer other interest groups e.g. “Crafternoon”, board games, Bible study?
  • Could we offer WhatsApp groups for different spiritual practices?
  • Serum was discussed – could we sign post people to this as there are Serum groups beyond the Moot group? To what extend is our group spiritual but not religious?
  • Could community forums become a place of exploration and discussion – especially as people are already coming to St. Mary Aldermary for Moot services which follow the Forum?
  • Can we offer anything for families? This should be kept under review as families grow.

After lunch on Saturday we had an autumnal walk around the Hampshire countryside.

The walk was followed by a Lectio Divina exercise, dinner and more board games and drinking.

 

Sunday started with Taize, breakfast and an exploration of what Moot’s priorities should be. The following four areas were highlighted:

  • The need to have an introduction to our Rhythm of Life. This would include some information/greetings cards that can be available during the week and on Sundays which we could share in the same way that we now provide an introduction to the church building. Also, on Sundays we all need to look out for and welcome new people and announcements at services should include non-Sunday activities.
  • Having a quarterly social as a Pre-Moot way into the community and encouraging people to be involved even if they are only to be with us for a limited period of time. [Since the weekend, the GCC has discussed having more socials in general rather than primarily for new people.]
  • Encouraging groups to let us know if they are visiting on a Sunday so that they do not overpower our safe space. This is especially true of the Agape. Also, having Pews not Pub after the Eucharist to encourage people, especially new people, to stay. On 2nd, 4th and 5th Sundays we would still head to the pub.
  • Using the Community Forum as a place of exploration and discussion, and maybe increasing how often it is held. This could include a book group.

 

Sunday morning concluded with the Eucharist and lunch. We then cleaned up and headed back to London. A great weekend.

 

Thank you to all who came and made it such an enjoyable and productive time.

 

Paul

 

 

POSTED 10.12.18 BY: Paul Woodbury | Comments Off on Moot Weekend Away Reflections

Rhythm of Life Commitment Service

At Moot over the least few years we’ve taken a step back to re-think who we are as a community, and as part of that process we’ve written a new rhythm of life for us to follow together. We’ve tried to keep it simple: we commit as the Moot Community…

  • to be a welcome community
  • to be a contemplative community
  • to explore our relationship
    –  with God
    –  with the world around us
    –  with one another

What that means for each of us will be slightly different, and each of us will make specific commitments for ourselves for a year to follow the Moot Rhythm of Life in a way that makes sense for where each of us is in our spiritual life, work life, family life, and so on.

After a few years without committing annually to a rhythm we’re looking forward to resuming this practice. We’re holding our our Rhythm of Life commitment service on Sunday October 7th, gathering at 6pm for tea/coffee ahead of the service at 6.30pm. We’d love you to join us for this important marker in our year and hope you’ll stick around for refreshments afterwards.

 

 

POSTED 27.09.18 BY: Paul Woodbury | Comments Off on Rhythm of Life Commitment Service

Holy Week at Moot

If you have been joining or would like to join us for the remainder of Lent here’s a list of services we’re holding up until Easter Day.

You can find more details by clicking on the links in the list below.

Thursday 22nd March | 6.30pm
Lent Course #4 – our final week, focusing on Centering Prayer

Wednesday 28th March | 8am
Morning Sung Taize

Thursday 29th March | 6.30pm
Maundy Thursday Agape & Footwashing followed by Silent Vigil

Friday 30th March | 8am
Morning Sung Taize

Friday 30th March | Noon
Commemoration of the Cross (at St Vedast-Alias-Foster Church)

Sunday 1st April | 6pm
Easter Sunday Eucharist

 

POSTED 21.03.18 BY: Paul Woodbury | Comments Off on Holy Week at Moot

Join us in the desert at Moot this Lent

For our Lent course at Moot this year we will explore prayer, stillness and the wisdom of the desert. We’ll meet Thursday evenings at 6pm (for tea/coffee) for a start-time of 6.30pm, following a pattern of: Talk – Discussion – Practice, focusing on a different particular prayer practice each week. We hope you will join us this season!

We will meet 4 Thursdays:

February 22nd
The Examen – praying with our emotions.

March 1st
The Lectio Divina – praying with the scriptures.

March 15th
Ignatian Meditation – praying with the imagination.

March 22nd
Centering Prayer – finding stillness in our daily lives

POSTED 11.02.18 BY: Paul Woodbury | Comments Off on Join us in the desert at Moot this Lent

New Year’s Moot Update

 

Happy New Year from all of us at Moot!

Wishing you all a bright January 1st morning, a restful end to holidays, and a peaceful start to the year ahead.

 

 

As we look to the year ahead and consider our road ahead and the changes we’re looking for, we wanted to update you on our direction as a community together. We’ve spent the last couple of years catching our breath from a years-long journey, particularly making a home at St Mary Aldermary, watching the Host Cafe come alive, and welcome Paul Kennedy our new priest.

This past November the community took a weekend to go away and take stock of who we are, what we are, and where we want to go together. I’d like to share a report from that weekend from Paul our priest (below).

Once again wishing you God’s peace, hope, and energy as we enter 2018 together – from all of us at Moot.

“On the weekend of the 3-5 November 20 people from the Moot Community travelled to the Youth Hostel at Littlehampton for fellowship, relaxation and an exploration of Moot’s calling. Littlehampton was a wonderful site: with the long beach; the tidal Arun river; and the huge open skies which we Londoners really appreciated.

Together we ate, we prayed, we talked, we drank, we walked, we played board games, and we explored God’s calling. We decide to redraw a simple Rhythm of Life to which Moot members can choose to commit; we reaffirmed our practices of contemplative and inherited prayer; we reflected upon how a distinctive community maintains an open welcome; we reaffirmed our New Monastic roots but accepted that we may be evolving in a less structured and more contemplative way; we planned a walk in the Chilterns; and we started plans for our next annual weekend away. The company was wonderful, the food was great, the Youth Hostel was cosy, the weekend felt blessed and I’m already looking forward to next year’s time away.

A draft of the Rhythm of Life should be ready for Lent, following a series of Community Forums, with a service at the end of September at which we hope Archdeacon Rosemary will preside.”

POSTED 01.01.18 BY: Paul Woodbury | Comments Off on New Year’s Moot Update

Advent & Christmas at Moot

Please find below details of events this Advent at Moot:

Our final regular Sunday service will be a Christmas Eucharist on Sunday 17th December, although we will also meet for a short contemplative evening prayer service on New Year’s Eve at 6pm (for 6.30pm).

Ahead of that we will enjoy our annual Carol Service on Friday 15th December at 6.30pm, to be followed by mulled wine, mince pies, and our Moot Christmas Party. All welcome to both of these – please join us to celebrate!

Additionally, join some of us at Moot on Christmas Eve for a carols service and communion with the congregation of St Vedast-alias-Foster nearby, followed by drinks in the rectory.

Friday 15th December 6.30pm | Carol Service followed by mince pies and mulled wine
Friday 15th December 8.00pm | Moot Christmas Party following the carol service
Sunday 17th December 6.00pm | Christmas Eucharist
Sunday 24th December 11.00am | Carols and Communion at St Vedast-alias-Foster
Sunday 31st December 6.00pm | Contemplative Evening Prayer for New Year’s Eve

POSTED 05.12.17 BY: Paul Woodbury | Comments Off on Advent & Christmas at Moot

Harry & Chris Show comes to Moot!

Fresh from their Edinburgh Fringe residency, Harry and Chris bring their outstanding show of slam poetry and music to St Mary Aldermary in support of the Al Alhi hospital in Gaza.

29th September, 7.30 pm. Bar and Dj’s till 11. Please do support what will be an excellent event in aid of a very good cause!

Tickets £12/£6

POSTED 10.09.17 BY: tim d | Comments Off on Harry & Chris Show comes to Moot!