Chair's July Blog: Here's to a Summer of Stories, Prayer, Praise and Thanksgiving

This is the month when the last weeks of the summer term tumble over each other in a riot of picnics, summer fetes and sports days. Life is more ‘outside’ and relaxed, holidays are on the horizon and everyone just seems friendlier.  As we meet, greet, walk and talk with each other this summer, may the eloquence of our speakers, and of our response to one another, fill this glorious month with our prayer, praise and thanksgiving.

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Chair's BlogAnne Dixon
Chair's June Blog: 'Wherever you are is called Here, And you must treat it as a powerful stranger’

What is CPW’s ‘here’? Can you imagine yourself in a CPW landscape? A mountainside? A garden? A forest? Look around you. What do you see? What can you hear? Let me show you four places that I saw when I looked around CPW, and four accompanying scriptures that I ‘heard’. I offer these pictures, these places, as a means of discovering together CPW’s ‘Here’.

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Chair's BlogAnne Dixon
Escape on Foot: CPW Walking Week 2019 Report

Mike Winston shares his report of the 2019 Walking Week at Willersley Castle near Matlock. In the words of one of the group he recalls that there was “over everything, an awareness of the presence of God in nature, in the stones on our path, in words spoken out-loud or in the depths of our hearts - a precious closeness with one another, immediate and lasting.” Read the full report here.

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Chair's May Blog: Power and Tenderness - A Starting Point for Wisdom

Wisdom is something we hear in the words of others or see in the actions of the inspired. The Truly Wise are giants in our moral and spiritual landscape. We are drawn to them but also in awe of them. Jean Vanier, founder of the L’Arche communities, who died earlier this month, was one of these giants. The transformational effect of wise judgement is made possible by the presence of compassion and vulnerability: tenderness to ourselves and others. The role models are out there if we choose to seek them.

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Anne Dixon
CPW Winter Weekend 2019 Report

Mary Ring reviews our first CPW event of 2019 - a winter weekend at Boars Hill titled ‘Church at the Crossroads: Responding to Challenging Times’. Mary writes: '‘As majority shareholders in the Roman Catholic institution, we lay people are co-responsible for its credibility and effectiveness in sharing this Word. It’s our duty to call now for change and growth. One of the best ways to do this is for Catholic parishioners to start talking safely and respectfully about new ways forwards.”

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Mary Ring
Chair's March Blog: What if... we let our imaginations roam freely?

Sometimes ‘more’ is the solution, but not always. Sometimes we need to take a step back to see if ‘other’ is the answer this time. And that’s where the imagination comes into play. The same could be said of our explorations into the future possibilities for our Church. Do we need ‘more’ of what we’ve always done (bigger, better, stronger, higher, fuller, firmer)? Or dare we consider ‘other’ (stranger, different, smaller, deeper, easier, kinder, looser)?

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Chair's BlogAnne Dixon
CPW in the Independent Catholic News

CPW hit the news this week with a full article in the Independent Catholic News written by CPW member Ellen Teague. Titled ‘Catholic Peoples Weeks getting underway for 2019’’, the article reports on our first event of 2019, as well as our forward-looking events for the year.

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Sarah Dixon
The Three Magic Words you Should Say this Valentine’s Day

CPW members Joy and Mike Wanless were recently invited to share what they had learnt during their 40 years of marriage at the Salford Diocesan Blessing for Engaged couples . With many couples present, they reminded the couples of the importance of spending time together and talked about the blessings of Catholic Peoples’ Weeks. This is Joy’s reflection on marriage, the importance of mutual support, and CPW.

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Member ArticlesJoy Wanless
Chair's February Blog: Let's talk about... Words

How many times have we heard politicians adopt predictable and polarised positions in public debate? On matters which affect our children's and grand-children's future, we expect those in positions of responsibility to engage in a meaningful exchange of ideas. Where is the generosity, the openness, 'the words to consider, reconsider'? The answer is that we have the words. We keep them close to our hearts and only speak them when we are in a trusted environment where we are loved, valued and listened to. At CPW we aim to create these environments; sacred places for meaningful conversations, with each other, ourselves and our God. It is our meaningful conversations which will transform our view of the future.

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Anne Dixon
Living Beyond Conformity: Remembering Fr. Owen Hardwicke

Remembering much-loved CPW chaplain Owen Hardwicke. Owen was a gifted wordsmith and the author of Living Beyond Conformity: (Experience of Ministry and Priesthood). Owen devoted his life to serving those who "danced in the margins of ecclesial life."  A beautiful and touching eulogy was given by Fr, Rob Esdaile at Owen's funeral. We have published it on the CPW website with his permission.

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Sarah Dixon
The Sultan and the Saint - Private Viewing in Cardiff on Friday 1st Feb 2019

CPW members are invited to attend a private viewing of The Sultan and The Saint at Vue cinema Cardiff on Friday 1st February 2019 at 7pm. This event is taking place in the 800th anniversary year of the little-known, ground-breaking encounter between the Christian, Saint Francis of Assisi, and the Muslim, Sultan Malik Al-Kamil: at Damietta in northern Egypt, in the midst of the horrors of the Crusades. The docu-drama is an hour long and will be followed by a Q&A discussion.

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NewsSarah Dixon
'Ringing out the Old, Ringing in the New' - My CPW Highlights from 2018

The turn of the year is a time when we naturally stop and consider where we have been and wonder what the future may hold. Looking back over 2018 my CPW highlights have been those which are unlikely to feature in the newsletter reports. They are background moments, hidden breakthroughs which keep our wonderful organisation growing and maturing in response to contemporary challenges. Today, I would like to share five moments in 2018 which made a difference to me; as well as what I’m looking forward to for CPW in 2019.

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Anne Dixon