A visit to North Wales: a Tabor experience

Published on 30 Apr 2019

by Marvic Sammut

The last week of February proved to be an eventful week which left me feeling confused and tired. It was the "straw that threatened to break my back"!

Friday, 1st March brought with it St David’s Feast Day. Four years ago, I had the privilege of living in North Wales for over a year and, through St Beuno’s and the Bangor Prego Outreach group made some very good friends there.

I sent St David’s Day greetings on Facebook and one of the return greetings said “St David’s Day greetings from beautiful North Wales!” A little Welsh flag completed the message. The “beautiful North Wales” and the Welsh flag made me so wish I was in North Wales! But, no, I thought to myself, I needed to postpone this visit for a few more months.

However, during the weekend, I realised that I clearly needed a break away right then! … And “beautiful North Wales” and the Welsh flag won! I flew to Manchester on the following Wednesday. In spite of the windy and rainy weather during most days, this unexpected holiday proved to be very much a “Tabor” experience for me!

As I drove down the A55 again, it felt good to be back in North Wales. As I drove past Llanddulas towards Colwyn Bay, the sun came out and a beautiful rainbow rose out of the sea. What a grand welcome!

In the evening, I met a friend at St Beuno’s and then stayed on for Ash Wednesday Mass. As I sat quietly in the familiar Chapel, the peace and quiet of the place gently started replacing the tiredness and confusion of the previous months.

During the days that followed, I met many of my friends in North Wales. It was good to catch up with them and also to seek their wisdom. I also made some new friends at the Noddfa Centre in Penmaenmawr. Truly, “A sweet friendship refreshes the soul.” (Proverbs 27:9)

Sunday morning brought snow with it and some was still on the hills on Monday morning, which dawned bright and sunny. So I took a scenic route through Bethesda, the Ogwen Valley and then through Capel Curig. As I left this village the valley opened up in front of me and Mount Snowdon greeted me in the distance. Pen-y-Pass once again revealed the breathtaking grandeur of these mountains.

The last evening of my visit found me at Mass at St Beuno’s, a tradition which I try to keep whenever I am in North Wales.

Just as Jesus and his disciples descended Mount Tabor to return onto the path towards Jerusalem, this is the path we all tread as we descend our Mount Tabors. These revitalising moments do, however, remain in our hearts to return to for an uplifting rest.