Beautiful clear skies, warm temperatures and the silhouette of the new moon
greeted the more than one hundred individuals, families and children who gathered
at the Carol Shields Memorial Labyrinth in King’s Park on the afternoon
of Sunday May 24, 2009. The occasion was “Exploring Sacred Space - the
Labyrinth Experience,” a multi-faith celebration and walk of Winnipeg’s
largest outdoor labyrinth, which had marked its official opening just two weeks
earlier. The event was organized by LIGHT and the Manitoba Labyrinth Network
to provide the opportunity for people from diverse cultural backgrounds, religions
and spiritual beliefs to walk the labyrinth together.
Anne Nesbitt, Executive Director of the Manitoba Labyrinth Network, opened the proceedings with a brief history and overview of the Carol Shields Memorial Labyrinth before leading a demonstration of Tai Chi movements in the labyrinth itself. This was followed by opening prayers by Anglican Church minister Kolleen Karlowsky, a reflection by Karen Toole, Provincial Spiritual Care Coordinator (Manitoba Health and Healthy Living) and a Hindu meditation led by Tara Maniar.
A guided procession around the labyrinth was accompanied by the beautiful voice of Cantor Len Udow who offered a traveler’s prayer from the Jewish tradition. This ushered in the labyrinth walk as people quietly entered the labyrinth and slowly walked the winding paths to the center. Here blessings and song were offered as a tribute to the universal nature of sacred space and the shared spiritual impulse of all human beings. Finally, a labyrinth healing was presented by members of the Manitoba Therapeutic Touch Network and Creative Retirement. During the healing, angelic sounds rang out from the crystal bowls of the Keepers of the Sanctuary, washing the labyrinth in an ocean of healing energy and spirit.
Those who attended the event agreed that the day had been uplifting, peaceful, healing and created a sense of sharing, celebration and community. Hopefully the multi-faith labyrinth walk at the Carol Shields Memorial Labyrinth will become an annual celebration of the human spiritual journey.
Tai Chi and the Labyrinth
Keepers of the Sanctuary