Imaging the Story: a course in the arts

Have you heard a good story lately? Maybe it was told to you by a neighbour or through a film script or at the school gate. I wonder which aspect of it drew you in and made you want to know more? How did the plot unfold, and did you begin to identify with a certain character?

We would be hard pressed to find a story with as many different aspects than the big story of God; there’e no shortage of suspense – what will happen to Daniel if he decides not to bow down to a statue as he’s ordered? There are tales of love and longing, of sacrifice and betrayal, murder and more …

There are so many ways to experience this story beyond reading; a sole actor on stage who memorises it and brings it to life, epic blockbuster films and children’s cartoons.  There are as many ways to tell this story as there are art forms! 

One approach to retelling this story through the art of making. I don’t mean illustrating but discovering something while making. For example, we might tap into a new way of knowing God if we think about a part of the story with a piece of clay in our hand. We make something of the story – quite literally – and may be surprised that something fresh opens up for us as we return to the text which we may understand a slightly different and richer way.

Imaging the Story is a course that invites us to be creative, not quite like God who creates from  nothing, but creating with the raw materials of creation. It is practical, reflective, fun and a good deal (just 5 per session)! What’s more, for the £50 course fee you get a copy of the full colour book, Imaging the Story , (co-authored by Rev Gill Sakakini), tuition from practising artists, refreshments, and all the materials required. 

The course kicks off in May and is hosted by St Mary’s Church on Monday evenings from 7:30-9:30pm. So check out the website and register to secure your place, then come along and give yourself permission to create in wood, film, metal, poetry, movement, prose, paint, clay, wool, games, music, fabric, vegetables, bread? Yes, really, all of those and more!

To find out more about this course, contact Rev’d Gill Sakakini, 01183 279321

To register go to

A review

Imaging the Story presents a window of opportunity in the busyness of life to stop, listen to, discuss and reflect upon different aspects of the biblical narrative. Exciting possibilities for personal and corporate responses unfold as examples of biblically inspired literature, poetry and art are considered. 

There is a  practical element to each session which is focussed, yet relaxed and great fun, providing an opportunity to explore words, objects and art materials in a prayerful way and then to use them creatively in response to a given theme. The culmination of this motivational and inspiring course is a rich and diverse exhibition of students work.

Imaging the Story definitely encourages individuals and groups alike, to move with a more considered and creative mindset,  in seeking to prayerfully interpret and express the truths of God’s word. This has the potential to affect and enrich one’s personal faith journey and that of small groups and our church communities. The exciting prospect of Christians expressing the Gospel in creatively diverse and engaging ways is the impact that this could have in our wider communities!

Woofs, Bellies, and Wellies

Woof Poster

Planning  your half-term activities? Have you a dog that needs walking?  Gather with us for a bacon butty, a drink and a circular dog walk. You don’t even need a dog to come! If you have children or grandchildren who are nervous around dogs this is a gently way to introduce them. Come just as you are, with old friends or to make new ones. For further information contact Rev’d Gill on 01183 279321.

Living Word

Every Wednesday at Living Word there is an opportunity to study the readings for the coming Sunday – but with a difference! What difference does it make to engage with the text imaginatively? Come and find out. We meet from 7:30-8:30.

The first Wednesday of the month is through contemplation and reflective reading and prayer and is at St Paul’s Church.

The second Wednesday is through study using various approaches, the third is through the arts; paintings, music, film etc., the fourth is round a table eating together, discussing over an agape meal at the earlier time of 7:00pm. All take place in St Mary’s Lady Chapel. When there is a fifth Wednesday we study on the move as pilgrims – outside!

An opportunity for reflection during Advent

Draw aside during Advent to reflect on the Scripture readings for the week ahead. Each week has a specific focus: week 1 – contemplation, week 2 – study, week 3 – the arts, and week 4 – food. Please call 0118 9321 for more information.

Please note that due to continuing work at St. Mary’s the second week of the course will be held at St. Peter’s Church, Church Road Tadley.  Then we should continue as planned.