Creating Sacred Spaces – Do We Really Need Churches?

My friend, Christine Sine of Mustard Seed Associates, reflects on the deep value of the outside world for inducing awareness of God all around us. This inherent inclination to see the divine in the beauty and goodness of Nature was a prominent practice of the early Celtic Church. God is revealed to us through the created world; how will you get outside today to encounter the Creator?


Our annual Celtic retreat is coming. We hold it in August on a beautiful parcel of undeveloped land on Camano Island north of Seattle. There are no buildings. Our sanctuary is a cathedral of trees – cedar and maple and alder that rise above is in a breathtaking green canopy. I particularly love to sit in the early mornings before anyone else is awake, drinking in the beauty of God’s awe inspiring creation. This is a sacred space for me, what is often called a thin space where the veil between heaven and earth seems to be translucent and the glory of God shines through in a special way.

Special places where we feel almost physically embraced by the love of God are important places of prayer for all of us. Be they a comfortable old armchair we return to day by day, a special place to walk or a…

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5 thoughts on “Creating Sacred Spaces – Do We Really Need Churches?

  1. Being new to this blogging lark, I meant to add a comment here but it was added to the post on Godspace. But I hope it is something you may find agreement with.

    • Andy-saw your comment on Godspace and absolutely agree that the natural world is absolutely something that can theoretically be a meeting ground for Christian/pagan and even political spectrums as well. We MUST see beyond our backdoors to the greater backyard!

      • I agree. We can become insular, supporting and interacting with our own particular group and church members, in comfort, or we can see beyond this and reach out to other groups and religions we may regard as ‘other”, in acknowledgement of our shared humanity, and shared responsibility in God and His creation.
        It has to be the latter.

    • Lacey-you would LOVE Christine! Follow her and her work for sure. The great restorative peace and grace we receive in the many-steepled sanctuary of the out-of-doors cannot be ignored. I find such comfort and affirmation in the Celtic tradition that sees God in everything and views Nature as revelatory, and in the ancient art of pilgrimage, which requires you to GO! Get out! Move beyond your homeland comforts to see and hear from the Divine in fresh new ways. Blessings on you today as you engage your sacred morning place with a fresh perspective!

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