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Walking The Labyrinth: A Holy Week Feature

St Matthew-in-the-City
Corner of Hobson and Wellesley Streets

29 March 2012

Walking The Labyrinth: A Holy Week Feature

From Monday the 2nd of April to Thursday the 5th of April in the week leading up to Easter, St Matthew-in-the-City empties the centre of the church and places river rocks in an ancient pattern called a labyrinth. Candles are lit on the outer and inner circles and the labyrinth path that winds its way from one to the other is big enough to allow people to pass each other in comfort and accommodate many people at one time.

Click for larger image

A labyrinth is an ancient reflective and contemplative tool used by people from prehistoric and medieval times and has again become popular today. The labyrinth is a physical way to get somewhere different in your thinking and feeling without having to travel great distances. The entry and exit are at the same point and the entire labyrinth can be seen and appreciated by the walker (nothing is hidden) before taking that first step.

The job of the labyrinth is to take the walker from the rush and jumble of everyday life to a quieter place inside oneself. Therefore, the labyrinth is different for each person no matter how often walked or number of people walking within the labyrinth at any one time.

Everyone is invited to come and enjoy the peace and tranquility of the labyrinth and general space no matter what religion, culture or beliefs one holds. Meditative music from many different traditions fills the atmosphere and there are candles provided for people to light on a special table. On Monday from 6:00pm to 7:00pm St Matthew’s Ensemble will be singing Gregorian chant. Often people like to light a candle after they have walked the labyrinth, while others come to enjoy the space sitting in the seating provided and light a candle as part of that reflective time.

For those having their first experience of a labyrinth information is available at the entrance on how to walk one. People often sit, read this, and watch others before deciding whether to walk. Last year over 4 days 600+ people came throughout the time to sit quietly, light candles and /or walk the labyrinth. Often people returned to re-experience the labyrinth and the meditative atmosphere several times over the week.

The doors open at 10am in the morning and the candles provide the majority of light after dark until 9pm. Everyone is welcome to walk and enjoy the labyrinth during this week.


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