St. Philip’s Labyrinth

Why does St. Philip’s have a labyrinth in its front yard?

Monumental labyrinths date back to ancient Crete at least, and the description of a labyrinth figures prominently in the myth of Theseus and the Minotaur, which is centuries older.

So why would a Christian church appropriate this pagan device? At least as early as Boethius, in the 8th century, Christian writers saw the labyrinth as a symbol of life itself: a path of light and darkness, confusion and guidance. Pilgrims were encouraged to walk or crawl the path of a labyrinth as a meditative, prayerful exercise, to find direction and enlightenment. One of the world’s most famous labyrinths, at Chartres Cathedral in France, dates from the 13th century.

The St. Philip’s Labyrinth is a seven-circuit design based on the 16th-century labyrinth at San Vitale in Ravenna, Italy.

Try walking our labyrinth. Open yourself to the possibilities, and see what you experience. To share your insight or ask a question, email us at info@stphilipsnewhope.org.