community

If you can imagine…

If you can imagine a tiny village in France, with 11th-18th century buildings covered in moss and vines, and daffodils and green paddocks stretching as far as one can see –

If you can imagine getting sunburnt one day and snowed upon the next, bare trees and blue skies, biting winds and freezing evenings –

If you can imagine two thousand Portuguese students and two hundred other individuals singing and praying three times a day in a sprawling, candle lit church –

If you can imagine being one of only two native English speakers, and having a 1/5 chance of a song being in your language, and listening while each Bible passage is read aloud in three languages (thankfully English is always included) –

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If you can imagine prayer first thing in the morning and last thing at night and discussion groups of individuals from every religious and non religious background imaginable –

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If you can imagine white robed Brothers in church and then the same ones in fleece jackets and slacks afterwards. If you can imagine Sisters from 3 different orders in jeans and cardigans –

If you can imagine cocoa in a bowl and bread with chocolate sticks for breakfast and some variation on pasta, green apples, beans/peas, cheese and bread for every meal –

If you can imagine long queues filled with singing Portuguese students and longer walks in the French countryside –

If you can imagine endless barricks and tents and a garden of silence complete with a lake –

If you can imagine all this, perhaps you can imagine a community called Taize.

How to hold onto COMMUNITY lightly

‘Community.’ In certain circles (or communities!) the word ‘Community’ is a ‘buzzword’. I think as the years go by and technology gives us the freedom to be more isolated, Western society is beginning to realise the importance of community.

In one sense none of us can escape ‘community’. We all belong to one, even if it’s online or our membership is involuntary (ie. the community of our neighbourhood). We’re all part of wider bodies of people outside of our nuclear family, with which we have something in common (ie. location, gender, race, nationality – to name the obvious ones).

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How to hold onto (your) BODY IMAGE lightly

Body image. It’s an ‘in’ word, and means different things to different people. It’s also an easy word to pin onto someone else. They struggle with body image because they are… a teenager… female… overweight… underweight… single… In reality, however, we all struggle with body image.

Body image is (wait for it!) how we view our body. And as we all have opinions about the image we present to others and to ourselves, this post is applicable for all of us.

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