I particularly enjoy co-leading retreats and welcome collaborating with people who have complementary skills eg yoga, dance, meditation, arts/creative facilitators, musicians etc. Retreatants with these skills are also encouraged to share their gifts if they choose.
I use my own words in retreats and those of visionary poets eg Mary Oliver, David Whyte, WB Yeats, TS Eliot, Naomi Shihab Nye, Rumi, Hafiz, Kerry Hardie, Galway Kinnell, Robert Frost and others.
The outside world is always part of the reatreat and so is silence. If possible, fire and sea are included.
Please contact me to explore possibilities.
To book a place on any of the following retreats please go to the website of the retreat house and book through them.
8-10 February – Following the Green Heart of the Snowdrop
Shepherd’s Dene Retreat House, Riding Mill, Northumberland
Following the Green Heart of the Snowdrop
It is the season of Imbolc and emerging as the earth re-awakens slowly. In this retreat, we will look at what is green and growing in our hearts and what needs to stay in the darkness at this time. We will do this through spending time with each element – earth air wind and fire. We will use the elemental outside spaces and cosy in the warmth of the house. We will be in silence and you are invited to bring your own creative materials eg paints, writing, photography etc if this would help your nourishment (this is optional). There will be time in the Chapel which will be Celtic, contemplative and embodied.
4 March – Finding the Way Home – A Quiet Day
“This is the temple of my adult aloneness
and I belong to that aloneness
as I belong to my life.
There is no house
like the house of belonging.”
-David Whyte: The House of Belonging
In our inner world, spiritual writers have often talked about a homelessness and many of us experience a searching in our spiritual journeys. This has been called “divine discontent” and St Augustine described our hearts as “restless”.
In the outside world we cannot forget the pictures on our screens of people having to escape their homes and countries. Our own home country is experiencing greater uncertainty since the referendum last June.
This day will explore what we mean by a sense of home and will explore our belonging to our bodies, ourselves, each other, the earth and the Divine. We will do this with the help of poetry, music, movement, creativity, prayer and silence, together and alone.
13 – 17 April – A Celtic Easter
Othona Burton Bradstock, Dorset
Lo, all my heart’s field red and torn
And thou wilt bring the young green corn……
-old English hymn
The Celts used to say their lives were inspired by two books – the Holy Scriptures and the book of Nature. We will allow both to lead us through our Easter journey. Beginning with the Gospel story, we will open out and follow the divine rhythm that is echoed in both books: of living, dying and new life. We will weave this with the truth of our own stories in poetry, music, pictures, ceremony, playing together, creativity, silence and all the earth and sea have to offer. Our chapel times will be Celtic in flavour but also drawing on the mystical traditions helping us to enter fully this most universal of stories on this earth that we share. Together we will have a creative, contemplative and earthy Easter.
3-7 July – Northern Spirit Pilgrimage
Staying at St Antony’s Priory, we will venture out to sites of pilgrimage:
“This earth we are riding keeps trying to tell us
something with its continuous scripture of leaves.” – William Stafford
This is a pilgrimage that will focus on the earth and the elements of each place that we visit and how the spirit of that place speaks to us. We will travel to Holy Island, Cuthbert’s Cave, Whitby and Durham Cathedral and hear the stories of Aidan, Hild and Cuthbert but we will also travel to some hidden places and see some cup and ring marked stones, moors, rivers, a well and a waterfall. We will walk to each place to sense the divine whispers in the strength of the land where other feet have trod so that the earth and human story, the past and the present moment will weave together with every step. Each day will be marked with poetry, silence, blessing and ritual in the beautiful chapel of St Antony’s and in each of the places we visit so we will journey with each other and with those who have gone before as well as paying attention to our own path. This pilgrimage is open to those with any faith or none.
16-22 September – Quiet Week
A week of quiet and nourishment with poetry, music, and pictures in chapel morning and evening.
Othona, Burton Bradstock, Dorset
17-23 September Quiet Week at Othona Burton Bradstock, Dorset
22-25 April – Re-Connecting to the Earth Retreat, with Matt Freer of Quiet Garden Trust, Ripon College Cuddesdon, nr Oxford.
16-18 March – Celtic Spirituality and Spring Equinox Retreat, Othona, Bradwell-on-Sea, Essex.
2-9 April – Four Elements Retreat, Isle of Iona, Scotland.
30 June-3 July – The Red Shoes Retreat for Women, Othona, Burton Bradstock, Dorset.
7-8 October – Celtic Spirituality Day, Manchester
27-30 August – “You do not have to be good”, Spiritual space in the Abide Tent, Greenbelt Arts Festival, Cheltenham, Glos.
8-10 October Women’s Retreat, “How does Prayer change us?”, St Ethelwold’s Abingdon, Oxon.
29-31 October Alternative Hallowe’en Retreat, Othona, Burton Bradstock, Dorset
6-7 February – Imbolc/Handmade Life Retreat for Women, The Abbey Sutton Courtenay, Oxon.
19-21 June – Summer Solstice Arts Retreat for Women, Holyrood House Thirsk, N.Yorks.
17-19 September – Autumn Equinox Retreat for Women, Vinalhaven Island, Maine, US