Over Lent this year (2021) a motley but dedicated collection of freelancers, all of whom have a Christian Faith, decided to collaborate on a project we called Lent Voices. Each week we decided on a theme, loosely connected to a bible passage/story.
Below I have linked the contributions for week one (which also included a bonus item written for Ash Wednesday) – the theme was Leaving and we used the story of Jesus’ 40 days in the desert, immediately following his baptism, as our launch. That story can be found in Mark 1:9-15.
Ash Wednesday – by Mark Berry
A year ago Nathan and I spent a long weekend in Rome. We arrived in Italy blown by a storm and were met in the airport by the first signs of what was to come. We stood in a line waiting to be filmed by a thermal camera, COVID 19 had arrived in Europe and the strangest year of most of our lifetimes had begun. Plans and hopes for the year ahead were quickly cast aside as the “new normal’ set in, for many this meant loss of employment, loss of community and even the loss of loved ones… (read more)
Leaving for the wilderness – by Sally Nash
I never expected to leave for the wilderness, other people’s decisions, not mine. The wilderness is a stark place, beautiful in a way, but it can be a little scary too. The picture is from the Joshua Tree National Park and there were lots of signs about not going off the path and getting lost, with no phone signal you wondered when and if you would be found if you did get lost… (read more)
Leaving – by Mark Berry
We have stepped into the season of lent, planted a foot in another place.
A new time in the deepest desert begins.
Away from the pushing and shoving of life,
Away from the noise that clamours around us,
Away from the demands that compete for our attention… (read more)
Leaving and Wild Things – by Lucie Hutson
I wonder where your wild places are? Often biblically the wilderness is a place of wandering, the hard, barren places. For Hagar, within her wilderness escape the question was “where are you coming from and where are you going” (Genesis 16:7-11), the same may be imagined for the Israelites in their Exodus pilgrimage. The in-between spaces that were so important to the story… (read more)
Leaving – by Andy Campbell
The gospel stories say Jesus was ‘driven’ into the wilderness for those 40 days. There were wild animals there, but also angels.
I’m struck by the parallels of our collective existence, especially this past year. We’ve been forced out of our routines, comforts and assumptions and into a new territory that is confusing, frightening and holds significant dangers. Our wild beasts might come in the shape of a virus, loneliness or anxiety – and some of them have teeth and claws that will leave scars… (read more)
Theo-Drama: Leaving – by Hasna Khatun
Setting the scene for Theo-Drama. There’s drama, and then there’s theo-drama… What does theo-drama look like?
‘Leaving’ a lentern exploration – by James Fox-Robinson