An urgent call for your help! Our vision for an interfaith retreat centre…

Sat, 2012-10-13 15:21


This is the Convent of the Poor Clares at Woodchester. It is a beautiful, peaceful, spiritual place: a Cotswold home for prayer and worship for the past two hundred and sixty years (the nuns left only last year). We know in our hearts that this old convent would be the perfect space to welcome you all: to join us for retreats and trainings, for inter-faith celebrations and camps, for intensive studies and personal retreats, for workshops and classes, and for quiet times of healing rest. We see it as a gracious open house for interfaith relations, for yoga and for devotional music and song.

You can make a virtual visit to the place yourself The password is 'woodchester' We have seen clearly how this wonderful place could be a bright beacon for conscious living, a practical, healing example of harmonious relations between those of many faiths, living and working, praying, meditating, singing and practicing together, and sharing their skills and knowledge widely. The convent was built for a spiritual community and we feel that its future is to house an openhearted, welcoming community of residents and visitors committed to the evolution of human consciousness through joyful interfaith connection and through trainings and practice, for example through many forms of spiritual practice, including yoga, especially yoga nidra, meditation and other healing arts. The price for purchase has been reduced from £2.25 million to £1.7 million. This includes 26 acres of land, with a spring and with farm buildings also. We have been devising a business plan for the use of the Convent, and feel very clearly that it is crying out to be used still as a home for a spiritual community. We have been in discussion with the owners, the Catholic Diocese of Clifton, about leasing the property and the land but this is not an option. Purchase is the only way forward.

So please, if this vision resonates with you, then we are urgently asking for your help.

Many people have come forward to offer hands and hearts to help grow a community that could host all the activities we can envision. But hearts and hands alone will not raise the funds to purchase the property. If you, or anyone known to you would love to invest in the purchase of this astonishing place of beauty and spirit, please do let us know. We invite you to contact as us soon as you are able. The very kind guardian angel (in human form) who loves the spirit of the Convent and its lands has recently informed us that another prospective purchaser is very close indeed to having sufficient funds to purchase the Convent as a housing project. But we feel that such a powerful, consecrated and prayerful place is vitally needed in these challenging times, and we know that the work we do and the work of all those colleagues of ours who are sharing yoga, light and hope should find a home here in the Convent.

Please now help us to make this vision a reality. Hold the spirit of the place in your heart, and help us to keep it safe as a home for all the good work that could be done there, and for all the people whose lives could be lit up by a visit to this place. Do send this link to anyone you know who may be able to help. We trust the right people will be there to help secure the future of the convent as a spiritual community. Please, if you are able, do email us at to tell us about the investors you know who can help us purchase the property to secure its future use as a centre of healing and spiritual work. We encourage you to contact us as soon as possible, before the place is bought for other purposes, and before yet another consecrated place of light and prayer is converted into apartments.

With great respect and love, we send warm wishes for your well-being and we invite you to support us in this endeavour, Uma Dinsmore-Tuli and Nirlipta Tuli