My visit to the Borough Hall in this town brought to mind another location for a sunshine. Today I went to the Church of the Advent to set the sunshine in their peace garden.
I am familiar with this church. It’s one of the few in our area that has an open door all day long – the chapel is open from seven in the morning to seven at night and a sign on the lawn is what originally caught my attention last year when I first visited. I am not a churchgoer now, but I have always felt that churches are places for rest and contemplation, and I appreciated the generosity of this one’s congregation in sharing their space to anyone who seeks it out.
First I set the sunshine in the peace garden. Right now it’s snow-covered but in better weather it is planted and colorful. I put the sunshine on the little stone wall along with some offerings by other people. I noticed the rhododendron bushes with their curled-up leaves and the bare branches of the trees – these will all be changed very soon when warm weather comes, and for now they are beautiful in their winter forms.
I came to this church quite a few times last year when I was ill, just to sit in the quiet building. I’ve never encountered anyone else there and it always gave me a space to collect my thoughts and rest. The building is small but solidly built of stone, with beautiful colorful windows. On a gusty day like today, the wind’s roar is muted and there is a sense of safety in this place.
I signed my name in the visitors’ book and I looked back to last year’s pages to find it there, just as I wrote it then. Quite a few names have been added in the intervening time. I lit a candle and waited for it to get a good flame going – it joined one other. I revisited the images on the windows and I also looked up at the roof – the solid beams and the open structure somehow seem very reassuring to me. They are beautiful and strong.
I am glad to visit this place a year later and see that it has not changed much but that things have progressed for me.
You can find out more about the Sunshine Project here or you can search the category “Sunshine Project”.