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We embrace the process of transformation in Christ, both in ourselves and in others, through the practice of Centering Prayer.

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Desire and Everyday Mysticism
Fr. Daniel Renaud, OMI
Voices of Community

In our lives and in our prayer practice, we often unconsciously live out two different types of spirituality ... It is a spirituality of desire that meets our deepest aspirations, because it is based on the encounter with the other and plunges us into a new birth in God's love. It calls us beyond the self to deepen our identity as a gift from God.

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Contemplative Spirituality
Introducing Centering Prayer and the Practice of Silence to Young Adults
Patricia Shahen and Peter Morgan
Voices of Community

... At one point, we noted that we were all over 50, and many of us were 65 plus. We talked about the need to include young people in our Centering Prayer groups and about ways to introduce them to the practice of silence, which seemed especially important in this digital age with constant, instant feedback. ...

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Centering Prayer, Father Thomas Keating
Tuning-in to Nature
Camille Bunting, Ph.D
Voices of Community

If we take time to look and listen, nature provides space and oxygen to breathe, salve for our souls and encouragement for our spirits.  However, to access that bounty, there is a tuning-in process that requires entering a slower pace than that to which we are accustomed.  Tuning-in is not about looking at and appreciating nature, but actually experiencing it and in doing so, developing eyes to see and ears to hear the voice of the Divine cosmos. There are messages for us in Nature.  But how exactly does a person tune-in to receive those messages? 

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Centering Prayer, Contemplative Spirituality
A Lenten Visio Divina at Gallery W83 in NYC
Lindsay Boyer
Voices of Community

When it was time to exhibit the wood block prints that came out of her residency at the foot of Mt. Fuji in Japan, Julie Shelton Snyder wanted to create not only a gallery show, but also an event that would acknowledge the relationship between the contemplative nature of her work and her 14 years of Centering Prayer practice.  I was delighted when Julie and The Gallery at W83 approached me to help create a contemplative experience that would honor the connection between Julie’s art and her Centering Prayer practice.

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How Contemplative Outreach of South Africa came into being
Elizabeth Norton-Amor
Voices of Community

Our founder was Winnie Young, and in 1995 Fr Carl Arico (on his first of 4 visits) helped her establish an ad-hoc national committee.

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Sacred Pathways Into Centering Prayer
Jim Reale
Voices of Community Read More.
Who Will Replace Thomas Keating?
Phil Jackson
Voices of Community

Who will replace Thomas Keating? I’m starting to hear that question more. This is not a new question. It has been asked hundreds of times or more before our beloved 95-year-old spiritual father passed. Thomas answered this himself though. He was asked, with varying degrees of tact, “Who will replace you?”, and he would reportedly answer “You! and you, and you, and you…” to those in attendance at the time.

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Centering Prayer, Father Thomas Keating
Remembering Our Beloved
Julie Saad on behalf of The Governing Board of Contemplative Outreach
Voices of Community

Well done,
my good and faithful servant.
Come, share my joy.
- Matthew 25:21

As we mourn the passing of our beloved teacher, Fr. Thomas Keating, let us reflect on all that we have been given and discern together where we go from here.

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Father Thomas Keating
Governing Board Updates Voices of Community

As Pat Johnson prepares to retire from her role as administrator of Contemplative Outreach Ltd. at the end of 2018, the governing board agreed by consensus to appoint her to serve as a member of the board.  The term of this volunteer position is for two years beginning January 1, 2019.  The appointment would fill the vacancy left by Lois Snowden’s departure after four years of dedicated service.

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The Wind Beneath Our Wings
Robbin T. Hartridge
Voices of Community

I first met that Irish monk years ago on the sidewalk.
I was alone, hesitant, looking for belonging
It was just the two of us standing there before Mass
when I found myself disappearing into the vast recesses of his robe
lost in the most loving, enrapturing hug I could possibly imagine
along with the thought that I could fly that day.

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Feeling Into the Great Love and Spaciousness That Is the Being of Father Thomas Keating
Alan Krema
Voices of Community

My relationship with Fr. Thomas Keating has not been lengthy in terms of time but has been lasting in support for my practice and ministry and is embedded in my body as an opening to an eternal love.

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Father Thomas Keating
Letter to Fr. Thomas from Ken Wilbur
Ken Wilbur
Voices of Community

A letter that Ken Wilber sent to Father Thomas shortly before he passed.

 

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Father Thomas Keating
The Integrity of the Teaching of the Centering Prayer Method
Fr. Thomas Keating
Voices of Community

The integrity of the teaching of the Centering Prayer method is presented in the four guidelines and its conceptual background as described in the Method of Centering Prayer brochure.

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Centering Prayer
The Song in Our Hearts
Rae England
Voices of Community

In the spring of 2002, we brought a young man from Kosovo to Dallas to be fitted with a prosthetic.  He had been living in England where he was expecting to receive immigrant status when the war broke out in his country.  “I couldn’t stand by and see my family in danger without doing something to help”, he told me and so he returned to Kosovo. 

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Praying with the Eyes of the Heart
Carol Quest
Voices of Community

Minnesota Contemplative Outreach sponsored an event called “Praying with the Eyes of the Heart.”  We gathered at the Minneapolis Institute of Art and began with Centering Prayer and then went in groups of four into the museum, each group guided by a “museum sage.” ... 

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Centering Prayer, Lectio Divina, Contemplative Spirituality
The Art of Divine Therapy
Bob Mischke, M.D.
Voices of Community

Fr. Thomas Keating states that two things happen in the inner room:  We get in touch with our basic core of goodness, and the process of divine therapy is initiated and unfolds.  What is divine therapy and how does that happen?

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Centering Prayer, Father Thomas Keating
Centering Prayer and Embodied Contemplative Practices – My Experience
Josefina Fernandez
Voices of Community

The article in the January 2018 e-bulletin, "Contemplative Movement" by Robin Gates, affirmed so many experiences that I observed during the first few years of my Centering Prayer practice. I noticed that my body began asking for movement as never before during reading, working on the computer, attending conferences, etc.

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Centering Prayer, Contemplative Spirituality
Centering Prayer: Practicing The Peace That Passes All Understanding
Josh Gilmore
Voices of Community

On the western wall of Greystone chapel within Folsom state prison hangs a mural painting. A reconstruction of Leonardo Da Vinci’s "Last Supper," painted by a Folsom inmate nearly a century ago. The faces, those of other convicts the inmate artist was serving time with, adorn the bodies of the twelve disciples who surround the central Jesus figure as they react to the news of his imminent betrayal.

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Table Discussion, Overall Summary from the Contemplative Outreach Conference in Denver, September 21-24, 2017
John Kelsey
Voices of Community

The following is an edited collection of comments generated during several hours of small group discussions at the Contemplative Outreach Conference in Denver September 21-24, 2017. 

Comments were gathered from 15 posters prepared during the course of the conference.  These are the prayerful thoughts and hopes of our contemplative community. 

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The Good News of Accompaniment
Chandra Hanson
Voices of Community

... An encounter with Divine Love captivates.  It changes us.  Sue’s “yes” brought something to life in me and in the group; it called me on and encouraged me to stretch in new ways, giving me new eyes with which to see the Spirit’s movement among us.   It prompted conversations in the circle about the miraculous paradox of God’s transcendence and immanence; more than many in the “free world,” those who are incarcerated often both better understand the Reality that transcends time and space and better appreciate the gift of in-the-flesh visitors whose simple presence communicates God’s love and care.  There is a reason God took on flesh.  I am humbled and filled with gratitude every time I travel to join the inmates for our circle, knowing that simply by showing up I participate in God’s ongoing Incarnation. ... 

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The Good News of Accompaniment
Chandra Hanson
Voices of Community

... An encounter with Divine Love captivates.  It changes us.  Sue’s “yes” brought something to life in me and in the group; it called me on and encouraged me to stretch in new ways, giving me new eyes with which to see the Spirit’s movement among us.   It prompted conversations in the circle about the miraculous paradox of God’s transcendence and immanence; more than many in the “free world,” those who are incarcerated often both better understand the Reality that transcends time and space and better appreciate the gift of in-the-flesh visitors whose simple presence communicates God’s love and care.  There is a reason God took on flesh.  I am humbled and filled with gratitude every time I travel to join the inmates for our circle, knowing that simply by showing up I participate in God’s ongoing Incarnation. ... 

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Contemplative Movement
Robin Gates
Voices of Community

Heaven and Earth converge in our bodies. The body is our teacher. It gives us messages and grounds us in the sacred present. It is the temple of the Holy Spirit. It longs and prays for our hospitality, to be seen, heard, integrated, and welcomed back into wholeness. One way to offer hospitality is through contemplative movement ...

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Centering Prayer, Welcoming Prayer, Contemplative Spirituality
Simple Sharing; Huge Impact
Martha Johnston, co-coordinator of Contemplative Outreach of Maryland and Washington (COMW)
Voices of Community

“How should we use our money?"  The team realized that we had been maintaining a healthy bank balance, and we wanted to do more than just tithe to Contemplative Outreach Ltd.  We wanted to focus the money on specific projects.

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Centering Prayer
Waking Up and Growing Up
Leslee Terpay
Voices of Community

Fr. Thomas has asked the Centering Prayer community to spend the next year going back to basics. For much of the past 12 years I have been revisiting Thomas’ teachings on Centering Prayer and the Christian spiritual journey by serving at least one long Centering Prayer intensive retreat a year in which I prepare by reading both Open Mind, Open Heart and Invitation to Love. This may seem a little over board in terms of preparation but I find each yearly reading brings me closer to absorbing the materials with my heart rather than my head.

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Centering Prayer, Lectio Divina, Contemplative Spirituality, Father Thomas Keating
A Contemplative Prayer Gathering In the Midst of Tragedy
Alan Krema
Voices of Community

The tragedy of the Las Vegas shootings would be devastating enough on its own.  But this unfathomable trauma has happened in the midst of other tragedies—such as the recent hurricanes affecting Texas, Florida, Puerto Rico, and the Caribbean, the major earthquake in Mexico, and the usual level of local and global violence.  Many of us feel shaken to the core, awakening in us a depth of sadness not just for the victims, but also for all of humanity.  

Yet what can we do?  We feel helpless, distant, isolated, and also needing to carry on with our own lives.

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