As this social distancing extends into a future for an unknown time, we will all become more anxious to be about our normal activities, especially as the weather warms up, the grass turns green, and the wildflowers begin to bloom. Many in this more rural area have places where they can continue to keep a healthy distance from crowds and get out of the house. For others who live in apartments or neighborhoods, that may be more difficult. The beautiful grounds of St. Philip’s Episcopal Church provide opportunities for walking or sitting on benches, for private prayer and contemplation, and more. Now more than ever, the labyrinth, Camino Sagrado, provides a place to pray for the health and wellbeing of individuals and community. There are lovely benches that sit near a trickling fountain and beneath a mighty oak tree which has survived for many generations. The possibilities beyond walking the labyrinth in that setting might include taking along your Bible, the Book of Common Prayer or another book to read, a sketch book, needle work, notecards to write to someone who can’t get out at all, or even a yoga mat. In addition to the labyrinth, the nearby Stations of the Cross offer yet another way to center oneself. You might possibly want to visit the columbarium and the saints who abide there.
If you arrive and someone else is already strolling or sitting on a bench, remember to keep a healthy distance. Wave or bow or send a peace sign or some other greeting to let them know they are loved. It might be good to take along hand sanitizer or hand wipes to clean your hands before and after using the informational kiosks or to wipe off the bench where you sit. Please take any used wipes with you as you leave.
Stay well physically, mentally and spiritually as we muscle on until we can again meet together to worship and share in the Holy Eucharist and each other’s precious company.