This article was sent in to the Healing Pathway newsletter.

The pandemic has given us a unique opportunity. Grace United Thornbury's group of 6 practitioners, called "Prayerful Ministry," has been meeting weekly on Wednesdays since our first Phase 1 workshop in 2014. We start every session with a meditation. We usually practice or offer sessions for one another, and occasionally have offered sessions by appointment for members of the congregation or wider community. We also offer prayer for particular intentions, or requests.  

We have shifted meetings to Zoom during the pandemic. We had previously offered one or two distance sessions "by intention," but once we began meeting by Zoom we considered how to offer sessions using this technology. We started by offering a session for one of our group members, and have since offered sessions for contacts as far away as Ottawa and Edmonton.  

We have been adapting to some differences in Zoom sessions.
·         The practitioners agree on where they envision the person’s head and their feet. Facing one another in the video screen, we are able to make eye contact and move with one another as if we are looking across the massage table. (Our first practice session the two practitioners had miscommunicated and both were on the same side of the receiver! We have taken care to establish who is where.)
·         We find we do not have to move the whole length of the person, but envision our hands placed in the appropriate spot, and only move slightly ourselves as we go from head to foot.
·         We do not have to ask permission to touch, but we do ask permission to enter the person’s energy field.
·         The receiver can hear our communication, and we are considering inviting the person to turn their volume down, so that our talking does not disturb their inner silence. They would have to be able to hear us, though, or else we could not let them know when the session is finished.
·         We are starting to streamline our verbal cues, i.e. during Full Body Balance, when hand placement differs for the two practitioners (solar plexus and heart, and then from heart through to Crown) each names out loud where their hand is placed.
·         So far, the group members who join us by phone have held the energy. We could also develop ways to coordinate when at least one practitioner is not on video.  

We have found that receivers are very grateful, and report feeling relaxed, grounded and uplifted during and after the sessions. It has been a revelation for us to find that our sessions can be offered to anyone, anywhere. We always had that possibility with distance sessions by intention, but it seems more accessible now that we are able to do them via Zoom. That has allowed us to offer sessions to people who are across the country from us.

We give thanks for the Spirit working through us even in these unusual times.    

Submitted by Thérèse Samuel, Marilyn Parkin and Paul Parkin. Grace United Church, Thornbury, ON. November 25, 2020.