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Explore Quiet Spaces january - April 2018:

About Quiet Spaces

Taking you into quiet spaces to meet with God...

Published three times a year, each issue of Quiet Spaces provides four months' worth of inspiration for your quiet time, presented in fortnightly sections. This material can be used in daily portions throughout the week or all in one sitting as a 'quiet day', perhaps at the weekend. Within each section there are twelve elements comprising reflections inspired by different traditions, creative activities, liturgy, Bible reading and ideas for meditation. Also included is a chapter taken from As a Child by Phil Steer, which explores Jesus' words about becoming like little children and what this means for our faith journey.

The Editor writes

Welcome to this issue of Quiet Spaces!

This issue will take you through Lent and Easter and into celebrating the resurrection of Christ. Lent is often taken as a time for learning and for exercising discipline, so we are offering a focus on different ways of praying and inviting you to spend time trying them and learning more about praying in these ways. You will find that some come more readily to you than others - that's because we are all different and have different preferences and strengths. It does not mean that any one way is superior to any other way.

Similarly, how we approach these sections will vary. Some of you may want to keep with one section and follow it through, learning through the repeated practice and experience. Others of you may prefer to mix and match as you travel through Lent, taking forms of prayer that may challenge alongside those you know will feed and encourage. Again, either is fine, as long as you use Quiet Spaces to help you spend time with God and hear his voice. Some may be tempted to skip sections they anticipate as hard or 'not for me'. I would encourage you to try to avoid this. Growth often comes when there is challenge and it can be refreshing, though hard work, to explore new ways of praying.

Do enjoy lingering over those prayer forms that bring you to God, and refresh your skills in those you may have neglected and where you have become rusty. And remember, the ultimate aim is to encounter God and spend time in his presence, not to get to the end of the book!

So, prepare to be challenged, to experience the new and be comforted by the familiar. God knows you and will honour your commitment and openness, and he remains always the God of surprises.

Sally Smith


In this issue:

Letting go of anxiety
Claire Musters
1-14 January

The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe
Sue McCoulough
15-28 January

Joy MacCormick
29 January-11 February

Being with God through creativity
Jean Sims
12-25 February

Using nature in prayer
Liz Hoare
26 February-11 March

Praying with objects
Lisa Cherrett
12-25 March

Imagining prayer
Sally Smith
26 March-8 April

Time of resurrection
Janet Lunt
9-22 April

Choose for yourselves this day…
Sally Welch
23-29 April

As a Child: Pray
Phil Steer

Thought about going on retreat?
Alison MacTier


About the contributors in this issue

Claire Musters is a freelance writer and editor, mother of two, pastor's wife and school governor. Claire's desire is to help others draw closer to God through her writing, which focuses on marriage, parenting, worship and issues facing womentoday. To find out more, visit and @CMusters on Twitter.

Sue McCoulough worked for a number of years at the BBC. She was then Prayer Coordinator at the aid agency Tearfund, writing prayer materials and liaising with supporters. A reader at her church since 2000, she enjoys creative writing as well as organising and leading occasional retreats and Quiet Days.

Joy MacCormick, poet and New Zealand Anglican priest, has special concern forthose who struggle to reconcile their experience of Holy Mystery with traditional church doctrine and teaching. Now retired from parish ministry, she continues to offer spiritual direction and supervision and to write. She is author of Moments of Grace (BRF, 2013).

Jean Sims offers spiritual accompaniment and enjoys leading Quiet Days, providing prayer spaces and guiding retreats. She belongs to the prayer and spirituality group in her diocese and helps to lead courses on prayer and in the training of spiritual directors for the Diocese of Southwell and Nottingham.

Liz Hoare is tutor in spiritual formation at Wycliffe Hall in Oxford. She teaches discipleship and prayer and has a special interest in spiritual direction. She is married to Toddy, a sculptor, and they have a son. Liz enjoys baking, the English countryside and looking after her chickens.

Lisa Cherrett is Production Editor at Bible Society, having worked as an editor at BRF for 19 years. She sings in a choir, writes haiku poetry when the inspiration strikes and enjoys making her own perfume. She blogs at

Sally Smith enjoys creating spaces that enable encounters with God through leading Quiet Days and creating prayer corners and stations. She has led prayer groups in her local church, works as a spiritual director and writes and produces educational materials.

Janet Lunt is a musician by trade, arranging and typesetting music for publication. She runs St Peter's Hospice Community Choir in Bristol, and is involved in the musical aspect of worship, playing and composing. She also creates reflective prayer stations which are an integral part of her occasional Quiet Days.

Sally Welch is Vicar of Charlbury with Shorthampton and Area Dean of Chipping Norton in the Diocese of Oxford. She is a writer and lecturer on spirituality, and is particularly interested in pilgrimage and labyrinth. She has made many pilgrimages both in England and Europe.


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