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Godly Play at Greenbelt in the UK

Greenbelt is a Christian community in the United Kingdom committed to arts, faith, and culture. As they say on their website: Greenbelt is ‘engaged with culture, inspired by the arts, sustained by faith and aspires to be an open generous community re-imagining the Christian narrative for the present moment’. This mission is primarily lived out each year on the August Bank Holiday weekend when they host a festival that includes a programme of music, visual and performing arts, spirituality, comedy, talks, and discussion. How fitting then that Godly Play United Kingdom chose to be an integral part of this rich experience by being present at the Greenbelt festival.

IMG_0695Each morning there were full Godly Play sessions indoors, throughout the day pop-up sessions were held outdoors, and each evening Deep Talk sessions were held. Over twenty volunteers ran these sessions under the able leadership of Jeremy and Louise Clines and Kathryn Lord. I was privileged to be present for a day and to witness many children and adults experiencing Godly Play for the first time. This was an inspired project that combined ministry and promotion. Those who took part in the sessions were able to experience the wonder of Godly Play, and they are sure to go home and share the good news in ways that will lead to the growth of Godly Play in the UK.

IMG_0691Through this project, Godly Play UK has reminded us all of the importance of seeking out opportunities to promote this gift that is Godly Play. One of the commendable things about Godly Play is how it has grown based on reputation, results, and relationships as opposed to a coordinated and manufactured marketing plan. Nonetheless, to the extent we believe that Godly Play is good news for the people of the world, then to that extent we may need to be more proactive and intentional in seeking out opportunities to share this good news. Events like Greenbelt take place all over the world all of the time, and I encourage national and regional circles of Godly Play to imagine the ways in which they can be present at these events. Thank you Godly Play UK for your example.

Andrew Sheldon
Godly Play Advocate for International Development

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