Universal Heart Newsletter: Spring Retreat begins 25 September

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Dear Universal Heart Networkers

Spiritual service, Sydney * Meditation CDs plus YouTube Talks * Retreat talks * Spring Retreat, Mana, 3 or 6 days

This coming Sunday, 15 June 2014, at 3pm, we will celebrate EIGHT years of genuinely inclusive spiritual services at Pitt (264) Street Uniting Church in Sydney. Sustaining and growing our community really is quite an achievement and we are feeling truly delighted about it, while also looking forward to a very promising future.

We began in 2006, a year after my 2005 ordination in New York. I had already been writing and teaching at that point from an interfaith, inclusive perspective for many years, but it was a great excitement to begin to offer services on a regular basis in such a beautiful, central church with a strong history of its own universal welcome. From the beginning Kim Cunio has been at my side offering not just his rare depth of musical knowledge and exquisite playing, but also a deep commitment and understanding of what a universal spirituality means. Those of you who have heard Kim play and sing, along with his wife and exceptional musician, Heather Lee, will know how much this has added to the depth and delight of what our services bring. Please do join us this Sunday if Sydney is anywhere on your radar (links below if it’s not!). Here is a useful link from my website about the service which you may want to send on to others… Can you take a moment to consider this? We never know when a personal invitation will make all the difference for someone. Kim and Heather will be offering quite exceptional music this Sunday and our theme is, as always, practical and inspirational.

You may not yet know that Kim and I have also made two CDs together (Peaceful Mind and Heavenly). Heather sings on both. On Heavenly she sings what was Gandhi’s favourite hymn: Lead Kindly Light. You can get details of both albums from our Universal Heart Music LINK which lets you purchase tracks from Heavenly and also takes you to Blue, where you can purchase the actual CDs. (Or go direct to Blue using the highlighted link here.)

You can also catch up with short spiritual talks from the services via the InterfaithinSydney  You Tube channel. This extends our sense of community way beyond Sydney – exactly as it should be. The most recent talk is on “Radical Simplicity”: getting to the heart of what can best steady and support us in everyday life.

You may also enjoy the support offered in the talks from this year’s Retreat at Easter. I would love to hear your responses particularly to these talks; you can post your thoughts with great ease on my public Facebook page for others also to benefit from your reflections. And, not least, a reminder that the Spring Retreat at Mana will begin on 25 September with the option of being on retreat for 3 or 6 days. We have decided to limit the numbers for the extension so if this appeals to you, please contact Mana without delay. I have been teaching there for 14 years and cannot recommend a stay there too highly. The outer landscapes are breathtaking but what benefits participants most is the quite exceptional kindness and peace of mind always on offer. It is possible to get a shuttle from Auckland airport, and Mana can help with this. Email address is be@manaretreat.com – and there is heaps of information on their website.

My kindest wishes go to each and every one of you. And deepest hopes for peace in your lives and in our world.

Stephanie Dowrick

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