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A walk on the Wild Side

by Michael Ford last modified 03 Jul, 2019 03:10 PM

For those who lead us, sustaining their own wellbring is crucial as they minister to us, and recently a walk on the wild side of Dartmoor gave 9 ministers the time to do just that.

The group first gathered in Princetown: they had been told to equip themselves for all weathers and were certainly wondering what was in store for the next few days.

The 'Walking for Wellbeing' part of the Continuing Ministerial Development programme for our Diocese had been organised by the Revd Alan Ryan, who had arranged for local walk leader Nigel Phillips to guide the group across Dartmoor and tell us the tales and legends that were associated with the places where they walked.

Each morning, the group met together and had a briefing for the day.

Then Revd Alan began by giving them something to think about as they walked. As one of the group commented:

"We started the week with Jeremiah 6 verse 16 and Psalm 121. Alan encouraged us to leave our burdens at the gate to the moor and step out in faith!

"On day 1 we walked through the industrial wasteland of Dartmoor, taking in some Bronze Age sites along the way.

"Day 2 we ventured into old Dartmoor and went high for the views. We experienced most weathers but that day it cleared to blue sky and sunshine as we went higher.

"Day 3 was about rivers and river crossings – a challenging experience! We walked, talked, shared and begun each day in prayer together – there was a real sense of family and fun and we all returned to Dorset and Wiltshire refreshed (if a little tired)."

‘Dartmoor is such a spiritual place and it was lovely to be able to take the time to just ‘be’ in God’s presence."

The Revd Canon Jane Charman, our Director of Ministry commented:

"Our diocesan CMD programme is not just about gathering knowledge and honing skills, as important as these elements are, but about sustaining our wellbeing for ministry through healthy living, mindfulness, fellowship and fun."

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