Enter the Twilight School, another seed and planting of Bruno and those who gather to create a nutrient rich soil from which everyone can come and cultivate. This soil produces produce that cannot be replicated, yet can be spread and shared by all.
Twilight is for everyone, for people from all walks to come to sit, gather, think, unwind, hear questions voiced or ask them out loud to some of the most amazing people on earth. We are a collection of thinkers knit together by the common ground of conversations that are catalysts for and creators of an atmosphere that will send a ripple effect out into the reaches.
“Welcome” is a common greeting from Bruno, who seems to attract some of the finest minds and most interesting people anyone would have the privilege to be amongst. There you are, an audience ready to dip their minds in the ink of conversation, to listen to some of the highest calibre of writers and forward thinkers, and then to process, collaborate and integrate. One thing is for sure: you will never leave the same!
The first twilight I had the privilege to attend featured Reverend Tim Costello, armed with his marker-filled notes on the ready. Bruno eased us in slowly with a delightful set of tables filled with old-fashioned egg-and-lettuce sandwiches and cakes of all sizes and types brought in by the gathering crowd, who soon settled to an intimate setting with hot and cold drinks on the ready. A glass of wine was available if it took your fancy to be enjoyed against an opulent setting of architecture that, in itself, is enough to keep one inspired.
Guests were all busily chatting, nodding politely as we passed by to enter into the main room, blessed with large windows framing the beautiful gardens. Live music filled the air: a mixture of easy listening and meaningful, thought-provoking lyrics set the scene for an unforgettable night.
Before too long, Bruno welcomed the crowd. Standing room only! Reverend Costello was seated across from Bruno and they began. Bruno wasted no time in getting to the nitty gritty topics we all want to ask about. We were taken on a journey through Tim Costello’s life: his family, his books, his passion.
Rev Costello’s face changed into a kaleidoscope of frames as we got to the tough questions. They were answered with more of a back and forth shift, and thought-provoking ownership was thrown out to the audience about our role in forgiveness and in the community. None of this was spoken in harsh tones but as an invitation: “Would you like to join in partnership and examine together with me the issues our world is facing?”
The night was both empowering and challenging at the same time. We also journeyed through asylum seekers and the foibles of the church throughout history, and again the gauntlet was thrown out, the facts and statistics offered up for us to weigh with a word here and there that created an atmosphere of pensive, pin-dropping, ink-swelling thought.
Reverend Costello ingeniously continued his rhetoric, the answers giving us, the audience, the weight of decision: forgiveness was one of the threads to his answers when asked about the church, not directly said but inferred significantly, at least for my mind, to ponder it, chew on it. The future of Australia, World Vision (in more ways than one), the history of Australia, politics, family: nothing was missed out, or if it was I was too full with what I had been fed, mentally, spiritually and philosophically.
The questions that followed were answered with a simplistic honesty, and I was left with much to ponder. The final highlight was the generous invite for the audience to continue their conversation with questions that had been on their heart. The mike was taken across the room and the questions and answers that followed were as rich and as provocative as the best of ABC’s Q&A.
One thing is for sure. You couldn’t possibly leave a twilight unchanged.
Photo credit: Amanda Piper