CPW Hyning Summer 2019 Report: 'My Life Changing Experience at Hyning'

Report | Living the Sacred: Blessing, Holiness and Incarnation in Our Everyday Lives - Hyning, 15-19 July 2019

Hyning chaplain

A few days ago I attended the Catholic People's Week at Hyning. It was an amazing experience that has had a tremendous impact on me and changed my life!

The course, entitled 'Living the Sacred', dealt in depth with the connection between the Old Testament and the Jewish aspects of Christianity. As someone who is not a Catholic (I come from an Orthodox Jewish background, but am non practicing) this is something I find fascinating. It also dealt with the understanding of Priesthood and the nature of the religious life.

Many times I had 'flashbacks' to my childhood as such things as the lighting of candles, the prayers said, the use of wine, the blessings, all triggered deep memories from long ago. This was an intensely emotional experience.

Most significant of all for me was the understanding the course gave me of the nature of forgiveness. At last, after very many years, I could come to terms with and let go of deep and painful emotions. I grasped the simple but tremendously powerful concept that we are all 'broken'! Close relatives, who had caused me pain were, as Sr Teresa Brittain put it to me, 'acting with good intentions and doing their best'. That unlocked the pain and let it go!

Please do check out the link below. It is from the film 'Good Will Hunting' and it is the 'It's not your fault' scene. In it Robin Williams. As the psychotherapist helping Matt Damon, gets Matt to see the real and full meaning of a very simple phrase that has the same effect that I felt. It is a tremendous scene: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZQht2yOX9Js

As a result of what happened to me at Hyning I have offered my apologies to a number of people that I may have offended, or quarreled with needlessly and asked for their forgiveness. I have also changed my attitude to those for whom I had contempt, or even loathing. I hate what they do but don't hate them. I have also stopped relishing schadenfreude, the misfortunes of others.

The church today is weathering a terrible storm. This experience teaches me that it has treasures beyond measure in the clergy and people that make it up. I am so thankful that it exists and has given me so much.

Roger Markman 

Retired teacher and activist in community relations work especially interfaith dialogue. Old friend of Our Lady of Sion.

Roger Markman