With the paint only recently dry on this year's stunning Roberts Creek mandala, Sunshine Coast painters have also just finished revitalizing a second giant circular painted work: the labyrinth at St. Hilda's by the Sea Anglican Church in Sechelt.
But unlike the Creek's well-known mandala, St. Hilda's rector Rev. Clarence Li says many onlookers aren't quite sure what to make of the green, white and red labyrinth, which is a replica of one that's embedded in the floor of Chartres Cathedral in France.
"Sometimes people refer to it as a maze, some people refer to it as the mandala," he said. "I even heard someone jokingly say it's a chopper's landing pad."
But Li said unlike a maze, which serves to confound people with all its false paths and dead ends, the labyrinth's single path allows people to meditate, emptying their minds as they walk its twists and turns, always knowing they'll reach their destination.
Parishioner David Moul, who co-ordinated this year's 200 odd hours of repainting efforts, said the labyrinth has now been repainted three times since it was created in 2002.
Moul, who also has a labyrinth at his Roberts Creek home, explained a three-step meditation process for using the labyrinth: using the walk in to de-clutter your mind; meditating, centring or praying at the centre; and then coming out, carrying whatever you've learned through the process.
"We like to say you're being spun back out into the world, so whatever you've learned, it's not just to be held in your own mind, it's to be shared with the community," he said.
Moul's wife Stephanie, who also put in a lot of hours to this year's repainting efforts, said she uses the labyrinth - and the one at her home - to cope with the pain of living with fibromyalgia.
"If it's a day when I've got a lot on my mind, I do that meditative walk and in the centre, say, 'This is what is, I will live well with what is.' And then I walk out and it's kind of like I've left it behind," she said.
Besides its use as a coping mechanism, the labyrinth can help enhance happy moments - such as Li's wedding, tomorrow, to his partner David Todd.
Li, who joined St. Hilda's as its new rector in February after ministering for seven years at St. James' Anglican Church in the Downtown Eastside, said before coming to St. Hilda's, it wouldn't have crossed his mind to get married in a labyrinth. But now, he said, he and Todd see it as a meaningful way to symbolize joining their lives together.
"We will enter the labyrinth as individuals, and we will have the blessings of our civil union at the centre, and afterwards we will walk out together," he said. "It's like starting a common journey together."