Ambient prayer / Saturday 10th February
February’s Grace will be the second ‘ambient prayer’.
The first one is already in the archive - this one will be similar in format but with different images, movie, playlist, prayers. The intention is develop a series with a repeating form but different flavours of prayer.
Followed by the café.
Updated archive with photos
The services and events pages of the archive are being updated with photos, in a section at the bottom of each page. At the moment the photos have been added up to the end of 2006, with more ongoing, and the services since last September also have photos.
The photos begin in May 1998 when Steve bought a camera and started to take them. There are many photos that haven't been published previously - maybe the minor services, or the photos that aren’t the striking images used for publicity but which are still a record of an event. Sometimes there are nice photos but no record of what was actually going on! Or no photos of what must surely have been a good-looking service.
The archive has also been expanded with additional material from the early years. Several missing services have been added, and things like Shed Obscura and the Grace ethos weekend in 2005 get their own pages. There are still gaps - we didn’t have an official archive until the new database website of 2006.
Before 2006 we didn't have flyers for each event, just the printed ones, annual or quarterly. They have been added to the service pages. Sometimes they're the only image or source of information!
Ambient prayer / Saturday 13th January
January and February’s Grace are ‘ambient prayer’.
Expect something minimal - ambient music, low light in the dark of winter, an image to ponder, space to breathe, a candle, silence, a few guiding thoughts for prayer.
Followed by a café.
Christmas labyrinth / Saturday 9th December
Join us for a meditative and prayerful Christmas labyrinth, a peaceful evening before the hectic part of the season gets going.
When we first did labyrinths in the 1990s, there was a four-part structure about our relationships with God, Self, Others and Planet, with the labyrinth itself being about God and the other three as stations. Given current situations this structure seems very relevant.
There will be mulled wine and mince pies in the cafe afterwards.
30 / Heaven Exists
For our 30th birthday Lynda commissioned an astonishing cake, called 'Heaven Exists', made by Nastassja at The Indulgent Sugar Plum. Here she is giving a short explanation of the cake (she did a longer one in the service). It was an apple cake (referencing Adam and Eve!) covered with dark and white chocolate, with edible 'angel feathers' and integrated lighting.
30 / Saturday 11th November
11th November is Grace's 30th birthday service - to mark the occasion we will be meeting around a table for a service of Communion by Numbers. Meeting around a table has been a large part of the Grace experience and sitting at a table with food and conversation we meet our companions, ourselves and sometimes God.
We'd love to see old friends and new around the table on 11th November - there will be food, drinks and music. It would be great to know if you plan to join us.
Grace2 / Saturday 14th October
In 2005 at a Grace weekend we came up with an ethos (long and short list) to sum up our values and to be a touchpoint for us in the years ahead - a reminder of what we hope to do and be as Grace.
In the run-up to our 30th anniversary in November, we thought it would be good to revisit the ethos - does it still work for us? We have changed, the times have changed, does our ethos need to change, in order to represent and guide us now and in the future?
This will be a cafe-format evening - please bring food and drink to share.
Grace / Saturday 9th September
Yes September's Grace is about grace! Strange to think we last did this theme in 2001...
What does grace (not Grace!) mean for you? Please bring something about your experiences of grace, to share with us - it could be a reflection, music, ritual, story, poem, image...
Cafe after as usual - please be gracious and bring some food and drink to share :)
Barbecue / Saturday 8th July
On Saturday we are having our annual barbecue at St. Mary's Ealing. And the weather forecast is excellent (for the time being)! It would be great to see you - please bring something to drink and something for the barbecue.
Wolf Fields / Saturday 10th June
The next Grace is at Wolf Fields in Southall. We helped design and create an outdoor labyrinth for the nature reserve there. So it seems a good idea to make the most of it and visit occasionally! So note once again Grace will not be at St Mary’s and is not at the usual time. Here’s what you need to know:
We will gather at Wolf Fields, Southall at 5pm. In part this is so that children and families can join in. There will be a fire, a big area to explore, an outdoor labyrinth to walk and tea and refreshments. We will run through until about 7pm. If you have not been there before it is not the park, it is the nature reserve which you access by going down a path to the left of the pub. Ring Jonny on 07957639393 if you get lost.
Then afterwards for anyone interested we will head to get a curry in Southall. It would be good to know numbers for that so please let us know if you are planning to come to that. We’d love to see you there.
Prospect Wood / Saturday 13th May
The next Grace is in Prospect Wood (in Sussex) on Saturday May 13th. It will run for the whole day rather than the usual evening. If you would like to come please email us a.s.a.p. so we can give you more info and organise lift shares and so on. All welcome but please don’t leave it until the last minute. The email is firstname.lastname@example.org
Easter vigil / Saturday 8th April
Grace falls on Holy Saturday so this month’s Grace is an Easter Vigil. We’ll be beginning with the cafe open at 9:30pm and then Grace will begin at 10pm mixing the traditional fire lighting, candle procession and readings with Grace’s own take and flavour on proceedings. Hope to see you there.
Lent blogs 2003-2008
The Lent blogs 2003-2008 are back in the archive. It only took nine years to do it!
Some of the images haven't made it back. Size and resolution have moved on a bit in 15 years.
Praying with a lump in our throat / Saturday 11th March
March Grace will be an evening that is prayer focused - praying with a lump in our throat - as we pray for and with those at the edges. We'd love you to join us. Cafe afterwards.
Open Table / Saturday 11th February
Join us for Grace where there will as ever be an open table.
We have always been inspired by Christ’s welcome of all around the table, especially those at the fringes. We will be gathering to continue that practice, and remember him.
You are of course welcome!
Labyrinth / Saturday 14th January
Join us for Grace0123 to walk a labyrinth - Saturday 14 January 8pm at St Mary’s Ealing.
A quiet reflective space for prayer and meditation with a soundscape of ambient music. Cafe afterwards.
Advent Grace TV / Saturday 10th December
If it's hard to see where God is in current events, and hard to feel hope for the future, imagine what it was like to hear nothing from God for four centuries. Centuries full of empires and atrocities, with only the long-unfulfilled words from the past to feed faith.
And then something happened (so small that hardly anyone noticed at the time).
Join us for a quiet reflective service on how that long Advent sheds light for today. Café afterwards as usual.
An Honorable Harvest / Saturday 12th November
How can we hold, feel and respond to everything coming at us right now? We’ve just about got through a pandemic but now feel involved in every disaster, act of political insanity, injustice, and sadness happening across the planet 24/7.
Let’s try and make some sense of this together at Grace on Saturday 12th November. 8pm at St Mary’s, W5.
Alice In Wonderland Eucharist / Saturday 8th October
The next Grace will be led by Tina Hodgett and Kathryn Marson. They have crafted a rather delightful and playful liturgy fusing Holy Communion and Alice In Wonderland. It was created for the Holy Rumpus in the South West of England for a gathering of pioneers. Intrigued? Come along and see how deep the rabbit hole goes. It will be relaxed, gathered around the table followed by a cafe. Everyone is welcome. And of course do feel free to dress accordingly if you would like to!
On The Threshold / Saturday 10th September
Grace is back for another year (our new year is always September!). Do come and join us for some fresh vital worship, based around a poem by David Benjamin Blower. It will be a chance to reconnect to God and to one another - God knows we need both in the world we are in right now. There will be a cafe afterwards. We’d love to see you there.