Dear Middleway Urban Monastery friends,
A pattern of prayer. That has been the norm for Middleway online since the beginning and will continue when we settle into a physical space as well. In fact, every day the monastery is open will begin with prayer, pause for prayer at noon, and end with prayer before closing. We are committed to creating a rich environment of holy presence this way -- a sacred space.
Brief but specific prayer services have been written for Middleway, and we hope you will attend as often as you can. As they are offered in person, they will also be available online.
In the meantime, here's the Middleway Urban Monastery Prayer you can join us in praying from wherever you are:
God of all strength and all weakness, God of all dark and all light, God of all certainty and all doubt, we vow anew this day to follow you ... wherever it may lead. Rather than chase after one extreme or the another, we profess that you reside in the center of all things. Help us to follow the via media, the middle way, honoring that which is good and holy and seeking to forgive and heal that which longs to be made new. Help us to place all our trust in your never-failing love. Amen.
"An Altar in the World" set for September book study
Hurry and get the next book for our September weekly gatherings -- "An Altar in the World: A Geography of Faith" by Barbara Brown Taylor. Taylor shares how she learned to find God beyond the church walls by embracing the sacred as a natural part of everyday life. We'll start discussing that book on Sept. 2. Read the first three chapters.
The book club meets everyThursday and is open to all. Here's how to join:
Meeting ID: 862 8991 8385 Passcode: 164675
or call in 1 346 248 7799
Upcoming books are:
October - "Sitting at the Feet of Rabbi Jesus" by Ann Spangler and Lois Tverberg
November - "Amazing Grace: A Vocabulary of Faith" by Kathleen Norris
December - No meetings
January 2022 - "The Gifts of Imperfection: Let Go of Who You Think You're Supposed to Be and Embrace Who You Are" by Brene Brown
Volunteer at Middleway through a Circle of Stewards
Come be a part of the Middleway community! We need volunteers who have talents in administration, reception, hospitality, plants/greenery, library, arts, technology/information, worship, cleaning, and growth/sustainability. Each of these areas will be called Circles of Stewards. And no worries if you don't live near. There are ways to be part of our circles whether you live nearby or far away.
Beause you are already a member by subscribing to this newsletter, you will soon receive an invitation to become a volunteer in one or more of those areas. If you want to go ahead and get on board, you can sign up at https://timecounts.org/middlewaymonastery. Simply fill in the form and make your choices. Then when opportunities become available in the Circle(s) of your choice, you will be notified and can decide if you are able to participate at particular times.
We consider these opportunities more than volunteering. Our volunteers are part of the Middleway community. Being at Middleway will be less of the typical "doing" associated with most volunteer activities and more of the "being," that is, being present to welcome visitors and enjoy the surroundings yourself! With this in mind, our volunteers are in community with the Middleway Urban Monastery's Rule of Life:
Conversion of Life “Conversatio”: Living our life as if it were a conversation with God, in a commitment to personal spiritual disciplines.
Humility: Living our life in perspective, in a commitment to assess and honor one’s own gifts and those of others.
Hospitality: Living our life in service of others, in a commitment to welcome guests in love and a spirit of prayer.
Prayer: Practicing a spiritual discipline that includes daily prayer.
Ecumenism: Honoring all expressions of Christian faith and respecting in Jesus’ name all persons of other religions and faiths.
How to Visit Middleway Urban Monastery
Ready to dig a little deeper spiritually? We're here for you. Very soon, we will have our physical space in Bryan, Texas ready for in-person visits. And even after we open that space, we will continue with our virtual offerings.
As we prepare to open our doors at the physical location, we also now are opening membership on our Facebook group page. Just go there and join so you can receive notices and posts about events as well comment on our offerings.
Likewise, you can come to our website and explore the offerings, including links to our Twitter, Instagram, and YouTube accounts, if you like those formats and want to follow.
Pass the word. Ask your frieds to subscribe to this newsletter, https://www.middlewayurbanmonastery.org/contact and entering their email address at the Subscribe button on the lower right, and join our Facebook group.