Welcome

2021 begins in the same vein as 2020 ended, as we all face the challenges of the continuing pandemic. Whilst increasing vaccinations offer optimism and hope, we are still restricted to running our sessions virtually on Zoom. As soon as conditions allow we will return to physical gatherings, because we know that direct human contact is an essential nourishment for the soul. There is something about being in the presence of others that allows communication far beyond words.  And yet virtual sessions have their benefits too. We have been blessed with contributions by speakers from far flung corners of the world, and been joined by friends who could not have traveled to London even before Covid restrictions.

Perhaps this helps us recognise that in many ways the world is a smaller, more inter-connected place than we ever realised.  Technology now means that we can speak and see people anywhere in the world, reducing the need and cost of travel.  But the same interconnectivity has left us all vulnerable to an animal virus that once existed benignly in a far-away forest.  However we choose to identify ourselves, whether by gender, religion, ethnicity or nationality, we are faced with the stark reality that we are global neighbours, and none of us can feel safe till we are ALL safe.  Something to remember when you next see the commandment – ‘love thy neighbour as thyself.’

We have adapted our programme to make sessions available by Zoom videoconference for the duration of COVID 19 restrictions.

This will allow you to join by either:

  • Using a laptop, tablet or smartphone with good internet. You will be able to see and hear the speaker and interact with the other people in the session.

Or

  • Using a normal phone, you will be able to hear the speaker and interact with the other people in the session.

Just use the website links shown in the programme for each event. We are asking you to pre-register, which simply means signing up with your name and email address, to keep the sessions more secure. After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the meeting.  We have reduced the length of the sessions and will aim two short breaks, so you won’t be sitting in front of a screen for more than about 45 minutes at a time.

Please do join us if you can, as a spiritual community is more important than ever right now.

Jonathan Males on behalf of the Programme Committee

3 February 2021

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