Diocesan press releases

Live community story-telling event to consider life as a stranger

A story telling event in Llangollen, hosted by Wales’ first Missioner in Residence, will hear real-life accounts of being a Stranger in a Strange Land.

Mark Yaconelli, a world renowned community and youth worker, has been working with churches and communities across North and Mid Wales since February.  He’s been pioneering storytelling events to develop community empathy, understanding and relations.

Hearth Project posterThe event on July, 29 at Llangollen Pavilion, is based around the theme of being a Stranger in a Strange Land and will hear from local people who’ve found themselves, for all sorts of reasons, as an outsider.

Mark, who’s been living with his family in Llangollen, said: “I’ve been running story-telling events across America for a number of years and find that they provide creative spaces that build community, cultivate compassion and celebrate individual courage.

“The theme of this event, Stranger in a Strange Land, reflects the anxiety we see around the immigration issue at the moment and asks us to consider that any one of us could find ourselves a stranger at some point in our life.”

As well as story-telling, the event will feature local musicians and bands.

Mark was appointed Wales’ first Missioner in Residence by the Bishop of St Asaph and arrived for a six month residency in February.  He’s been running youth worker training, storytelling workshops and spiritual retreats.  As his time in Wales draws to an end, he will be writing up his experiences and perspectives, as well as developing training materials to be used by the diocese.

Mark added: “My family and I have been deeply blessed by our time in Wales. The land, the culture, the humble and honest faith of the people are lodged deeply within our hearts. My hope is that I have helped mirror back to the diocese the great freedom and possibility that they have in God.”

The story-telling event at Llangollen Pavilion is one of Mark’s last public engagement in the Diocese.    It is free with suggested donations of £3 with all money donated going to SHARE who support homeless and assist refugees everywhere.

Stranger in a Strange Land takes place on July, 29 at 7pm at Llangollen Pavilion and is open to everyone.