Enabling all ages to grow in faith

Prayer and personality: the 2022 Festival of Prayer

After a two-year absence, the one-day Festival of Prayer returns to the stunning setting of Ripon College in Oxfordshire on Saturday 9 July. Join us to explore ways to develop a richer prayer life, as deeply thoughtful and experienced speakers help us understand its relationship with our personalities.

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Being yourself with God

Prayer takes us to the heart of God and our relationship with him, and just like any other relationship, understanding our own personality can be key to helping it flourish.

Our keynote speaker is Dr Gemma Simmonds CJ, who is a trained Ignatian retreat leader and spiritual director, a lecturer in pastoral theology at Cambridge, a Roman Catholic sister and a writer. Drawing on the words of Dom John Chapman, ‘Pray as you can, not as you can’t’, Gemma will highlight how to pray in ways that reflect our God-given personality and nature – and how to give ourselves permission to do so.

If praying in tune with your personality is something you’d like to explore more, Revd Jo Gallant’s follow-up session is for you, as is ‘the spirituality of being yourself’, led by the Ven Guy Elsmore. For an alternative approach, join ‘prayer and colour’ (Jan Palmer) or explore Forest Church with Revd Paul Cudby. Other speakers include BRF authors David Cole, Revd Clare Hayns, Revd Dr Emma Pennington and Tony Phelan, who explores the prayer life of Thomas Merton, as well as Ann Persson, former BRF trustee and author, and a host of others.

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Space to nourish the soul

You’ll be encouraged to keep a session free to enjoy this beautiful space with God, by praying or reading in the grounds or walking the garden labyrinth.

The Festival of Prayer is a collaboration between BRF, the Diocese of Oxford and Ripon College. The cost is just £35 and there’s a special offer for groups of five.