Home – A Sanctuary

“Sometimes I need
only to stand
wherever I am
to be blessed.”

Mary Oliver

Saturday 19 March

In the garden, balcony, or at the window

This is the place of wonder, where we recognise we are part of creation; where space is made for plants, birds and animals. The place where we see God’s creation in all its glory.

Contemplating creation, Jesus invites us to consider the lilies, to marvel at the birds of the air and the fish of the sea each of which is clothed by God our Creator. As you gaze outwards at the world God calls good, be aware of life all around you. Be aware of God’s cycle of renewal bringing buds in spring, flowers in summer, falling leaves in autumn and silent rest in darkest winter. Be reconciled with nature and commit yourself to caring for our common home.

Listen — are you breathing just a little, and calling it a life?”

Mary Oliver

Friday 18 March

In your work space

In the place where you work or knit or sew; at the table where you pay bills or write letters, be aware of the risks you take, the mistakes you make, the things that don’t always turn out the way they were supposed to.

Remember how Jesus spent time in his father’s carpentry workshop, learning his craft by trial and error under the loving and supportive eye of Joseph.

Ask God’s blessing on the work of your hands, your imagination, your mind. Ask God to give you patience in accepting your limitations.

“When it’s over, I want to say:
all my life
I was a bride married to amazement.
I was the bridegroom, taking the world into my arms.
When it is over, I don’t want to wonder
if I have made of my life something particular, and real.
I don’t want to find myself sighing and frightened,
or full of argument.
I don’t want to end up simply having visited this world.”

Mary Oliver

Thursday 17 March

In the living room

The living room houses everything. Sometimes bubbling with life, chatter, fun; sometimes silent and at peace. When Judas was planning to betray him, Jesus organised a meal, invited Judas, broke bread with him and included him. Jesus responded to betrayal with faithful love.

As you pray in your living room, give thanks for all who have sat with you, laughed with you, cried with you. Give thanks for all who have forgiven you, included you and stuck by you when the going got tough. And pray for healing of hurts, freedom from violence and a renewed sense of belonging.

“You can have the other words – chance, luck, coincidence, serendipity.
I’ll take grace. I don’t know what it is exactly, but I’ll take it.”

Mary Oliver

Wednesday 16 March

In the bedroom

The bedroom is the place of intimacy, of safety, of sleep. A place of deep sleep and of restless nights. A place of closeness and of loneliness. A place where the past can haunt us and the future frighten us. Jesus sleeps only once in the gospels and that is during a fierce storm. Woken up by his friends, he calms the storm and asks “Why are you afraid? Have you no faith?

We pray that during our own personal storms and darkest nights we will know the promise of Christ ‘I will not leave you orphans’.

“Tell me,
what is it you plan to do
with your one
wild and precious life?”

Mary Oliver

Tuesday 15 March

In the bathroom

The bathroom is the place where we are most reminded of our bodiliness, our fragility and our vulnerability. Look in the mirror not with your own critical eyes but with the eyes of Christ who sees not your wrinkles but your beauty. ‘You are my beloved’ he says and who are we to tell him he’s wrong?

In your prayer remember how Jesus stopped down – like a servant – to wash the feet of his disciples. ‘If I, your Lord and Master have washed your feet, you also should wash one another’s feet.’ (John 13.14)

May we dedicate each day to be of service for at least one person and show special care where we encounter someone in pain.

“Love yourself.
Then forget it.
Then, love the world.”

Mary Oliver

Monday 14 March

In the kitchen

Pray in your kitchen, the place where food is prepared, kettles boiled, lists written and homework done.

Be aware in your kitchen just how much our lives rely on others: on farmers, on bakers, on vegetable growers, on haulage vehicles and food outlets. Notice just how interdependent we actually are.

Give thanks for those with whom you have shared your table over the years, the people who have broken bread with you and with whom you have shared joys and sorrows.

Pray too for the Community Orchard, the Community Garden and the Eats Community Hub growing food to feed those in need in Rosyth. And, as you dream up your next meal, “Keep some room in your heart for the unimaginable.”

Mary Oliver

Sunday 13 March
The Second Sunday of Lent

At the door

‘Behold, I stand at the door and knock.
If any hear my voice and open the door,
I will come in and eat with them, and them with me.’
(Revelation 3.20)

Pray at your door – the space between outside and inside. A place of welcome, where we wait for those we love. The place where friends announce their presence; where newspapers and mail is delivered.
Pray for all who come to your door: the welcome and the uninvited.
Pray for the homeless, the migrant and refugee who cannot shut out the world
Pray for an hospitable heart to see the face of Christ in all.

“Hello, sun in my face. Hello you who made the morning and spread it over the fields … Watch, now, how I start the day in happiness, in kindness.”

Mary Oliver


This sequence of daily readings or prayers for the second week of Lent was compiled by Rev Dr Michael Paterson using materials written by him and drawn from a variety of sources. You can download a printable version of the week’s sequence at this link.

Coming up …
  • 26 May 2022 6:30 pm Sung Eucharist
  • 29 May 2022 9:30 am Sung Eucharist
  • 29 May 2022 11:00 am Morning Worship
  • 5 June 2022 9:30 am Sung Eucharist

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