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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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Introduction to Conscious Work
Alan Krema, a member of Contemplative Outreach of Chicago
Voices of Community

Is prayer a retreat for you into a separate place where you find rest and peace? If so, why do you not find peace, wholeness and harmony in your daily working life? Do you think it is impossible?

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Centering Prayer, Welcoming Prayer
A Homemade Psalm
Earl Lowen
Voices of Community

Oh God, an owl in the night calls out over and again...
"who...who-who ... are you?"

Dawn awakens the winter trees' long bony fingers, scratching at the
clouds..." tell us...tell us... where are you, God?"

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Centering Prayer
What are you doing here? A Centering Prayer Reflection
Neil Foley
Voices of Community

... Like so many before, I started by first seeking happiness – that illusive entity which is so physical and sensory when young. Happiness seemed to equate to pleasure, but pleasure is a fickle and fleeting ally. No sooner was I satisfied when I would desire again. Like the wind, it could be felt but not grasped. God was not in such pleasure. ...

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Centering Prayer, Lectio Divina, Spiritual Journey
Prayer of Diminishment
Sr. Helen Michael Horne, O.P.
Voices of Community

Each day, Oh Lord,
May I offer
less to You;
Each day to be diminished,

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Centering Prayer
A Very Different Holy Week
Marge Rafftery
Voices of Community

How could we make Holy Week special?  My husband cannot make the 3 p.m. Good Friday service as feeding time is 3:30 p.m.  There was no way either of us could take in the beautiful Holy Thursday ceremony then stay for a holy hour or two afterwards as we had for so many years before. 

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Centering Prayer, Contemplative Spirituality, Retreats
Contemplative Outreach South Africa: On Our Regional Retreat and the Passing of Nelson Mandela
Hilary Tyghe
Voices of Community

On the first night Brian, our co-ordinator, asked how each of us were. We all seemed to be in need of rest – both physically and spiritually. He gave us a question from the booklet - “what is of value to you in your life, and what is chaff?”  We would reflect on this in the privacy of our hermitage. We ended the evening with Lectio Divina.

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Centering Prayer, Spiritual Journey, Retreats
On the 30th Anniversary of Contemplative Outreach
Tilden Edwards
Voices of Community Read More. Spiritual Journey, Father Thomas Keating
Proof of God’s Existence? Or the Experience of God’s Presence?
The Rev. Hampton Deck
Voices of Community

When I was a junior in high school I took a class on world literature... One day {a classmate} asked me, “Why are you always bring Jesus and the Bible into our discussions?”  A little stunned, I replied, “Because I’m a Christian. Aren’t you?” “No,” he answered.  “Well what are you then? Jewish, or some other religion?” I asked. “No, my parents never took me to church. I guess I’m an atheist or an agnostic. I never really thought about it,” Chris replied. Then he asked me a question that stopped me cold: “Why do you believe all that crap anyway?”

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DYING and RESURRECTING IN CHRIST
Debbie Gervickas
Voices of Community

In gratitude for all of what Thomas Keating and Contemplative Outreach has done in supporting my spiritual growth...
 

My meditation began with use of the symbol of a cross: My finger began at my lips to trace down a center line of my body forming the vertical line of the cross. Each outward breath, soft S sound, invited release of physical form and spiritual blockages. 

 

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Contemplative Spirituality, Spiritual Journey
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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Holy Manure
Gregor Sneddon
Voices of Community

This homily was delivered on March 2, 2013, at the Sunday Eucharist concluding a 4-day Silent Retreat on Contemplative Living with Mary Dwyer in Arnprior, Ontario, Canada.

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Contemplative Spirituality, Spiritual Journey, Father Thomas Keating
Centering Prayer: A Closer Walk with Our God
Fr. Matthew J. Flatley
Voices of Community

... And so I began the journey in earnest.  The more I prayed this way, the more I wanted to pray.  I love a reflection attributed to The Little Flower, Thérèse of Lisieux, who observes, “Jesus teaches me in my heart without the noise of words.”  This was my experience.  As Catherine of Siena instructs, “Build yourself a cell in your heart and retire there to pray.”  I did just this, as a twice daily practice, and I soon went from believing to knowing. 

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Centering Prayer, Father Thomas Keating
The Story of My Surrender
Grace Sutherland
Voices of Community

 

In his book, Invitation To Love, Thomas Keating writes:

"On the spiritual Journey there is usually someone in our family, our business or in our community whom we cannot endure, someone who has a genius for bringing out the worst in us. No matter what we do we cannot seem to improve the relationship.

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Centering Prayer, Spiritual Journey
Set Free from the Pit, by Centering Prayer and the Truth
JB
Voices of Community

I was overwhelmed by constant, intense, thoughts and feelings of fear.  At the time, I believed that if I was just ‘right with God’, or, became a ‘better Christian’, these worrisome and fearful thoughts would certainly disappear.  So, I tried harder.  I purchased more spiritual books, attended more worship services, and prayed more frequently.  I was living a devout/religious life.  But, the fearful/condemning thoughts, along with their corresponding bodily feelings, just further intensified. 

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Centering Prayer, Spiritual Journey
Reflections on the September Conference
John Kelsey
Voices of Community

There is a new and powerful movement of the Spirit in our community.  We are evolving toward a new level of consciousness – not only as individual practitioners, but as a contemplative community.  Our challenge is to let go of a business model of governance and allow a new framework of attitudes and practices to blossom in its place.

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Centering Prayer, Contemplative Spirituality
No words are needed
Linda Altritt
Voices of Community

The past two years my family has endured a devastating loss with the passing of my beloved sister. . .

One of the members of my prayer group inspired me to write about Centering Prayer.    

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Centering Prayer, The Practice of Contemplative Living
Challenge
Jan Jett
Voices of Community

Having just struggled with my 80th birthday, I resonated with Fr Arico's challenge in the June 2015 CO NEWS:

     Challenge

To BE and not to DO

Experiencing age
Challenge to be and not to do
Against my program...

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Centering Prayer, Contemplative Spirituality, Spiritual Journey
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
In Memory of Mary Mrozowski Voices of Community

In honor of the 20th anniversary of Mary’s death, a blog has been set-up for those who wish to celebrate Mary’s contribution to the contemplative dimension of life by sharing their memories, prayers and photographs with the greater community. 

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Centering Prayer, Lectio Divina, Welcoming Prayer, Contemplative Spirituality, Spiritual Journey, The Practice of Contemplative Living
The Crooked Keel
Paul Wishart
Voices of Community

I loved to go lobster fishing with my uncle. I loved being out on the open water; the fresh sea air, the confident growl of the engine, the lobster boat churning through the waves....

I’ve taken this story along with me for many years since I read it in that group. I’ve shared it in situations where it proved supportive for people dealing with difficult circumstances, such as the loss of a close family member or friend.

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Centering Prayer, Lectio Divina, Contemplative Spirituality
Presence in the Silence
Niamh Brennan
Voices of Community

I had been working as a hospital chaplain for just a few months, when one morning I visited a patient (let’s call her Joan) who was due to have complicated cardiac surgery later that morning. The moment I entered her private room I realised that she was consumed by anxiety.

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Centering Prayer, Heartfulness, Contemplative Spirituality
Facilitating a Centering Prayer Support Group
Mary Mrozowski
Voices of Community

Facilitating is a ministry that empowers people and enables group process. As a ministry, it helps groups members to become more aware and more loving. Empowering others in this way is the heart of Christian ministry.

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Centering Prayer, Spiritual Journey
Discovering Centering Prayer in New Mexico
Denise Tierney
Voices of Community

It is Autumn. As I make the daily drive North from Rio Rancho to Santa Fe I am aware that Brother Sun rises later and later. No matter how many times I make this drive I am continually amazed at the beauty of the rolling hills . . .

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Centering Prayer
Contemplative Hospitality
Robin Gates, M.A.
Voices of Community

Hospitality

     In contemplative consciousness, one is equipoised, in balance, at the center of one’s house welcoming what arises in quiet hospitality, free of prejudice and attempts to change, possess or reject.  In the silent interior, guests gather, are witnessed, and given respect, acknowledgement and clarity, as they birth into consciousness for healing and transformation.

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Centering Prayer, Welcoming Prayer, Contemplative Spirituality
Mysteries Like Love
Stephen M. Feely
Voices of Community

Reaching out,

there is no edge.

I can see forever,

with eyes of light...

 

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The Practice of Contemplative Living

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