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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 | No Comments

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

Tongues of Blessing

Visiting preacher Steven Saxby discusses speech and how we can both curse and bless others with it

PlayPlay

POSTED 26.09.18 BY: Paul Woodbury | Comments Off on Tongues of Blessing

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

Moot Celebrates its New Monastic Life before the Archdeacon of London on Pentecost Sunday

The largest number of Mooters ever took part in the annual ‘Rhythm of Life’ Commitment Service today before David Meara the Archdeacon of London on Pentecost Sunday.  As Moot goes from strength to strength in St Mary Aldermary, (the new home for the community for where it has resided for under 3 years), it was deeply encouraging to experience so many new mooters and those more established committing to following the way of Jesus Christ as a monastic new monastic seasonal vow.

This year, prayer hand labyrinths were given out as gifts to enrich personal prayer which were specially handmade for the occasion.  In his homily, the Archdeacon of London talked of the vocation of Moot to live and think outside of the box in obedience to God, but in new and creative ways.

In the intercessions, a number of international companions and leaders of Sister Communities – both mendicant and new monastics prayed for the community.  Jonathan Clark, the Bishop of Croydon prayed for Moot to remain true to its vocation, Sister Joyce of the Anglican Franciscans prayed that Moot will continue to take risks with mission and grow into the religious life, Emma Loveridge of the Sinai in the City New Monastic Community prayed that Moot would sustain its prophetic role and witness whilst Jonathan Dowman of the B1 Birmingham based New Monastic Community prayed that Moot would meet the challenge this year of the material and financial resources it needed to achieve its mission and ministry activity, particularly of the Host Cafe Project.

This year Moot will say a goodbye to a number of its participants including Grace Cowley and Aaron Kennedy who are getting married in the summer and then moving to Cambridge as Aaron becomes an Ordinand studying to become a Church of England Priest at Westcott House in Cambridge.

As part of a Church of England pilot, the Moot Community is currently in a discernment process to become a New Monastic Acknowledged Religious Community.  This will mean that it will be setting up a new national umbrella organisation that will not only support Moot, but a number of other new monastic communities under the same society.  It is currently being proposed that this will be called the Society of the Holy Trinity reflecting an organisation that was set up under the Oxford Movement which recently failed.   It is hoped that the new constitution of the Acknowledged Religious Community will be completed by July 2013.

POSTED 19.05.13 BY: ianmobsby | Comments Off on Moot Celebrates its New Monastic Life before the Archdeacon of London on Pentecost Sunday

Home is where the heart is by Ian Mobsby

At the Moot Eucharist on Sunday 21st April 2013, Ian Mobsby explored the theme of Home is where the heart is drawing on Ephesians 1:1 to 14 and The Gospel of Luke 24:36-49. In these biblical texts Ian explores the theme of the resurrection as an event of grace, that opens up the call for our lives as Christians as an event.
Ian then explores how this idea of ‘event’ informs a New Monastic understanding of a Rhythm of Life as an orientation of the heart. In this Service the Moot Community began a period of reflection leading to a planned Recommitment Service on Pentecost Sunday.

To see a copy of the Rhythm of Life reflection document, please click here.

POSTED 22.04.13 BY: ianmobsby | Comments Off on Home is where the heart is by Ian Mobsby

The Moot Community to commit to its Rhythm of Life on Sunday 19th of May starting at 3.30pm

Time is flying past this year, and now that we are in the season of Easter it is time to plan for our forthcoming Rhythm of Life (ROL) Service.  This is the opportunity each year, that the Moot Community commit to following the ROL for the year to come.    This year we hope to invite some of our international companions to join with us to commit to elements of the aspirations, spiritual practices and postures.  This is open to anyone who sees Moot as the or one of their spiritual homes.  We want to include as many as possible.

The way this works has different levels depending on where you are on your spiritual journey.  If you see yourself as a spiritual explorer interested in Moot’s aspirations in how we seek to live but don’t consider yourself a Christian – then you can be included affirming the Aspirations.

If you consider yourself to be a follower of the way of Jesus Christ, then we would encourage you to affirm the spiritual practices and postures.  These seek to name what it means to live a rhythm of prayerful action in obedience to the inspiration of Jesus.

If you consider yourself to be a follower of the way of Jesus, but are geographically disconnected from participating in the community, then we have a simplified section for those who are international companions.

The ROL Service will be followed by a social celebration of the Moot Community at St Mary Aldermary.

For a download of a simple summary of the Aspirations, Spiritual Practices and Postures, please see below.

ROLSummary

POSTED 11.04.13 BY: ianmobsby | Comments Off on The Moot Community to commit to its Rhythm of Life on Sunday 19th of May starting at 3.30pm

Spirit, renewal and the New Monasticism by Bp Richard Chartres

On Pentecost Sunday 2012, Bp Richard Chartres, the Bishop of London, led the Moot recommitment service to the Community’s Rhythm of Life. In the homily, Bp Richard explores the themes of the renewal in mission and healing of the Holy Spirit. In particular he explores the life and vision of Dorothy Kerin who founded the Burrswood Community and its focus on wellbeing and healing.

This homily was re-recorded after the Rhythm of Life Service by an alternative voice from the written homily of Bp Richard, at the Guild Church of St Mary Aldermary, the Home of the Moot Community. Permission was sought and given for this recording.

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POSTED 23.06.12 BY: ianmobsby | Comments Off on Spirit, renewal and the New Monasticism by Bp Richard Chartres

Annual Rhythm of Life Service 2012 | Sun 27th May 4pm

This Sunday will be Moot’s second Rhythm of Life Service in the Guild Church of St Mary Aldermary, and the first before the Bishop of London in our new home.  This service is open to anyone to attend, so please do come if you are around Sunday 4pm.  The Service is followed by a drinks reception/party afterwards.  If you are a participant of Moot, or who have travelled with us, you are also invited to participate in this and affirm the aspirations and/or spiritual practices.  Attached below is an introduction to the ROL.

Having aspirations and spiritual practices is very much part of our ROL basis and an expression of our New Monastic expression of Church which expresses the heart of Moot.  This year we are making the important point that the aspirations are not just for Christians who are part of the community, but aspirations for those who are not followers of the way of Jesus but who are exploring this, and want to commit to a seasonal aspiration or intention to explore this further.     Aspirations then can be affirmed by those who are Christians or not.  Spiritual practices however are an attempt to express what it means to be a a follower of the way of Jesus in the practical cycles of how we live.  They seek to balance the sustaining of a spiritual life through action and activity as a healthy balance of doing and being.

The Spiritual postures are again an articulation and commitment to be open to God at the heart of what we seek to become as followers and listeners to God.

For further discussion, but some of us are feeling that we also need to start to explore a deeper centre to the community, which is about the practice not only of following Jesus but wanting to create a greater sense of being a relational community.  This is only a thought and discussion for some at the moment and will not be included in this year’s ROL Service, but will be something that some participants of the community will be raising for our discernment.

So Sunday is going to be a great day – hopefully sunny – and we have friends coming from Greece, Australia and Telford (Hehe!) So please do come along it will be good!

ROL-postures-sppractices-9

POSTED 26.05.12 BY: ianmobsby | Comments Off on Annual Rhythm of Life Service 2012 | Sun 27th May 4pm

Rhythm of Life Service and Reception

Our annual Rhythm of Life service is taking place in St Mary Aldermary on Sunday 27 May from 4pm. This is a vital moment in Moot’s calendar, as it is where the Community re-affirms its dedication to following a rhythm of life through presence, acceptance, creativity, balance, accountability and hospitality. All members of the Community are invited to attend and take part, and we would gladly welcome anyone who wishes to come and support us. For more detailed information on the Community’s Rhythm of Life, please click here and here.

The Community is also in need of people to actually help plan and prepare for this service, whether before hand as part of a working group or to help set up on the day. If you would like to help, please contact us here.