This March in California, student participants in MB SOAR Santa Cruz March 22-30 partnered with two MB church congregations to reach the Santa Cruz and San Jose areas. One of these partnerships included inviting the neighbourhood to an Easter “Sneak Peek” event celebrating some new things that Shorelife Community Church offered the community…
“The SOAR participants who work alongside Shorelife will help staff a basketball camp for middle school students, prepare and serve meals to a homeless community—an ongoing ministry of Shorelife—help with manual labor for some projects on the church campus, serve at a local elementary school and help the church prepare for their annual prayer labyrinth and Easter services.
In both locations, prayer will be key, so teams will spend considerable time praying for the communities, the churches and the people. They will also spend time daily in Scripture, small groups and journaling.”
–SOAR Santa Cruz Targets California Communities
MB Mission offers new short-term opportunity within the U.S.
Of all the churches that could have been chosen to ‘partner’ with, why Shorelife Community Church? They have been using prayer labyrinths since 2006 and even before that had a history of contemplative worship, as was described in The Christian Leader, March 2008, page 15, Church incorporates prayer labyrinth into Holy Week:
Beside it on the same page was another article called The New Old Spirituality by Tim Neufeld (then professor of contemporary Christian ministries at Fresno Pacific University and on the pastoral staff at North Fresno MB Church), who wrote:
IMAGINE THIS SCENE. TEENS SILENTLY FORM A LINE in a hallway, patiently waiting late into the night to enter a room in which they will experience an ancient spiritual discipline: contemplative prayer. When they emerge from the prayer room an hour later, many have tears in their eyes, smiles on their faces and peace in their hearts. They have just walked a prayer labyrinth, an interactive 11-station experience in which the participants learn to practice the presence of Christ. Scenes like this are happening again and again in churches, camps and conferences all over North America.
– Church incorporates prayer labyrinth into Holy Week:
We don’t have to imagine it anymore. It’s happening. But who would have imagined it would happen in Mennonite Brethren churches and youth outreaches? Especially after all Menno Simons and his early Anabaptist followers suffered to stay true to God’s Holy Word and separate themselves from the unbiblical practices of their time.
For those who have been deceived into believing that a prayer labyrinth is compatible with Christianity, please read What is a prayer labyrinth? Are prayer labyrinths biblical? at http://www.gotquestions.org/prayer-labyrinth.html.
 ‘Good Friday Prayer Labyrinth’
 ‘Prayer labyrinth unwinds questions of faith’
Photograph: Dan Coyro/Sentinel
‘Santa Cruz County churches hold Good Friday observations’