Nicola Coombe writes: I often listen to the radio in the car after dropping my son Lucien at school. On Wednesday last week, on Radio 4, an Iranian woman being given temporary refugee residence in Sweden was the brief focus. The issue discussed drove a stake through my heart. By the evening I felt quite adrift with despair. She had escaped her country, seeking formal refugee status, having been violently abused in her marriage for 20 years.
What the radio journalism exposed was the fact that although her case entirely meets all of the conditions as agreed by international humanitarian law, it was on the way to being refused because if she was given sanctuary, Sweden – and other countries – would not want to cope with the inflow of women that would follow. In the interview the woman said that if she was sent back to Iran, she would instead kill herself.
Over dinner that night with a very wise woman, Binnie Dansby, I shared this sorrow (one of so many sorrows, yet somehow the one searing its way into awareness that night). Together we felt the knee-buckling sense of ‘what can we do?’
As the hours passed I felt a small but pulsing response to my prayer:
“Do what you do. Do what OneSpirit does. Do what its purpose is. Carry on.”
So I decided to bring to this blog a statement (see below) that our wider leadership team – faculty, staff and trustees – created in January, seeking words that felt authentic for us now. They reflect our own language for our own understanding of OneSpirit’s current overarching purpose, and are a work in progress. And whilst initially intended for our internal ‘staff’ journey only, all responses are warmly welcome.
What do you answer when someone asks what the purpose of our organisation and your work is? How do you describe the energy that we are given to steward, within which we then co-create? And regardless of the actual words – which will come and go – do you have a sense of the purpose, the power and the need for what we have been called to hold and bring into the world? And do you know how precious your own place and expression is, within this purpose? I pray you may. I pray we each may. See you at 11.58.
“Our work is participating in a
dynamic field of life/ love
in order to facilitate
awakening, inner leadership and reconciliation.
Our touchstones are
and spiritual transformation.”