This took place at Rydal Hall in Cumbria. The venue was idyllic and the food of gourmet quality. It was led by Rob Pepper and Aimee Littler from West Holloway. We danced to the Aramaic Lord’s prayer and indulged in drawing, painting and clay modelling. A very different type of activity from our usual conferences but which proved to be very enjoyable as well as challenging. There was spiritual inspiration in all this as well.
The conference featured Aimie’s presentation of The Lord’s Prayer in conjunction with a selection of Rob’s art work.
Drawing, sculpture, song, dance and any other artistic disciplines are about inner dialogue, a conversation between our inner and outer worlds. Just as our spirituality is a conversation between our inner and outer worlds. We don’t always need to be told when something is spiritual, as for each of us this experience is personal and different from one to the next. Through this weekend we were offered some tools to enable us all to continue and explore our ever changing spiritual paths. This space was about taking time for yourself using your creativity. There was no pressure and it was not about making great pieces of artwork but enjoying the process.
The recent passing of Brenda Harrison was featured during worship when Susan Murphy placed tributes received from members, together with a copy of the funeral order of service. The tribute below was read, followed by a minutes silence and the singing of ‘For all the saints’.
Tribute by John Blowers
We will all have been stunned and saddened by the death of Brenda Harrison. We will have known of her brave fight against cancer for some time. This fight was finally lost on February 24th.
Brenda joined EF around 1987 and from day one was an enthusiastic member of the Fellowship as she was of so many groups wanting justice for many oppressed and marginalised people.
She was on EF committee for a good number of years and was at a committee meeting on January 3rd still full of concern for the future of the Fellowship, and even when not on committee was willing to give of her considerable talent and drive to any task she was invited to undertake. She was spokesperson to the press and spoke publicly on our behalf many times.
It is evidence of the affection and esteem in which she was held in that hr church in Frimley was filled with her friends and colleagues on March 12th. Among these were 19 current and 3 former members of this Fellowship. A very commendable number. Tributes were paid by groups for whom she had worked tirelessly including a former work colleague. EF was represented by Ian Handscomb who gave a very fitting and appropriate tribute to all that Brenda did for and gave to this Fellowship.
Mike and I were the people who, in the last days, communicated the changing situation with Brenda’s condition. We were asked to circulate this to the Fellowship and this we did by email to those who had email addresses.
By the time consideration could be given to postal communication to others her situation of ‘being in a terminal condition’ had developed to the fact that she had passed away. We then included details of the funeral arrangements in the letter.
We received a number of tributes in response, and these, together with the card written at this conference will now be brought to the altar and will be sent to Pam after conference.