Interfaith Foundation



Interfaith Foundation


OneSpirit News
August 2016


To trust is to reflect the light of a million stars
Through your eyes
And know that in the presence of such love
Lives will be touched by your radiance

To plunge fearlessly into the vast ocean of life
With an open heart and a quiet mind
And watch miracle after miracle flow forth
From the Mind of God through you

To embrace the darkness in full gratitude
And when the light of dawn arrives
To fall in love again
And allow Grace to create another day

Written and contributed by Wendy Frances Hoy


Reverend 'means reverence for all life' 

27 new OneSpirit interfaith ministers were ordained on 23 July at our annual ceremony in London. Giving the charge to the Class of 2016, faculty lead Jackie Amos-Wilkinson at one point spoke directly to those still unsure where their ministry will lead, reminding them: "almost everyone in this country is feeling how unsettling it is, to not know". It is their job, she said, to help to meet the widespread hunger for love. "From this extraordinary day, you have the freedom to use the title reverend not to elevate yourself, but to remind you of your reverence for all life." You can view the video of her address here.  
New ministers: 'You Break my Heart, Open With Love'
One of the highlights on Ordination Day was the Class of 2016 performing their own song, co-written by Amy Firth and Neil Deuchar (pictured), which could well become a OneSpirit anthem. Both played guitar during the performance, as Amy's soaring vocals were backed by the whole class singing the chorus. The class had helped with writing the words, and Amy and Neil had recorded the song so classmates could practice at their final retreat, preparing for the Ordination ceremony.  You can also listen to it here
Blog on Ordination attracts over 1,500 readers

OneSpirit's focaliser, Nicola Coombe, tapped a deep wellspring when she posed the question, in her most recent blog: "Ordination: On whose authority?" Many people urged friends to read it on social media, and the article has had well over 1,500 'hits' so far. The quick version of her answer is: "On the natural, pre-ordained, ordinary, sacred, original, essential Authority of who we truly are. On the self-affirmed authority of the Divine Self, the Inner Teacher, the God Within, the Great Silence, the Source, the Call It What You Will....". You can still read the blog, and also view Nicola's Ordination Day address here.  
Personal reflections on being ordained - twice!

Ordination Day had an extra dimension for Ian Bonner-Evans, previously ordained as a Christian minister in 2001. In an article on our website, he reflects that his training, ordination, and subsequent role as a Christian pastor were very "head orientated", whereas the OneSpirit training helped him "to grow emotionally, psychologically and spiritually". Ian's experience of the two ordination ceremonies was very different too. "My recent ordination," he writes, "was an expansive, heart-opening and life-affirming experience, which in some inexplicable way has brought about a form of completion for me."
Time for a gentle experiential taste of our training?     

Our season of Introductory Events is now well underway. Designed to help potential students decide whether the OneSpirit training is right for them, these events last about three hours, are free of charge and without commitment. They typically take place over an afternoon, involve about 12-15 people, and are a great opportunity to meet some faculty, ministers and current students, and get a gentle experiential taste of the training. Events coming up are at: Findhorn, 28 Aug; London, 10 Sept & 8 Oct; Manchester & Copenhagen, 17 Sept; Glastonbury, 24 Sept; and Brighton, 1 Oct. There's more information here on the website. You can also download the prospectus booklet.    
United in Friendship, Not Fear, in Worcester    
OneSpirit minister Sheila Simmonds and other members of Worcestershire Interfaith Forum were shocked by the increase in race hate incidents after the Brexit vote. On 6 July they stood in the city centre, asking passers-by if they would like to have their photo taken beside their banner, 'United in Friendship, Not Fear'. Some 140 agreed, and their photos will be made into a collage poster to be circulated locally. "I came away from the whole day buzzing with energy," said Sheila, "with positive feelings of being brothers and sisters in faith and unity."

Pictured: Rev Sheila with Rev Ian Spencer of Worcester's Holland House Christian Retreat Centre, and two passers-by.
Close-to-home Convocations build community

null This summer OneSpirit decided not to have a centrally-organised annual convocation of ministers and students, which usually involves many people travelling long distances to a single venue. Instead, ministers were invited to set up their own smaller local gatherings. So far, 7 events have taken place, and another 8 are scheduled in September across the UK, Ireland and beyond. Most Close-to-home Convocations have been in ministers' homes, but one was in the meeting rooms of the famous brewery in Burton-on-Trent, where this group of ministers raised a glass during their break. More details here.  
Razia releases "album of love songs to Spirit"

Brighton-based minister Razia Aziz has completed what she calls "my album of love songs to Spirit". It's called, simply, Hungry (cover pictured), and went on general release priced £7.99 on iTunes and other music portals in July. The album, says Razia, is "a kind of map of my spiritual journey. It owes so much to my experience at the Seminary, the Ordination, and the wonderful support of my fellow ministers." She composed 12 of the 13 tracks, including the Blessed Song Cycle, which the class of 2011 sang at Ordination. 
If you would like to support the work of the OneSpirit Interfaith Foundation please use JustTextGiving on your mobile phone. Text 'sprt00' and the amount eg, £10 to 70070. Thank you for your kind support.  


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