Jay Walljasper writes at On the Commons:

There is a profound spiritual dimension to the commons, notes [the Very] Rev. Tracey Lind, dean of Trinity Episcopal Cathedral in Cleveland. Indeed, one of the most enduring forms of commons in the world are the sacred places that play an essential part in nearly all religions: temples, shrines, ritual sites, burial grounds, pilgrimage paths, holy springs, holy forests and holy mountains.

… She has brought a coffee shop, independent bookstore, Ten Thousand Villages fair trade store, art gallery, labyrinth and public square to the grounds of Trinity Cathedral. Anyone can come to browse, relax with a cup of coffee, walk the labyrinth, pray, reflect, read, check their email on the cathedral’s wi-fi system, or take part in one of the many events — religious and secular — that go on at the church.

Lind’s inspiration for Trinity Commons is Saint Angela Merici, who founded the Ursulines religious community in the 16th Century. “St. Angela, a native of northern Italy, instructed her sisters to ‘be like a piazza.’ By that, she meant them to be open, gracious, hospitable, and engaged in the world.”

Read the rest.

Hat tip: Daily Scan, from the Episcopal Church’s Office of Public Affairs