At our meeting after the Coronation of King Charles 111 we discussed the merits of meeting outdoors as opposed to indoors. We used a Celtic monastic tradition to consider. Wandering was a powerful practice inspired by the biblical story of Abraham. There is a unique term for this wandering: peregrinatio pro Christo, or the call to wander for the love of Christ. After our wanderings we came back with words and phrases that explained how we felt about outdoor worship. I have tried to put them together so we can use them in worship at another time. I said I was going to write a psalm. Perhaps it is, perhaps it isn’t.
It’s for all who choose to worship God outdoors.
A Psalm for Third Space
Oh, Bountiful God, we praise you for the infinite wonder of all that is
The minute and the mighty, the great and the small
For there is no greater beauty than this; Thank you.
We praise you in our coming and our goings
for all who are with us through the thresholds of our lives.
We thank you for this place, this place set apart for us
a microcosm in the round
For this group, this way, this welcome
This place to see God in variety, in livingness and colour
A cathedral of our own with no roof, no boundary, no limits, free for all
A place to be connected, privileged, and loved.
We praise you for the peace and the beauty
For dew drop diamonds nestling in sprigs of iridescent green
for misty mornings jewel studded spiders webs
For changes in the seasons
The noise and community
Traffic, talk and play.
The bread and wine
And for the bounty of grace.
Here we stand in a place built to blare our brass horn, drum, and pipe
Entwined and yet open
A place to listen
To one another, to prayer
To birdsong, perfectly turned as a choir calling out worship to the creator.
Praise you for the warmth of the sun, the chill of a winter’s day,
The gentle morning breeze and the wild winter wind in our hair.
A place to feel closer to God, woven into community and to share God’s love.
Bathed in prayer, beauty and light
May our legacy be carved into this place like stone pillars
May all be blessed and see glimpses of our wonderful world and beyond,
May they find this a thin place and experience something of God’s love.
And may we with the minute and the mighty praise God’s name forever.