The St Mark’s Labyrinth, laid each year during Holy Week and Advent, allows visitors to shut out the busy world and contemplate God in a different way. Sheena explains what the Labyrinth means to her:
“When the labyrinth first came to St Mark’s I was very sceptical: I couldn’t see how walking around a maze on the church floor could add anything to my faith journey, especially if that walk was to be shared with others.
“Just to be polite, I gave it a try….and was converted.
“I was involved in the creating of the labyrinth now used at St Mark’s and that very act of creation has enhanced my appreciation of and connection to the labyrinth.
“As we walk around, following the twists and turn, it appears that we are getting close to the centre, and then we seem to be walking away again, going back to the beginning… and then around the outside. We become involved in the journey, not just seeing it as a painting on the floor”.
“At St Mark’s, our labyrinth opens out to the altar, where we are invited to sit for a while, and contemplate, think about where we have been, where we are going.
“As we walk the labyrinth , sometimes we are aware of someone walking towards us, we have a choice; step out of the way and let them pass; keep our head down, pretend they are not there; look up and smile, acknowledge their presence, pilgrims on the same path. All of this reflects the choices we have in life.
“And then, at last, we reach the centre. Stay a while, pray, just sit. Is this our destination, or simply another stopping point on our journey?
“The path out of the labyrinth is the same as the path in… except that it isn’t. The same twists and turns, the same journey to the edge and then back in again, but we are changed, We pass different people, perhaps no one at all. We are changed. As we reach the end, we become aware of the world around, the sounds of the traffic outside, noises in church.
“We sit for a while… shoes back on and back to reality, but as a different person, having experienced something mysterious, magical perhaps, beyond comprehension”.
You can find an extended version of this reflection, along with two others, on the Labyrinth Playlist on our YouTube channel.