On 16th November 2006 the ‘Tree of Life’ project was launched in what was formerly the office of the ‘Love Bristol’ Festival (featured previously in Rapport). I am part of the initial steering group together with Rev. Alister Palmer (St Barnabas & Holy Cross), Rev. Chris Sunderland (Consultant from AGORA), Jackie Blackburn (member of St. Barnabas and Institute for the Inhabitants of Knowle West) and Tracey Pool (see Tracey’s story below).
The aim of the ‘Tree of Life’ is to create a safe place where local people can spend time with experts who lead them sensitively through the process of ancestral research via the Internet. It is also a place where spirituality can be explored and the Christian faith nurtured.
We seek to encourage creative imagination, make use of a whole range of creative arts and computer technology, identify and develop individual gifts and talents.
My specific role is to encourage people to produce a piece of creative writing, either poetry or prose, based on their family tree or background.
Another member of the creative team is Tracey Pool. Tracey is also the newest member of the Lee Abbey Knowle West Local Support Group.
She has kindly agreed to share some of her story:
“I first moved to Knowle West over 30 years ago, and attended what was then Merrywood Girls’ School.
“At that time I was staying with, and caring for, my elderly grandmother. After my grandmother’s death, I was placed in various foster homes in other parts of the south-west. Eventually, I returned to Knowle West where I met my husband, Barry. We now have two very creative sons: Jason (24) and James (21).
“I am a textile/fibre artist/storyteller. I have been developing these gifts to form part of my spirituality and work in arts & health.
“I became a Christian through having the boys baptised at what was then St Philip’s Methodist Church, Knowle West, and soon became involved in the life of the church through the Churches’ Covenant, which is now called ‘Knowle West Churches Together.’ I am currently training to be a Lay Minister within the Anglican Church.”
Please pray for the ‘Tree of Life’ project and for Tracey who is due to be licensed at Bristol Cathedral on 6th October 2007.