Welcome to St. Clare’s Labyrinth and Clare’s Fare Garden
Clare’s Fare Garden was born in October 2020 when a group of amazing gardeners who wanted to serve had a vision for turning an unused field behind the church into a source of fresh organic food for people in need. Inspired by their hard work, church volunteers got to work realizing a long-held goal of creating a prayer and meditation labyrinth that could be used for worship by our parish, and as a place of prayer and peace for the surrounding community. With its dual mission of feeding the hungry (in body and spirit!) and protecting God’s creation, we believe this garden and labyrinth is something our patron saint, Clare of Assisi, would have approved of!
Clare’s Fare Food Garden
The garden surrounding our labyrinth is dedicated to raising fresh, organic produce for those in need in our community. Founded in 2020, the garden is a joint mission between volunteer gardeners from the community (many of them members of the Livermore-Amador Valley Garden Club, a non-profit educational and service organization) and St. Clare’s Episcopal Church. Along the way, the garden has been blessed with generous donations from Alden Lane, StopWaste, “Zoopoop” and various neighbors who come by to visit and donate.
Since it began in October 2020, the garden has grown to include four 100 ft beds, a Pollinator Garden, an herb garden, a Hugelkultur bed, 18 fruit trees, a greenhouse, tool shed, a succulent garden, and numerous smaller beds. The harvest benefits two groups, La Familia and Culinary Angels, by providing fresh, organic produce for their clients. It also serves as a model garden for those interested in learning about growing food and creating sustainable outdoor spaces, and has hosted our preschool children for lessons about butterflies, composting, and pumpkins.
For more information on the garden or to volunteer, visit https://clares.garden/
Welcome to our labyrinth
For thousands of years, spiritual and religious traditions have used labyrinths as tools for meditation, prayer and healing. That’s because walking the labyrinth takes focus. Even though the way ultimately leads to the center, it progresses slowly around the circle, at times moving forward, only to double back in the opposite direction. In many ways, walking the labyrinth is symbolic of life’s journey. Whatever twists and turns you encounter, the important thing is to keep on walking.
Guidelines for Walking the Labyrinth
The labyrinth looks a bit like a maze, but it is not a maze; there are no tricks or dead ends. You follow it round and round to the center, pause there, and then using exactly the same pathway in reverse, you return from the center and the entrance becomes the exit. The path is in full view the whole time, which allows you to be quiet and focus internally. You don’t need to think about it or work out where to go, leaving you free to walk on your own inner journey. Most people walk the labyrinth in silence. Some pray or meditate. Others simply observe each step and breath along the way. Some people come with questions. Some come during times of grief and loss. Others simply seek a way to slow down and take time out from a busy life. Some come to find strength to take the next step. Some come without any fixed idea of what it’s for — you just walk it, and maybe a purpose reveals itself along the way.
There are three basic stages to the walk:
- The Inward Path. This is a time for release or confession. As you walk ever deeper into the labyrinth, quiet your mind, and let go of those things that need to be forgiven, cleared, confronted, or healed. Make room for God’s peace to enter in, and listen to your heart, God’s voice, and the sounds of the garden.
- The Center. This is a place of meditation and prayer. Pause awhile. Receive what is there for you to receive. Reflect on what the inward walk has stirred within you. Breathe in God’s grace.
- The Outward Path. You return along the same winding path that took you inward, taking the gifts you have gained back out into the world. With each step or breath, lift up your prayers for those in need, and our hurting world. Give thanks for the insights and blessings you have received.
Note: Please be considerate of others using the labyrinth, and treat all you meet here — and this space of worship and meditation — with respect. Know that, wherever you are in your walk of faith, you are welcome here, just as you are.