Pictured: Italian, Venetian, Christ carrying the Cross © The National Gallery, London. Presented by Angus Neill, 2015
As part of their content partnership with Greenbelt this year St Martin-in-the-Fields will be introducing three exclusive ‘Inspired to Follow’ taster sessions. Alastair McKay explains more here …
How might one offer a more open-ended resource for exploring Christian faith than the likes of the Alpha course? And how can one do that by engaging better with our visually-focussed world? ‘Inspired to Follow: Art and the Bible Story’ is one way that’s been developed by St Martin-in-the-Fields. Their discipleship course uses fine art paintings from the National Gallery (on St Martin’s doorstep), a Biblical story and a short theological reflection, as spring boards to help people explore Christian faith today.
‘What people love about the course is engaging with a single visual image over the course of each session, in conversation with others, in the light of some initial reflections about us and God,’ says the course designer, Alastair McKay, a curate at St Martin’s. ‘Different people see different things within a painting, as they do within a Bible story. And they connect what they observe to their lives, in diverse ways. I love seeing people growing and opening up in their understanding and insight, and discovering God in new ways.’
Alastair will be showcasing three sessions of ‘Inspired to Follow’ at GB17, in collaboration with Ayla Lepine an art historian and ordinand, on Saturday, Sunday and Monday of the festival. The sessions – a cross between workshop and educational event – are being offered in the new Canvas venue on the ‘other side of the lake’.
‘Inspired to Follow’ is being publicly launched for the first time at Greenbelt 2017. And perhaps the best news is that all the materials for the 22-session course are provided free, in return for registering your details.
‘Inspired to Follow’ offers a space for us to explore together what it means to follow Jesus in today’s world. So there’s more questions than answers, as well as pointers to where answers can be found in God’s journey with us – through both the Biblical story and our journey in today’s world. An exciting new discipleship resource has arrived.
St Martin in the Fields will also be bringing Great Sacred Music to Greenbelt this year.