A dedication ceremony led by Jesuit Community Rector Francis Hermann, SJ, was held on Oct. 7 at the new site across Beacon Street from Carney Hall. Following the blessing, Asst. Prof. Bruce Morrill, SJ (Theology), offered a brief history of labyrinths and an instructional session on walking the labyrinth. (Click here for photo).
Inspired by the labyrinths in Gothic cathedrals of medieval France, the Boston College labyrinth - a 50-foot circle of concentric rings forming a single path to the center that was painted on the lawn by the Athletic Association Maintenance worker Paul Gallivan - is intended to provide a space for prayer, reflection and meditation. A near duplication of the labyrinth on the floor of the Cathedral of Chartres, the BC labyrinth consists of 12 rings enclosing a single path that meanders to a center rosette through 28 loops, totaling some 300 yards in length.
Senior Timothy Sullivan - president of the BC chapter of the French honor society Pi Delta Phi, which led the effort to establish the labyrinth - said it offers a meditation opportunity for members of the BC community and the surrounding neighborhoods.
Prof. Rebecca Valette (Romance Languages) said last year's labyrinth was tremendously popular and reflects a national trend toward spiritual interest in the medieval prayer circles.
Visitors' responses to last year's labyrinth were catalogued in a guest book. "It helped me to be at peace and allowed me to reflect upon a significant issue that needs resolution," wrote one visitor. "Such a positive, peaceful experience; a form of prayer that relaxes and energizes; a strong connection to God and nature," said another. "Very soothing. Appropriate after a week of midterms," offered a student.
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