Gareth Brandt (Professor of Practical Theology at CBC) brought a vivid retelling of his personal journey of healing through spoken-word poetry. Lost Boy, a common metaphor for youth damaged by the actions of others was the theme for a series of readings which offered images ranging from the dark (“wounded boy, trying to be a man”) through emotional (an unguided bulldozer going over a cliff to crash upon the ground) to the joyful (a calf leaping in blinded abandon in sunlight) that mirrored his own journey from hurt to healing through seven stages of denial, fear, pain, despair, anger, acceptance and reconciliation. Gareth insists that healing is possible in all cases, but the work involved in healing confronts people, and the easy way out – instant forgiveness – isn’t worth the words expressed by it. Noting that wounded people often become empathetic healers themselves sometimes to avoid dealing with their own hurt, Gareth nonetheless insists that healing is possible and desirable for everyone, and later shared that his own healing did involve meeting with his abuser, but that it was not a necessary condition for healing. More on Gareth’s journey is available on his blog at garethbrandt.wordpress.com. [AP]
Regrettably, the audio recording of Gareth Brandt’s talk is unusable and can’t be posted on the PGIMF web site due to electrical interference from a poor-quality cord. The CD is available for borrowing for those who wish to struggle through the awful noise, but the message will not be posted to the website. Gareth’s newest book is also available for sale.