The Degibna Prayer Chapel web pages
Degibna Prayer Chapel and Prayer Garden
Spring Newsletter 2019
Dear Friends, welcome and hospitality are at the heart of the Christian faith, because as the poet and priest Malcolm Guite says, ‘both are in the heart of God’. We remember Abraham and Sarah in their tent at Mamre (Genesis Chapter 18), welcoming their unknown guests. We remember Jesus, catching up a child in his arms and saying to the disciples; ‘Whoever welcomes one of these little children in my name, welcomes me’ (Mark Chapter 9 verses 36-17).
At Degibna Prayer Chapel, we continue in this tradition by welcoming a wide range of people, groups and individuals to share in the life of the place, use the facilities and in the peace and through the hospitality, we hope, gain a glimpse into the heart of God. In 2019 the new group ‘Crafty Ladies’ begins, alongside longstanding groups such as the Astronomy Society. The regular programme of Quiet Days and worship continues too. Opportunities to meet other friends of Degibna are at the annual Cream Tea and the new ‘friends’ socials held once a quarter, another chance to exercise hospitality and meet those who use the chapel but who don’t get to meet up often. It would be lovely to see you at one of these events.
The sea at Loe Bar is only about 20-30 minutes’ walk from the chapel depending on the length of your legs! The path takes you beside freshwater Loe pool and out onto the sand through a varied landscape of sights and sounds. The ever changing nature of the Bar and the storms of 2018 that have affected the beach and the cliff path to Porthleven illustrate how things don’t stay the same. Being near the sea and witnessing the power of wind and ocean reminds us of the sheer force of nature and the year the chapel roof blew off (2006).Yet it was that negative event which brought new life to the chapel. The words below, from Psalm 93 v 4, encourage us to trust in God even in difficult and challenging times when the usual path looks different ahead, the way seems hard or unknown and new plans need to be made for the future.
Mightier than the thunder of the great waters,
mightier than the breakers of the sea –
the LORD on high is mighty
Thankfully God is with us, more powerful than anything or anyone on earth.
Spring is already coming to the Prayer Garden: primroses, daffodils, crocuses, hellebores and more are all flowering. It is a lovely time to visit, so if you have not been recently, do come to any of our events, try one of the local walks or just spend time wandering and wondering in the Garden. From time to time we hear stories of people, otherwise unconnected with the chapel, who visit the garden regularly or occasionally, finding peace and refreshment. We hope to arrange a couple of working parties this spring and summer. All volunteers welcome!
There are many books about to read specifically at Lent and Easter. One published for 2019 is called the ‘Merciful Humility of God’ by Jane Williams. It sounds intriguing. How do you prepare for Holy Week and Easter? At the Prayer Chapel this year Helen Purchase will be helping us do just that on Saturday April 13th. Why not set this time aside and draw breath for a day?
Degibna Prayer Chapel News
The chapel will be open all day on Sundays from Easter to the end of September. This is a move of ‘radical hospitality’ when we offer the facilities; tea, coffee and use of the toilet to passers-by.
Please feel free to come along to the Vision and AGM afternoons: two separate events when we gather to pray and seek God’s will for the chapel. Please come along and keep in touch by being a Friend or following the chapel on Facebook, or both!
Every Blessing and please pray for the work and Vision at Degibna Prayer Chapel
Rev Amanda Stevens (01326 561792) on behalf of the Prayer Chapel Team.
John and Jackie Allen have now moved to Lancashire to be near family. Both were involved in the vision for Degibna Prayer Chapel from the beginning. John’s contribution in designing the refurbishment scheme and as treasurer and property steward for many years is incalculable. We think of them with much gratitude and affection. We also want to thank John Bilkey for taking over as treasurer. John already looks after our website (do visit if you have access) and has several other ‘hats’ so we trust this new role is not too onerous. Anne Moyle has stepped down as booking secretary after many years but is still much involved at Degibna. Thank you, Anne. Theresa Hosking in the Circuit Office has taken over the administration of bookings and a small team of volunteers arrange the hospitality. We receive much encouraging feedback from visiting groups.
The last circuit meeting of 2018 agreed our revised vision statement which is, in summary:
We seek to be a place set apart for worship and wonder,
reflection and refreshment, peace and prayer, hospitality and healing.
As a Circuit, District and Ecumenical resource,
we seek to be used by individuals and groups from the wider community.
All are welcome in this place.
Thank you for supporting and being part of this vision. I am delighted to report that to date we have 56 Friends of Degibna Prayer Chapel, including several new Friends. We are grateful for each and every one. In February we held our second Friends Social. It was a lovely, informal occasion. If you live nearby, why not come along to the next ones (May & September)? And don’t forget our annual cream tea in July. Last year we had a record number attending, but we can always squeeze in a few more!
Thank you for your support and a special thank you for your prayers. We have seen over the years how God does answer prayer; not always as we expect, but sometimes beyond our expectations. Please pray for us, as we pray for you. We are always pleased to hear from you by letter, phone or email. If you have questions or suggestions or wish to be included in our prayers, do get in touch.
Rev Andrew Hill, Chair of Vision & Management Team