Welcome to Leuven
Leuven is a hospitable and walkable university town, about a 20 minute train ride from the airport station in Brussels (see below for more transportation details). What follows here are the initial details for the IALC regional (super-regional) meeting associated with the biennial gathering of Societas Liturgica. There will be more details to follow, and the link to The Leuven Institute for Ireland in Europe regarding room reservations – for now what follows gives initial information. Leuven is a centre for Flemish (Dutch) speaking Roman Catholicism, but French is widely spoken (even though Louvain is now technically down the road!), and embarrassingly fine English is almost universal.
The IALC steering committee will gather on Thursday evening, 3 August, and meet during the day on Friday, 4 August. Registration and official welcome for IALC will begin late afternoon on Friday at the Leuven Institute, Janseniuustraat 1, 3000 Leuven, Belgium. On Friday evening we will pray evening prayer at St. Damian’s chapel at 5:00; gather for a drinks reception at 6:30 back at the Leuven Institute, and have a buffet dinner, in-house, at 7:30.
On Saturday 5 August, we will make the most of our time together by meeting all day, beginning with morning prayer in our meeting room, a morning of conversation about bivocationality – first from established members (presentations and discussion) – and second from student members (still in school or in their first positions as liturgical scholars, diocesan leaders, or other). There is the option of a buffet lunch in house, or a walk out to one of the many restaurants in Leuven. We return for an afternoon reflecting on the experiences of Episcopalians and Anglicans in Europe in the face of the worst refugee crisis in history. How have parishes and communities engaged with refugees and non-refugees, what rituals and liturgies have given expression to hopes and fears, and how have they affected Anglican/Muslim relations? Additional time will be given to several topics on Anglican Sacramental Theology (sacramental theology being the topic of the SL Congress to follow).There will be evening prayer at 5:00 at St. Damian’s chapel, followed by a short presentation/workshop, Digital Tools for a Liturgist’s Life, and a free evening in Leuven.
On Sunday 6 August, we gather for Holy Eucharist at 9:30 at St. Damian’s chapel, followed by informal presentations on prayer book revisions by those present at the meeting (outlines, information will be posted on the webpage ahead of meeting). After lunch at local restaurants, we reconvene for a conversation about the new IALC pattern of meetings and information about the upcoming full consultation. At the conclusion of the IALC meeting, the steering committee will meet to follow-up on this regional meeting and prepare for the consultation. Registration for Societas Liturgica follows on Monday, but Sunday night room registration at the Leuven Institute is through SL (for those staying for meeting and choosing to stay at the Institute through the week).
Provincial Reports & Discussion Papers (click to access)
The Leuven Institute has given IALC a discount for rooms that will continue through the Societas Liturgica meeting. All the room rates include breakfast, and there is no additional charge for wifi or for our meeting rooms – a great bonus. The rate will be for a single room (twin beds) single occupancy, 99 euros a night; for a single room (twin beds) double occupancy, 65 euros per person (so 130 for the room for two); and to encourage student members to join us, a duplex room (3 or 4 beds) for 50 euros per person (I have seen these rooms, they are very roomy, ensuite, several are loft rooms, 2 beds down, 2 beds up, very nice)!
We will have several meals, coffee breaks, and a drinks reception together, which comes to a total of 69.65 euros (or 47.15 if you choose not to have the Saturday buffet lunch at the Institute). In addition, for those not students and not retired, an additional 10 euros for a mixture of smaller charges associated with the running of the meeting (copies, a donation to the chapel, etc). You can see by the variety of charges for rooms, one’s own status, and the option of Saturday lunch the totals will be different. None of the monies are due ahead of time, but room registration must be done ahead of time (as mentioned above, the link for room registration will be available on the IALC webpage very soon). The Leuven Institute also has its own bar, for those who want to avail themselves of that without walking around town. The chapel we are using for several liturgies is a block away, a very easy walk (and then downstairs in the crypt where St. Damian is buried). Finally, the best bargain meal places are the university restaurants , all called ALMA. Good food at a very reasonable price – we’ll be happy to point them out to you if desired!
Instructions for Completing and Returning Forms
1. Download form to your local computer
2. Close web browser
3. Open form on local computer (probably in “Downloads” or “Documents”)
4. Fill in information
5. Save a copy of the form to your local computer
6. Attach this saved copy to an email and send to the appropriate recipient:
Conference Registration: NeilV@anglicancommunion.org
Room Reserveation: firstname.lastname@example.org
For those arriving from other points in Europe or from the UK, the train system within Belgium will serve you well. For those flying a great distance, the Brussels airport is to the northeast of downtown (12 kilometres), technically within the small town of Zaventem. There is a train station at the airport, on the lower level, which makes moving from the plane to the train very easy. There is also a major bus station within the airport, and regular buses to Leuven too (although the bus takes about 40-45 minutes, the train about 20 minutes).
If you want to recover from jetlag before moving on to Leuven, I might recommend the Crowne Plaza Airport Hotel – free shuttle M-F back and forth to airport, very quite and restful. If you want to catch a couple days in Brussels first or last (Brussels is the major city and tourist centre with quite extraordinary museums and architecture), I might recommend the Novotel or Ibis which are right by the Brussels central train station (there are 4 train stations: the Brussels airport, Brussels north, Brussels central, and Brussels south) – all are clearly announced in Dutch and French. Leuven, to the northeast of Brussels, is therefore very close to the Brussels airport and train station. Once at Leuven train station (or bus station – they are together), the easiest thing is to take a taxi from the station to “the Irish College” – that seemed to work best. There is also Bus 2 (which will take you to St Michael’s church (Sint-Michielsstraat), from where the Leuven Institute is 3 blocks away, taking you by St. Damian’s chapel on the way to Janseniuusstraat. Most of the smaller roads are cobblestone – bring the right shoes!!!
For those staying on for SL, the Leuven Institute is not a site for general meetings, but is only 3-4 blocks from most of the meeting rooms (which are spread around this part of Leuven, but primarily making use of rooms associated with the College of Theology of KU).
As we head into the 50th anniversary of societas liturgica, it will be 34 years since Anglican members of SL met in a separate caucus at the Vienna meeting of 1983. As the original membership begins to retire, and new members join in, it would be lovely to gather digital photos together for a review to share on Friday evening. Please send (electronically) any pictures from earlier IALC gatherings – they will be most appreciated – and gathered into a slide show for Leuven!!