Today, the Chaplaincy Team had the joy of visiting the base of the RC Chaplaincy – St Albert the Great, run by the Dominican Order. In the garden, a stunning new Chapel has been built to accommodate a lively worshipping community of locals and students.
We often underestimate the way in which our physical surroundings influence the way in which we worship and the impact they have on our spirits – I have experienced this effect in more than one congregation! This space is a light, beautifully designed and crafted space that connects well with the creation around it.
One of the things that struck me about it was the quality of the stone, and in particular, the markings on the stone caused by the action of the masons. I felt that I was looking at the extension of a metaphor that occurs in the New Testament, where the members of the church are spoken of as ‘living stones.’ Each of us has our own place in the construction of this holy temple that is a place of worship to God. But in order for us to fit into it, the hand of the mason has had to shape us with a variety of tools. Each of us bears in our lives the marks of the one who has built us into this temple of living stones. We bear in our body the marks of Jesus, just as Paul did, but probably in very different ways. We will carry these marks upon our lives as long as we are part of the temple.