In a time of closings, a Sacred Opening

Bruce Springsteen has a rousing rendition of the classic folk anthem “This Little Light of Mine” on his Live in Dublin album, which opens with Springsteen calling out to his keyboardist, “Charles, bring us home!” Charles Giodarno then jumps into play with a galvanizing rendition of the tune, setting the stage for The Boss, his band, and ultimately the whole audience to join in singing, dancing, and letting our light shine the rest of the way through the song.

“Charles, bring us home,” has become a sort of an anthem for our staff as well. For years, we  have asked our colleague Rev. Canon Charles Gibbs, CFP Senior Partner and Poet-in-Residence, to open
virtually all of our meetings and events with an invocation of the sacred. “Bringing us home” seems
like a fitting description of these sacred openings, which serve to ground us in our higher selves and deeper purpose, individually and collectively, and also to inspire us through invoking the universal wisdom available not only for us in that very specific moment, but for all of us universally, at all times.

You’re invited to join as Charles extends his offering for a broader audience. Beginning Monday at 9 am ET, Charles will be offering twice weekly live (non-denominational) Sacred Openings for the general public, via Facebook.

Our sacred openings have reminded us that even – perhaps especially – when things seem urgent, taking a moment to slow down and listen and remember can be the most important thing to do. It’s often precisely when it’s most needed that this kind of slowing and listening and inviting is the most difficult. For those of us committed to supporting positive, transformative social change in challenging times and circumstances, the pull to rapid, strong, outward action is constant.

And yet in our work we have experienced the irony that our most powerful action is sometimes simply stopping, and our best wisdom often comes through our not knowing. It is our willingness to be in the not-knowing and the not-doing that allows us to discover a deeper knowing and doing we are being called to and supported in, often in unexpected ways.

Collectively, we are in a time where we can all use a reminder of our deeper call and of the invisible resources available to us in support of that call, along with some help in inviting and invoking those resources to be present and active in our lives and in our day. Today. Here. Now.

Toward that end, we invite you to join us live for a collective experience of the sacred twice a week (for now) via the Catalyst for Peace Facebook page, on Mondays and Thursdays at 9 am ET. If you can’t make the live versions, you’re invited to view and use the recorded pieces at any time, on your own or together with your own group or (for now virtual) gathering.

The format is simple. Charles generally begins by sharing a poem, a piece of writing or an idea that frames and invites some time in silence together, after which he offers an invocation specific to the theme and the moment. Altogether, each Sacred Opening is likely to run 3-5 minutes.

Let us know what you think. We’re new to this technology and format for sharing, so we will no doubt be tweaking and adapting as we go, and your feedback will be very helpful in that process.

Watch this short video to hear Charles introduce the idea and the motivation behind it:

And then join us on Monday, March 30 at 9 am ET, and Mondays and Thursdays thereafter at the same time (for now), for a live experience of Sacred Opening. And again, these will be saved and accessible through our FB page at any time after they are offered, if you can’t make the live version.

With gratitude for your ongoing commitment to building peace…from the inside out.

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