I can see you will all be wondering, what on earth was that about.
I quote: “The saltshaker session is a very informal event offering an opportunity to explore together appropriate ways of reflecting God’s love through our outreach initiatives. As we do this we will be able to offer each other encouragement and support.”
This was a great start to a new triennial, new trustee body and a new Diocesan President. Catherine Kyte and Jane Groves came from Mary Sumner House to facilitate the session.
As with any MU event we started with prayer:
We come as we are Loving God, just
as we are. We bring with us all the
pieces of our lives, things that
occupy our minds and take our
energy; hopes and fears, tasks and
tears, the trivial and the
of the day.
Focusing on Matthew 5: verses 13-16.
The first session we looked at the range of ways we as individuals have experienced a sense of the love God has for us. This showed the many ways the members of the Trustees have known God’s love for them in their daily lives or in a special event. It was good to have a few minutes in twos talking and discussing how God’s love had been shown to us.
The second session thought about how we could reflect God’s love through outreach initiatives, in ways that feel appropriate to us as individuals. I am sure our members could identify with this, with the work they do and encourage others to participate.
We as a Diocese are doing much already; in the welcome packs for the Away From It All holidays we include a note “with love from the Mothers’ Union” and this year each family received a Christmas card, showing they had not been forgotten. The knitted teddies given to children suffering from a tragedy, which now also have a little note attached, saying, “Knitted with love from the Mothers’ Union.” Our members have contact with Women’s Refuges, giving help by donating toiletries and clothes. I know you can add many more acts of love to these two examples.
Session three: How can we nurture our own faith? Mark 9: 50 “Salt is good, but if it loses its saltiness, how can you make it salty again? Have salt among yourselves and be at peace with each other.” This demonstrated our need to stop and reflect occasionally, perhaps with a retreat, quiet day or evening – keep a watch on the What’s On page for notices of such events.
Session four: We considered various case studies and how we would react and help.
The last session was to demonstrate how we could thank God. A plastic ball was thrown backwards and forwards with each catching person thanking God for an event or organisation in their life – a wonderful fun way and one to end a helpful, exploring day with friends.
We ended by joining hands to say the grace.
I hope this short article has whetted your appetite – we may extend this to branches or deaneries.