Labyrinths for transformation, healing and peace topic at talk in Lewes

By Cape Gazette staff

Cape Gazette of Lewes, Delaware

Labyrinths are ancient paths found in cultures throughout the world. Not tied to any one religion, they have been walked for centuries by those seeking peace, comfort and healing, and they are often found in places where spiritual strength is sought.

'Labyrinths have a fascinating history that goes back at least 4,000 years," says Mary Van House, who will lead a presentation on "Labyrinths: Tools for Transformation, Healing and Peace" in the parish hall of St. Peter's Episcopal Church, 221 Mulberry St., Lewes, Thursday, July 14, at 7 p.m.

Van House says it remains a mystery why or how labyrinths appeared in such a variety of cultures and spiritual traditions. "What we do know is that walking or tracing a labyrinth reduces anxiety, brings comfort and insight into the issues in our lives, and helps us see our lives as a path or journey.''

Her presentation will include a brief history of labyrinths, as well as how and why people use labyrinths today, where to find labyrinths locally, and the background of three labyrinths associated with St. Peter's. The indoor hand-painted canvas labyrinth completed in 1995 was the first labyrinth in the state of Delaware.

The evening will also include a celebration of the renovation of the outdoor solar-powered labyrinth in St. Peter's churchyard. The renovation was overseen by Austin Ross as an Eagle Scout project.

The third labyrinth is located in St. Peter's Cemetery on Pilot-town Road.

To acquaint more people with "walking the labyrinth," Van House says that both the renovated churchyard labyrinth and the original canvas, Chartres-design, indoor labyrinth will be available for walking Sunday, July 17, from 4 to 7 p.m. The public is invited to experience this ancient form of meditation.

Volunteers will be available to answer questions, and first-time walkers are especially encouraged to visit.

Van House is an experienced counselor with a master of science in counseling and pastoral care from Neumann University, Aston, Pa. She has worked as a hospice grief counselor and currently has a private practice in Milton where her focus is supporting people who have experienced relationship and life changes or loss.

A certified labyrinth facilitator, she helped to create the original St. Peter's labyrinth in 1995, and has been conducting workshops and events using the labyrinth for over 20 years.

On July 21, Dr. Uday Jani will speak on "Reclaiming Medicine's Spiritual Roots." For a list of speakers at the Summer Spirituality Series until Sept. 2, go to

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