Seasons of Love: A retreat for gay and bisexual men

As I indicated in this blog a few weeks ago, I’m going to be co-leading a retreat for gay and bisexual men in March.

Anyone who wants to know more can find details on the retreat website at

Pilgrimage/Retreating/Spirituality stuff seems very much to be on the rise and this is just one of the things that I’m planning to do in this area over the next period of time. In my head, I’m also planning a city-based pilgrimage but details of that will have to wait for a bit.

Anyone with any questions about this retreat, do get in touch. This one happens to be for men only – again, I suspect that I’ll find myself running a mixed retreat for LGBT folk sometime too.

Bookings are now open for this one and places are limited.

Back from Retreat (all perky and ready to go)

Just back from a week on retreat in a Jesuit house in sunny Spain.

It is a while since I’ve made a retreat and four years since I went to this particular place. Like before, I’ve come back all perky and ready to go.

I realise as I look back over the last few weeks that much of the blogging has been quite technical church synod stuff. Normal service begins again here.

It has been interesting reflecting on my life here at St Mary’s recently. I didn’t particularly go on retreat to do this but inevitably, one thinks about where one is coming from and in conversation with other retreatants, you do find yourself thinking a lot about the life you have as you hear of the lives of others.

This retreat wasn’t a silent one – it consisted of mostly imaginative Ignation exercises and group sharing in the morning, siesta/sun/snooze in the afternoon heat and then a Jesuit examine style of prayer in the evening before mass. Quieter in the mornings. Chatter later in the day. It was just what I needed and I’m very grateful to those who make this kind of thing happen. The theme, by the way, was Mentoring.

No doubt I’ll have lots of emails and messages to deal with when I get back into the office this afternoon.

I’ve just checked the cathedral website to realise that this Sunday is one of those bumper ones which make life around here so wonderful. It is the last blast of the West End Festival this week and so we’ve a special Choral Service in the morning (Darke in E) and then the extraordinary spectacle of an Orchestral Choral Evensong in the evening.

Yes, you heard that right – Orchestral Choral Evensong. A very big choir and an orchestra and music that you know and love:

Orchestral Choral Evensong
sung by the Cathedral Choir and St Mary’s Festival Chorus,
accompanied by St Mary’s Festival Orchestra

Introit: I was glad – Parry
Responses: Rose
Psalm: The Lord is my shepherd – Howard Goodall
Canticles: Stanford in A
Anthem: Greater Love – Ireland