Sacred Labyrinth at Cross Wood UCC

Sacred Labyrinth at Cross Wood United Church of Christ
3908 Woodruff Avenue | Long Beach, CA 90808

A dedication ceremony was held on February 20, 2011 for the beautiful Sacred Labyrinth designed, built and donated by Juan Jose Camarena, a member of our nested Holy Trinity Congregation. The Labyrinth is now open to all who wish to have its design deepen their spiritual peace.

The Labyrinth provides a contemplative environment that serves to promote a sense of spiritual wholeness and emotional well-being within the community. Walking a labyrinth is a spiritual exercise to quiet the mind and allow reflection, contemplation, and prayer.

What is a Labyrinth?

A labyrinth is an ancient sacred meditation tool that helps quiet our minds, heal our hearts and soothe our souls. A labyrinth is a gentle, curving path that you follow to a point in the center and back out again. It is a metaphor for life’s journey.

Labyrinths are usually constructed from patterns using circles and spirals, based on principles of sacred geometry. The Labyrinth has one path that winds its way in a circuitous, curving fashion into the center and then back out. Distinct from a maze, which is designed to confuse the people who try to find their way through it, a labyrinth provides a clear, structured path that focuses and quiets the mind and opens the heart.

Labyrinths date back four to five thousand years. In the Middle Ages, many of the pilgrimage cathedrals had labyrinths. The best known medieval labyrinth is the one inlaid in the floor of Chartres Cathedral in France in the year 1201. Labyrinths are undergoing a revival of use and interest, largely through the efforts of Dr. Lauren Artress, an Episcopal priest at Grace Cathedral in San Francisco, who is considered the founder of the modern labyrinth movement.

Walking the Labyrinth

There is no right or wrong way to walk it. There are no rules or need for special training. You only have to enter and follow the path to the center; pause, and follow the path back out. When the world demands so much of us, what a relief it is to come to the labyrinth and just be.

Each person’s walk is a personal experience. How one walks and what one receives differs with each walk. Some people use the walk for clearing the mind and centering. Others enter with a question or concern. The time in the center can be used for reflecting, meditating, or praying, as well as discovering our own sacred inner space. What each person receives can be integrated on the walk out. Your walk can be a healing and sometimes very profound experience or it can be just a pleasant walk. Each time you walk the labyrinth is different.