Praying at the Labyrinth & Walking the Labyrinth
Praying at the Labyrinth
- The Labyrinth is a spiritual tool serving as a walk-centering activity for the human heart, mind and soul. Plan at least 20-30 minutes, of longer if desired.
- Begin to prepare yourself as you walk toward the Labyrinth. Walk in calm silence, focusing on your intention for walking and praying the Labyrinth.
- A Labyrinth has a single, purposeful path that winds from th edge into the center. The same path leads back out to the edges again. Thus, it resembles the indirect path of our lives, which leads us sometimes into the center of the human condition, sometimes into the focal point of enlightenment or understanding.
Walking the Labyrinth
- Pause at the threshold of the Labyrinth.
- Allow about one minute between people as you enter the Labyrinth.
- Let go of the details of your life as you step into the path of the Labyrinth and move toward the center.
- Become aware of opening your heart and quieting your mind, preparing to listen for God.
- Let your body assume the pace it wants. As you walk, breathe naturally; become aware of your breathing.
- If other people are also walking, those going in will meet those coming out. You may “pass” people going in or coming out, or let them step around you in prayerful silence. Become aware of the path itself, because it is your path – a mirror for where you are in life.
- Some people do not really get a feel for the labyrinth experience until they have walked it at least three times.
- The center is a place and a time for illumination, meditation and prayer. Stay in the center as long as you like. Allow yourself to receive guidance and insights. “Be still and know that I am God.” Ps. 46
- The process of retracing one’s steps to exit provides an opportunity to integrate your insights into your daily life.
- There can be a sense of union, clarity, strengthening, and healing in your relationship with God, self and others … or just a sense of peace or joy.
- Prayers and mantras may be helpfu before, during or following your walk.
- Come Holy Spirit, Come
- Teach me your paths, Oh Lord
- Show me your path
- Lord, hear my prayer
- When I call, please answer me
- Prayer of Thomas Merton:
- “My Lord God, I have no idea where I am going. I do not see the road ahead of me. I cannot know for certain where it will end. Nor do I really know myself; and the fact that I think I am following your will does not mean that I am actually doing so. But I believe that the desire to please you does in fact please you. And I hope I have the desire in all that I am doing. I hope that I will never do anything apart from that desire. And I know that if I do this, you will lead me by the right road, though I may know nothing about it. Therefore, will I trust always though I may seem to be lost and in the shadow of death. I will not fear, for you are ever with me, and you will never leave me to face my perils alone.” (Thoughts in Solitude, 1954)
- Why Walk the Labyrinth?
- Walking into a Labyrinth is a symbol of entering into something, learning what there is to learn, and then moving on with life.
- A Labyrinth walk can represent a life journey, a pilgrimage to a sacred place, or a prayer that brings us to God.
- It can be a way of intentionally and reflectively facing a problem or issue.
- Sometimes you may walk with Labyrinth looking for an answer.
- You may simply walk to be open to what comes.
- A Labyrinth walk is a spiritual and personal journey, and therefore it is a sacred path.
Note: Parking to use the Labyrinth is available on Lake Shore Road or in the church parking lot accessible off Red Arrow Highway. Please do not drive into the yard. When parking in the parking lot, walk around either side of the church to reach the Labyrinth. Thank you!
The Path to Building a Labyrinth
In 2003, Rev. Paula Durren, our former Priest, presented a seminar to several ladies of the church, Marylin Wagner, Laverne Hughes and Marianne Williams. Mtr. Paula talked about Labyrinths being a gift to the community – a place of sanctuary and peace and gathering for a community. A church yard is the perfect place for a labyrinth. Mtr. Paula continued to pursue using our large lawn for a labyrinth and meditation garden.
After the passing of Kristie Cromheecke Palo, Barbara and Paul Cromheecke’s daughter, Barbara and Paul made a donation to the labyrinth in honor of their daughter. Kent Newberry, a long-time member, also donated to the labyrinth in honor of Gail, his wife, after her death and to the memory of Ronald (Ronnie) Reidhauser, another long-time church member. Other donations continued to be received for the labyrinth. Eventually a columbarium and memorial garden will be added too.
In 2017, a committee was formed, and work began on a design with Mike Mareno of Andrews University Architecture Department. Mike and his wife volunteered their time to help the committee design a landscape plan incorporating the labyrinth, a columbarium and gardens. The committee of Paul Cromheecke, Linda Anderson, Bob Tibbles, Rev. Richard and Mary Emrich, David Dietrich and Mary Jo Thies-Dietrich, presented the finished design to the vestry, receiving approval to move forward with the design. The design is a replica of the Chartre Cathedral Labyrinth in France.
In January 2019, the committee met in the Church yard and mapped out the size and location for the labyrinth. In 2020, Rev. Darlene Kuhn answered our call to be Rector and was enthusiastic to start our labyrinth and garden plans. Three landscape companies were interviewed and Green Thumb of Three Oaks, Michigan, was selected.
In Fall 2020, the process to build the labyrinth base and main structure began.
In Spring 2021, the final steps were completed, and Mediator had a labyrinth. On September 19, 2021, we dedicated the labyrinth with a special service led by Mtr. Darlene and Rev. Alan James, Interim Canon Missioner – Western Diocese of Michigan.
With the assistance and help from Joanne Sims, a member, and Master Gardener, we continue with the plans for the columbarium and the addition of more landscaping to continue beautification of the surrounding area.
Come Visit Us!
We are part of a unique Lake Michigan community just a short drive from New Buffalo, MI on Red Arrow Highway. We are also conveniently close to another lakeshore community, Saint Joseph.