May 2024 Magazine Letter

Mary Henley

Mary Henley

Parish Safeguarding Officer
01580 891225
Email: Mary Henley


You may have joined the BBC’s Easter ‘Pilgrimage’ this Easter, following a group of ‘pilgrims’ walking the Noth Wales Pilgrims Way. The series took the usual format: assorted (usually lesser) celebrities are gathered to walk together a well-trodden pilgrimage route, visiting holy or ancient sites on the way, and staying overnight at basic accommodation along the journey. The pilgrimage has a destination in sight, in this instance Bardsey Island, but the main meat of the experience is in the walking and talking together.

‘Pilgrimage: the Road through North Wales’ is available on BBC iplayer.

The participants usually include people from different faith backgrounds (not necessarily practising) and some from none, but all with a willingness to talk about faith or the absence of it, and to explore and share individual yearnings toward the spiritual. Some individuals may have recently passed through a personal crisis and hope to refocus and heal their lives. The interaction with the landscape, weather and other personalities heightens the willingness to have increasingly heartfelt discussions. One of the keynotes of the series is the readiness of the participants to listen empathetically to each other.

The series gives voice to the desire many of us have to express spirituality we find within ourselves. We may try to find a purpose of our lives, to grope for understanding following a traumatic event, be moved in awe at the natural world, or seek comfort from feeling we are held within a greater whole. At a time when many of us find world events gloomy, worrying and dispiriting, to awaken and name the spiritual can calm, comfort, inspire and energise.

If you would like to find out more about the coming of the Spirit to Jesus’s disciples, ……. join the congregation at All Saints’ Church on Sunday 19th May at 10am.

After Jesus’s ascension to heaven, the disciples found themselves at a low point. They were bereft: bewildered, frightened and unable to act. But Acts 2 tells of how God’s Spirit came to the disciples as they huddled together behind closed doors
‘And suddenly from heaven there came the sound like a rush of a violent wind…….divided tongues, as of fire, appeared among them, and a tongue rested on each of them’.

What a transformation came to the disciples as they were filled with the Spirit: they burst outside, bold and empowered and ready to tell the world of Christ’s resurrection!

Christians believe that when hearts and minds are opened to the Holy Spirit, to God’s power within us, then God will inspire, energise and fulfil our lives:

‘the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control’ Galatians 5 v22-23

With my best wishes, Mary

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