at St. Gregory's
Note: Our Wisdom Circle has moved from 5:30 to 6:00 and is currently partnering with Rabbi Shefa Gold's Love at the Center curriculum for a three-year study of The Song of Songs (Shir HaShirim), joined by friends from the local Jewish community, co-led by Lynna Schaefer and the Rev. Matthew Wright.
We are a circle exploring the Way of Love, a path of transformation and awakening found within and beyond all religious traditions. We are made up of Jews and Christians and any others who choose to join us. We do not seek or promote religious conversion—that is, conversion from one religion (or no religion) to another—but only conversion of the heart, teshuvah, the continual turning and returning to our Divine Source, to Love. We seek to reunite what has been broken in our hearts and our world, celebrating without rank or hierarchy the universal wisdom of both the Jewish and Christian traditions, of Moses and Jesus, of Torah and Gospel. We explore The Song of Songs (Shir HaShirim) as a primary text and template, shared by Judaism and Christianity, for walking on the Way of Love.
Spiritual awakening lies at the heart of the teachings of Jesus. And yet, traditional religious structures often seem to obscure that goal more than they serve it. How can the Church once again meet the deep yearning of our hearts? Recognizing the need for less formal and more contemplative forms of worship, as well as a renewed emphasis on the transformational and mystical dimensions of Christian teaching, St. Gregory's Wisdom Circle was born.
We gather on Wednesday nights at 6:00 in the church. We offer simple chants, engage scripture in the manner of lectio divina, sit in silent prayer, and share a simple Eucharist—the meal of bread and wine left to us by Jesus. In addition to the familiar gospels of Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John, we also draw on early Christian Wisdom gospels such as Thomas, Mary Magdalene, and Philip, the sayings of the Desert Mothers and Fathers, and the insights of Christian mystics throughout the ages.
We are particularly inspired by the work of Episcopal priest and teacher Cynthia Bourgeault. In Cynthia's words, "Wisdom describes a lineage of spiritual knowledge and practice that is principally concerned with the alchemy of transformation. It is not about knowing more, but about knowing more deeply, and can be recognized by an alert, present-moment awareness and a compassionate intelligence. The spiritual practices of attention and surrender are the banks between which Wisdom flows."
In silence and chant, in study and scripture, in bread and wine, we seek to imbibe and embody the Way of Wisdom.
Wisdom Circle gathers Wednesday evenings at 6:00 pm.
We are currently studying The Song of Songs.
All are welcome.