As John Morton opened the door to AJ Clarke’s car to travel back to London on the next part of his unceasing journey, I asked him, “Will you come back next year?” He didn’t reply, so I asked again and he smiled and gave a half nod.
You see The Traveller’s visits here are so precious, treasured by all who come. There were about 65 MSIA people at Borde Hill in Sussex, the home of AJ and Eleni Clarke. Most were British but some had flown from far away; America, Ireland, Australia and Germany, to be with us that day.
We sat in an airy room as Leigh opened the day with her memories of meeting J-R back in 1976 and her pathway as an initiate. She talked of love, of joy and gratitude and showed us two J-R Moments of Peace before introducing John to fill not just centre stage but the whole room with his thoughts, stories, teachings, laughter and love. It was evident he was working hard in our community.
At the all too soon lunch break, delicious food was served. We ate in rooms steeped in history or outside on terraces overlooking the gardens. This was a perfect opportunity for us to meet old friends, make new ones and realign ourselves in spirit.
In the afternoon for those on discourses, initiates, and ministers, John gave a second seminar and a Q&A. We were indeed blessed.
It was fitting that we were in Borde Hill, an Elizabethan Mansion, in southern England, set on 200 acres of beautiful and historic gardens, parks and woodlands. AJ and Eleni have welcomed so many of us into MSIA through events in their home. And as they were celebrating 125 years of the Clarke family residing there, Lily Watersone presented them with a statue of St Francis from all of us to pop somewhere in the garden.
We also celebrated 50 years of MSIA and 30 years since John received the keys from J-R in London.
So the sun shone obligingly in a cerulean blue sky, a rare tree bloomed for the first time in 90 years and then it was time to part, to say goodbye remembering that the good thing about farewell is saying ‘hello my friend’ when we meet again. Like J-R, John never leaves us, and we can journey anywhere to see him. The photograph will remind him of who was here and that we intend that this time next year we will be greeting John Morton and Leigh Taylor-Young Morton once more here in Britain. Come and join us!