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Retreat Day for Godly Play

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On Saturday 4th May the Godly Play Norfolk & Norwich Network held a retreat day for those who use Godly Play. Twelve people gathered on a gorgeous day in the beautiful location of The Barn at Rockland Rectory, complemented by wonderfully comfortable and generous hospitality from hosts Reverends Nick and Helen Garrard. 

In the morning session, the story of the woman at the well provoked lots of wondering as the group looked at the Bible text, the Godly Play story and an alternative version where the woman was not an outcast as often assumed, but a midwife running a neighbourly favour for one of her new mums. She was a widow several times over and was now living in the household of her priest brother-in-law as was the custom….so actually a highly educated pillar of society, who followed traditions and social etiquette! Still, Jesus met her where she was and had that wonderful encounter! 

There was a beautiful prayer space set up of Ezekiel 47 including stages of the river, bringing life and sustaining trees, and some personal reflection time with very loose boundaries both before and after lunch. During this time retreaters were provided with options to aid their reflections including a walking map, paper and paints, coloured pencils, air drying clay and pebbles, but most importantly time to just be. 

In the afternoon Helen and Nick each presented an Out of the Box Story – STARFISH and STEPPING STONES – which were really powerful and people engaged with them incredibly deeply.   

It was a gentle time together and the whole day felt very sacred. 

The next meeting of the Godly Play Norfolk and Norwich Network is on Saturday 5 October. Venue TBC. The network is open to anyone with an interest in Godly Play and is free to attend. To find out more please contact Fiona Prentice. 

For more information about Out of the Box visit