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Pastor's Corner

Staff Speaks - 2024 Lent

Hear from Staff members on sacred spaces

 

 

Eric Whitesell


Sacred space


A sacred space to me is any place where I can watch nature taking its course. I love being able to stop and observe the natural world around me, and see how much is going on right underneath my feet. Some examples that come to mind are: 


  • Coming across a hive of bees that had taken up residence in some old plumbing by a hiking trail

  • Seeing an acorn woodpecker collecting acorns and storing them in a nearby tree

  • Getting to know all the different types of birds that live nearby

  • Seeing different plants come and go with the changing seasons


It reminds me of my natural place in the ecosystem, and grounds me.


 

Seton Fogel


While I was abroad in Bordeaux, France, one of the many tourist attractions of the city I would visit was the Miroir D’eau, or the Water Mirror. It’s a beautiful reflecting pool located on the river quay. While the university was closed due to strikes, I found myself walking to this place to recenter my thoughts. I would put in my headphones and pick up a sandwich and just be by the waters. Sometimes I would take off my shoes to stand in the waters. For being in the city center, it was never too loud.


Like many others, I feel deeply connected to this place and I mentally put myself here in rough times.



 

Maks Miner

Hello Harbor!


It’s been a wonderful winter but I’m very ready for springtime. I’ve started to spend more and more time outside enjoying the sunshine (whenever the weather permits) and more time at the beach.


Recently, one of my close friends had her second child, so I've been spending a lot of time getting newborn snuggles, and even more time attempting to entertain an energetic 2-year-old.


When I started thinking about what makes a space sacred, I kept thinking about the moments I spent with this little kid. A quick walk to a park across the street often takes us 20 or so minutes, as he stops to look at every interesting rock and bug and leaf. There is never a hurry on these walks—getting to the park seems to almost be forgotten as his priority is delight. Delight at all the small things we pass every single day.


There seems to be something sacred in this act of giving attention. It transforms the mundane street into a vibrant reflection of the diversity of the earth. Everything that seemed so important before feels a little different after a morning of watching snails cross the sidewalk.


I now have a little shelf in my kitchen where I keep some of the interesting rocks, twigs, and shells we stumble across. To me, this is a way of bringing those sacred moments of connection and attention into my house. I hope to keep this little altar growing throughout the year.


I am so excited for the coming months at Harbor, I know there are a lot of incredible things planned. This community means so much to me, and I love being a part of it!


 

Lauren Graham

When I lived in my home in Westminster, there was a large blocked in piece of land behind our fenced in yard. The owners of the land were keeping it blocked to prepare for a larger development project. In the back of this overgrown field sat forgotten structures left to nature and curious visitors. I don’t know if the surrounding homes created a kind of sound buffer but the ambient noise of the world noticeably shifted when you stepped into this field. A vacuum that gave the impression of walking into a pocket world.


I would spend hours sitting and listening to wind shimmy through the long grass or sit and wonder about the people who lived in the worn-down home, reflecting on my own life. I think because of the known impermanence of this place, it felt deeply sacred and my experience of it special. This was also during the time of Pandemic shut down, and so these time-worn shelters acted as a kind of church - a sacred place to visit when the world became too much and my spirit needed a reprieve.



 

Thank you for reading!


If you wish to continue reading our 2024 Lent Newsletter in the recommended reading order, please click on the next post shown below in the Related Posts section.
 

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