Shhh! It’s National Quiet Day
“Take a moment for yourself and enjoy a little sanctuary in silence.” Sounds lovely, but in a life that is, for many, noisy, busy and often stressful, taking a moment to enjoy a little sanctuary sounds at best optimistic and at worst patronising. But his Thursday, September 14th, is National Quiet Day, and we should perhaps look to what Jesus did.
“Very early in the morning, while it was still dark, Jesus got up, left the house and went off to a solitary place, where he prayed.”
Mark 1 v 35
Jesus often tried to get away from the hordes to spend some quiet time, encouraging his disciples to do the same: “Come with me by yourselves to a quiet place and get some rest.” (Mark 6, V 31). It has to be said, though, it wasn’t always a successful strategy as He would often be spotted then engulfed by people all wanting to be near Him.
Nevertheless, it’s undeniable that finding time to hear that still quiet voice helps us all to stop, re-calibrate and focus on things more important than the next work deadline, mountainous washing, the state of the nation or endless roadworks.
St Just in Roseland Church and St Crida in Creed are two of the churches in the diocese that are currently holding quiet days. At St Just in Roseland they invite everyone to, “Come into His Presence. Our Quiet Days offer a chance to step out of busy lives and enter the presence of God for nourishment, refreshment, prayer, and reflection.” Located in such a beautiful part of Cornwall, nestling as it does on the banks of a tidal creek, it’s the perfect place to take some deep breaths and let the Holy Spirit do its work. The next one is on September 19th.
St Crida are holding their next quiet day this Friday, September 15th. Led by Revd Bridget Macaulay and entitled, “Meeting God at Every Turn.” The church is small and space is limited and, given the season, woollies are recommended for bodily warmth but all that you could need will be available for spiritual warmth. Quiet and peaceful, deep in the countryside, the church is a sanctuary most probably because of its praying past and the woman it takes its name after.
St Crida is an interesting saint – and not just because she’s a woman! Way back in the 5th Century when the British were on the run from the invading Saxons, many hid and then settled in Cornwall. Crida, the youngest daughter of King Mark who ruled over middle Cornwall, persuaded her father to build a nunnery on the banks of the Fal, protecting and caring for the missionaries who used their shores to come and go across the Channel to spread the Gospel. Crida encouraged the nuns to pray in a different place each day, knowing that Christ was with them as they did so, his feet touching the earth, making the ground Holy. So, the hope was that, eventually, everywhere be sanctified.
If you would like to take time out of your schedule and find some sanctuary for a day, click on the links to find out more or, make a specific space in your diary to be intentionally quiet and hear that still small voice of God.
“… Jesus often withdrew to lonely places and prayed.” (Luke 5 v 16)