Community Gossip

Gossip? In Old English, a “godsibb” was a godmother or godfather, from “god” plus “sib,” meaning “relative” (related to our modern “sibling”). It was later used to refer to companions in childbirth – people from the community who were there in difficult and celebratory times.

Here you'll find a list of things we've been doing/thinking/reading.

Photo of Ari holding the star

"What good is it to me If Mary gave birth To the Son of God, And I do not also give birth to him In my time and culture?" Meister Eckhart (1260-1327)

Photo of our meet up on All Saints Day in Florence Park

This month's theme is How did we get here? and we'll be looking at the history of those of us following "The Way" (as early Christians were called).

This month Abbie and Tom are inviting us to consider abundance.

Soup n Soul

We shared Soup n Soul lunch @ Kentish's in Cowley on 2nd. This was a shared lunch with simple spiritual practices, breaking bread, giving thanks and sharing concerns.

photo of 1 Corinthians 13 verses written on rainbow ribbons

September's meetings were organised by the Robineaus and the theme was Amazing Saints.

People from mayBe say: Refugees Welcome!

We met for our little sunday on 6 Sep in South Park for a simple worship, and improvisation around a saint who could not sing until blessed by an angel!

Photo of boy climbing tree

As a community-organised church with lots of families, organising gets tough over the summer and many people are away, so we usually take a break in August.

But join us in July for some simple gatherings as follows:

  • Thursday 9 July, 8pm, come for a simple community meal at the Lotts', in Cowley.
  • Sunday 12 July, 10:30 South Park for a wee worship, followed by picnic.
  • Weds 22 July, 8pm, Guardians meet, including starting off Dave in post as our new Sacristan.
  • Thurs 30 July, Pints n Prattle at the Marsh Harrier pub, from 9pm.
photo of our kite workshop

Freedom and hope: Flying kites to celebrate Palestinian culture

mayBe community contributed to the Palestine Unlocked festival; a celebration of Palestinian culture. We ran a family kite making workshop at the Oxford Story Museum. Palestinian children hold the world record for the number of kites flown at the same time (12,350!); kites are symbols of freedom, hope, peace.

Photo from recent eclipse

Sunday 10 May: We joined in with the Christian Aid All Age service at St Francis Church, Hollow Way, followed by bring n share lunch.

Thurs 21 May: Community Meal at Skye n Joel's. We had an interesting discussion on how God is described and where that's led to mistaking metaphors for God ("God is light") for literal facts; - perhaps God is also found in darkness. Here's Joel's text (he says it's a work in progress):

photo of loaf we shared

On Good Friday, we met at the Lotts' at 11:30 for godly play, some creative 'stations' and homemade bread n soup. This will be our main Easter meet up because so many of us are away in the holls, so we celebrated the full Easter story, not just the events of Good Friday.

Anjali and Asher were baptised.

Photo of Sam

We joined in Sam's 50th celebrations with a family friendly celidh.

Happy birthday, Sam!

photo of eggs!

This month's dates:

  • Sunday 15 March - South Park 10:30am
  • Thursday 26 March - Pints and Prattle 9pm, Marsh Harrier pub
  • Sunday 29 March - Big Sunday, at the Robineaus'.

We had a lovely time on the big Sunday. We all brought toppings for a baked spud lunch.

Photo of cracked pottery!

This month Tom and Abbie are organising our gatherings. We're exploring vulnerability.

The final 'February' meeting is 1st March (hey, it's nearly Feb) which will be our big Sunday. We're meeting up at the Cherwell Centre, starting with a shared lunch at 12:30.

Photo of kids wrapping up the present

Happy new year!

We began the year with a lunch gathering and conversation based around chapter 19 of Brian McLaren's We Make the Road by Walking book.

Photo of Andrea

We went to Court Hill hostel near Wantage. It was a great time to be together. We continued our hospitality theme, designing our own doormats with spray paint, and Andrea led several Godly Play sessions which captivated the normally roudy kids.

Check out the photos on flickr!

On Sunday 20th Sep 2014 maybe participated in the Oxford Diocese's "Grand Day Out". A series of events and installations organised by the Diocese in Oxford town centre. mayBe had a stall in the "market place" at Wesley Memorial Hall in the town centre. We did it pretty low maintenance. Got a big roll of white paper. Stuck it to a table and then mixed kids and a lot of crayons. This was enough to get a few conversations going about who we were. One of the great things about being in the market place was meeting other stall holders, some of whom had some really inspiring ideas.
Fri 3rd  - soup & soul - 12:30pm onwards -  @ Sam's, Chalgrove Sat 11th - little meet up - probably a park in Oxford Thurs 16th - community meal at the Lott's house, Cowley. Sun 26th - Big Sunday meet up - venue to be confirmed
photo of session

mayBe were invited to be contributers at greenbelt again. It's a great tradition of ours and a place we all feel at home. Lately we've been rocking the family-friendly worship sessions and this year we were overwhelmed with the number of people who came to our session based around Sharing a Shell.  

Sunday 28th Sep - 10:30am- gathering at lower end of South Park - then cafe!
  • Sun 8th June - Little Sunday – Southpark 10:30am
  • Wed 11th June – Pub 9pm – Marsh Harrier
  • Thurs 19th June – Community meal
  • Sun 29th June - Big Sunday - details to be confirmed
It was great for mayBe to spend time together at the annual camping adventure. This year we were at Bridge House, Shillingford where Phil and Rosemary gave us a wonderful welcome. Bridget House is a retreat centre where people can come and rest, recharge and stay in a very special spiritual environment. We arrived on the Friday night and set up our tents and camper vans in the field next to the chickens and the labyrinth. "The Belly of the Big Blue" fish tent was put up, food was shared and a late night campfire signalled the start of the mini-mayBe festival.
Little Sunday - May 11th at South Parks 10am for a short service Community Meal - May 15th at 36, Bartholomew Road, 7.30pm Camping and Long Weekend - 23rd -25th May at Bridge House, Shillingford.  Contact mayBe for more information!
photo of us greeting the non-existant sun rise

We greeted the new Easter day's arrival like disciples hearing news from Mary: taking faith that the sun/son had risen...somewhere over there! A few of us met up at Boars Hill, crept down a strictly private road (to find an east-facing view), huddled in Swifty (our campervan) while the kettle boiled and the hot cross buns toasted, then ventured out into a nearby field to watch the sun illumine the dark into a sort of lighter grey. We used some prayers about dawn from the wee worship book, told our own version of the first moments of Easter, and read a Mary Oliver poem (below).

On Friday 28th March 2014 I attended the Religious Life and Renewal Conference in Lambeth Palace. There were about 100 attendees from well established communities (hundreds of years old) and also new monastic communities such as mayBe (now 10 years old!). We met in the quite daunting halls of Lambeth Palace on the banks of the Thames. Thick red carpets, big portraits on oak panelled walls and even a door disguised as a bookcase. Fortunately the decor did not upstage the day. The content of the conference was good.

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