ST. PAUL'S LABYRINTH
1130 Jervis St., Vancouver
Hours of opening
MONDAY - THURSDAY 8:30 - 9:30am
SATURDAY: 10:00 am - Noon
SUNDAY: 9:30 am - 12:30
2nd FRIDAY EVENING OF EACH MONTH 7:00 - 9:00 pm
This evening is a walk for Peace.
LAST FRIDAY EVENING OF EACH MONTH 7:00 - 9:00pm
This evening is a special walk with candlelight and live music.
For information about group visits, phone: the Labyrinth Office: 604-685-6832 (ext. 17)
St. Paul’s permanent labyrinth, a replica of the design laid in stone in Chartres Cathedral in France in 1202, will be open almost every day this summer.
Visitors are encouraged to walk along the labyrinth path, painted on the hardwood floor of St. Paul’s church hall in 1997, in a spirit of prayer and meditation.
“Walking the labyrinth is a spiritual discipline that invites us to trust the path, to surrender to the many turns our lives take, and to walk through the confusion, the fear, the anger, the grief, that we cannot avoid experiencing as we live our earthly lives,” says the Rev. Lauren Artress, an Episcopal priest attached to Grace Cathedral in San Francisco, author of Walking a Sacred Path.
“The labyrinth is a place where we can open ourselves to the Holy Spirit. We can ask for guidance and pray for ourselves and our loved ones,” says Artress, who is largely responsible for a surge in popularity of the labyrinth in North America.
The history of the labyrinth at St. Paul’s actually began in November 1996. At that time most people had never heard of a labyrinth let alone walked one, so a 30 ft. classical style (or “Cretan”) labyrinth was created. The much simpler design of this seven-circuit, classical labyrinth was easier to lay out and yet it still enabled people to experience just how useful a spiritual tool a labyrinth can be.
It became clear fairly quickly that the Labyrinth was a “success”. Those who walked the labyrinth found it helpful both in their spiritual life and their daily life. A decision was made to undertake the creation of a replica of the Chartres labyrinth.
St. Paul’s Upper Hall is a space 48ft. wide by 78ft.. In order to bring about the Chartres Labyrinth the hardwood floor of the Upper Hall was repaired and refinished. Faux-stained glass medallions were created and hung in 12 big windows. Seventeen volunteers from both the church and the community gave 250 hours of time to draw and paint the Labyrinth.
Volunteers maintain the Labyrinth at St. Paul’s and are usually present to answer questions when it is open. Our desire is to create a sacred space that welcomes pilgrims on their journeys.
- Jo Anne Tharalson, St. Paul’s Labyrinth Guild