Reverend Andreas Sigrist with the Jasper Anglican Church is delivering a free webinar about hope on Feb. 25 and said there are three key concepts to think about: reality, goal and movement.
The webinar follows another about death and grief, which was offered through the Jasper Employment and Education Centre. Executive director Ginette Marcoux initiated the idea for the second webinar that is scheduled to run from 5 to 6 p.m.
Sigrist hopes to see a lot of participation.
“Hope is a capacity we have to move forward despite resistance,” he said.
“For me, there are three key concepts. Reality: I think it’s crucial to remember that hope never denies reality. (Secondly), hope never exists in a vacuum. It’s always linked to a goal.”
The third concept is to think about hope in terms of movement.
“It’s not something we have or don’t have,” Sigrist said. “It’s more like a muscle that has to be cultivated, to be trained.”
He noted how these concepts can be tied together into a story.
“One of the examples I’ll be using is a show on Netflix called Away. It’s about a mission to Mars. There’s this wonderful commander, Emma Green. She leaves her teenage daughter behind. It takes three years to get to Mars and back.”
Sigrist said the movie shows the strain between mother and daughter because of the distance between them but at the same time there’s a goal to get to Mars and establish life there.
”It’s that hope that allows them to move forward despite the despair the mom and daughter are feeling about being apart,” he said.
He described how that framework “exemplifies the way things are, not the way things are supposed to be. The hope is all about working toward the way things are supposed to be. We exist in between those two things: the way things are and the way things are supposed to be.”
Sigrist said feeling up and down is perfectly normal “in our emotional life and our inner life.”
“It’s like standing in a river and the river is flowing toward a waterfall,” he said. “You’re far away from the waterfall and it’s easier to not be swept away by the current. But the closer you get, the more strong the current becomes. The key here is to become aware of where we are and learn to listen to our emotions, to our lives and to how we respond to circumstances.”
While people can feel they are getting to their goal, other times they are overwhelmed, such as with the pandemic.
“That’s why we need to talk about it – the reality,” Sigrist said. “It’s not just about individual experience. It’s about the strength of community.”
Folks can register for the webinar through the Jasper Employment and Education Centre or by phoning or emailing Myles Berrington, adult education co-ordinator, at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Joanne McQuarrie, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, Jasper Fitzhugh