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Update & Christmas Appeal 2023

Dec 24, 2023

Retreat centre

Dear friends of Campfire in the Heart,

With the strains of Silent Night nearby and 2024 close as well, we thought it a good time to tell you about some of the wonderful things that have been happening at CAMPFIRE IN THE HEART this year.

We very much want to acknowledge your loving support in so many different ways in 2023, it has been wondrous truly, so encouraging … we feel a bit shy about saying , as we did last year, this is our financially tough time as there is little on in summer to generate income and yet our set expenses like wages, power, water and general maintenance don’t stop. If you can see your way clear to make a donation to Campfire, no matter how small, that would be hugely appreciated.

There were many retreats and events held during 2023 as well as the regular get togethers like the Wednesday night campfire sharing, meditation groups and the contemplative book club, we would like to highlight 2 very different groups that give you a taste of the variety of offerings here .

In early July, DAVID’S PLACE visited, an inner city community of people who live precariously, most of whom had never been to the centre of Australia. It was a wonderful week long retreat with meditation morning and night , as well as other times of prayer where pairs of people from the DP community prepared times of reflection. It was also a time when we got to know each other better and to travel together to spectacular places like Simpson’s Gap and to seriously ponder the long history of Mparntwe including since settler times. Our prayer huddle/cuddles as we arrived at the Telegraph Station and other sites, seemed a fitting way to express something of our collective concern compassion and sorrow.

Kelvin who has been part of DP since its inception said that the days spent at Alice Springs were the happiest of his life. Jono comments in his write-up on the website Kel knows for sure the good spirits and after breakfast he said this morning that he finds them here in ‘Campfire in the Heart’. Others said they hoped they would get a chance to come back and do something similar. We do hope to do it again in 2025. A memorable time indeed.

A month earlier, a school group from COOMERA COLLEGE in Queensland had visited. Huss and Nicola, our managers, were deeply impressed with these young people and how they took such advantage of being in the special opportunity that CAMPFIRE IN THE HEART offers. They were led by Faith & Spirituality Coordinator Dominic Fay, who encouraged everyone to take responsibility to be present and to disconnect from the distractions that arise from habitual connection to the world of devices, to open their senses instead to this extraordinary place. In doing this a whole new reality opened for them and again this group left strongly committed to returning. See their inspiring write-up on our website here.

Again we give thanks for the encouragement and constructive feedback we get from so many of you, it is so important to us as we try to live the way of listening in the spirit of the Rule of Benedict, its heart and essence really. Each day the sense of being held in prayer by so many, sustains us. We feel we are surrounded by a cloister of prayer.

So a big thank you to you all.

If you can make a donation that would be very appreciated. The Bank details are-

BSB 633 000
ACC. 189251077

We also have a fundraiser for Campfire at present, with three of Paul’s artworks available in sticker form to brighten up your streetscapes (see photo below). For more info about our Bin Art Fundraiser please visit our website.

May your Christmastide be blessed with the gifts of Emmanuel, hope joy peace love …

Paul, Judi and the Campfire Companions (Board)

Retreat centre