Action and Contemplation
Until a year ago I was a parish priest, and chaplain to a Church of England High School across the road from church, where incidentally Sister Valeria CSMV had once been its school chaplain too. Some years previously I had a similar experience as a part-time hospital chaplain. How do these worlds connect: prayer desk and staff room, morning office and managing significant conversations around break times (or the consultant’s round)?
In this Quiet Day, I’d like to take some inspiration from the writings of St Francis, but also recognise how the contribution from the “alternative orthodox” tradition of contemporary spirituality helps us to balance our personal journey of prayer with Jesus’ concern to be actively present in places where there is suffering, and hope is elusive.
Ian Shelton is a recently retired priest in the Birmingham Diocese, and a CSMV Associate.