"The greater the work the more
important it is to establish it on
a solid foundation. Thus it will
not only be more perfect; it
will also be more lasting.”

St. Louise de Marillac

“Be diligent in serving
the poor. Love the poor,
honor them, my children,
as you would honor
Christ Himself.”

St. Louise de Marillac

 

Celebrating World Labyrinth Day

By Katelyn Rieder, Communications co-op

On May 4, 2024, World Labyrinth Day will be celebrated across the globe. At 1 p.m. in all time zones, people are encouraged to participate in a labyrinth walk, specifically in the name of peace. This means that for 24 hours, peace will be prayed for all throughout the world. We are fortunate to have our very own labyrinth here in Mount St. Joseph, right on the Motherhouse grounds.

There is no right or wrong way to walk a labyrinth. In contrast to a maze, a labyrinth does not have multiple solutions or paths you can take—there is one path in and one path out. Small bricks line this predetermined route. This path gives one’s mind a focus, so that we have an open space within to receive guidance, insights, or awareness.

After a visit to the Chartes Cathedral in Chartes, France, during the late 1990s, S. Donna Steffen brought the idea of a labyrinth to a summer congregational gathering. She found that doing a labyrinth walk was a very powerful method of meditation and prayer. Since we are so blessed to have grounds with lots of flat, open space, S. Donna felt a labyrinth would work well here. From there, the Leadership Team at that time worked to make the idea come to life. The SC labyrinth was then dedicated in June 2002.

Our labyrinth is situated in a clearing between the cemetery and Motherhouse, surrounded by nature. S. Donna doesn’t walk the labyrinth here as much as she’d like, but when she does, she finds it incredibly effective.

“If I’m walking the labyrinth—that’s what I’m attentive to. I do think it’s important that we involve our body as well instead of just sitting. If one is sitting in meditation, our mind can wander. But here, we have to pay attention to the path,” she reflected.

S. Donna is also involved with teaching labyrinth group workshops, both here and at other labyrinths. During these workshops, she advises the groups on how labyrinth walks can vary in experience based on group size. She shared, “If there’s more than one person, we’ll meet them on the path because it’s the same one in and out. So how do you negotiate that? There’s no right or wrong way, but we often negotiate based on what we do in life. Do you step aside, or do you make sure they step aside? The labyrinth becomes a metaphor for what we do throughout life.”

Even if a person is not able to walk or move comfortably, using a paper labyrinth is still an option. Travelling the path with your finger still involves both the mind and body in a similar manner. If you are unable to physically walk the SC labyrinth on World Labyrinth Day, we invite you to still participate by printing out the following graphic provided below.

By bringing a peaceful energy to World Labyrinth Day (specifically at 1 p.m. local time), we are participating in a worldwide effort to spread nonviolence and kindness. We invite everyone this Saturday, May 4 to pray or meditate in the name of peace.

Print this Paper Labyrinth if you would like to participate but can’t physically be there.

Contact Us