Headington Fun Day, Oxford – July 15th 2017
Parable Garden in partnership with Cornerstone Church set up a plant stall at the Headington Fun Day, Bury Knowle Park, Oxford which is an outreach event run by different churches. People of all ages, representing different beliefs and cultures, enjoyed sowing seeds, planting young bedding plants which they took home and helping to make a miniature parable garden.
Quiet Morning at Beckley, Oxfordshire September 2017 ‘A celebration of apples’
An over fifty-fives’ group from Madgalen Road Church, Oxford enjoyed a Parable Garden Quiet
Morning on the theme of ‘a celebration of apples’. Starting with a short talk on the history, health benefits and the amazing diversity of apples, people were astonished to find out that every apple seed contains genetic instructions for a completely unique apple tree!
Naming as many varieties as they could, apple tasting and sharing stories of apple recipes they remembered from childhood was followed by a short reflection on the diversity in God’s creation, our uniqueness and the great value that God places on each of us. ‘Keep me as the apple of Your eye; Hide me under the shadow of your wings” (Psalm 17:8).
Churchyards and Spirituality workshop October 2017 at St Mary’s Church Charlbury, Oxfordshire
The aim of the workshop was to bring people together who had an interest in the spiritual value of churchyards and to discuss how the church can enhance the experience of those who visit them.
Speakers included: Rev Dr Sally Welch who covered topics such as theology of the outdoors, Pilgrim Paths resources; Rev Glyn Evans introduced God’s Acre – the work of Rev Mark Betson on the environmental and spiritual significance of churchyards; Rev Jean Andrews spoke about her quiet garden at Charlbury Baptist Church. Our Parable Garden session included trialling our autumn set of ‘Seasonal Treasure Postcards’ with the delegates, which were well received and many suggestions were offered as to how they could be used. We are planning to publish these in 2018 for use in different pastoral settings.
Ilminster Parable Garden
In April 2017, a dedicated group from the local parish church started digging and planting up some beds on a nearby plot of land and have been rewarded with a harvest of vegetables this autumn, some of which was shared at the Food Share programme in the town, an outreach to those in need.
One of the parishioners writes: ‘Our ‘parable garden’ at Ilminster has been a treasure…a true refuge of joy and peace for many this year. The toil in preparation of the soil, the planting of seed and seedlings by families and friends resulted in full flourishing fruits by summer...’ Read more…