Poet , philosopher and priest, John O’Donohue, says, “The word “belonging” holds together the two fundamental aspects of life: being and longing.”

because I long to belong

PassionArt are working towards hosting a new city wide project with word artist Micah Purnell in partnership with the Centre for Theology and Justice, Manchester Cathedral, St Anns Church and Methodist Central Hall. The group will curate a city wide arts project and festival that tells the story of 600 years of faith and belonging in Manchester to coincide with the cathedrals 600th anniversary of being established as a Collegiate Church in 2021.

We are using the theme of BELONGING as a way to consider how faith communities have settled in the city of Manchester and contributed to the growth and culture of the communities that belong here. We plan to host a series of exhibitions, lectures and art installations with our partner spaces during 2019-2021, working with and commissioning artists to work with various groups to help tell their stories.

The project has grown from an initial commission from the Centre for Theology and Justice who commissioned graphic word artist Micah Purnell and visual artist and curator Lesley Sutton to begin creative conversations around the arts, theology and social justice. To learn more about the original project and to contribute to our conversation we would like to invite a number of people from a variety of backgrounds and contexts to tell us what belonging means to them. To learn more about our project “…I long to belong “ and contribute then CLICK HERE

Would you consider contributing your thoughts to our research? 

We would like you to write between 200 – 600 words on a personal response or story around what belonging means to you. You might want to use any of the following as a starting point for your writing. 

          • Where do you feel you belong? This might be a place, a village, a community, a family, a nation, a faith/religion, a small group of friends, a job, a social grouping, an identity grouping, a social media group, and many more. It may be a number of things or just one or two.
          • What makes you feel you belong? It might be the shared rituals you perform together, the similar clothes you wear, the birth place you share, the ideals you share, the stories you share together, the life that you have experienced together etc.
          • What does belonging feel like?
          • Do you have any objects that are special to you that signify your sense of belonging? These might be ornaments passed down to you through family, or a piece of jewellery, or an object you use in ritual, a book, a piece of cloth or clothing, anything that holds meaning and memory about your sense of belonging. Perhaps you can bring them along to the group and tell the story around the objects, or bring photographs to help tell your story.

Please can you send us an image to accompany your words, it may be of a place, your community or an object, or perhaps an old family photo, but we will need to have copyright permission to use it. Link your image to us via our Instagram page https://www.instagram.com/becauseilongtobelong/ or our twitter link @ilongtobelong

If you would like to contribute:

  • Please can you send your text and image by email to lesley@passionart.uk as a word document and a jpeg high res image. 
  • Please also provide a one sentence short biography of yourself.
  • By agreeing to submit a reflection you are giving permission for PassionArt to publish and use it as a part of the project.

To learn more about our latest project and contribute then CLICK HERE