of Phoenix yпЃ№ Contemplative Outreach Celebrating 30 years of Grace and Gratitude Dear Contemplative Outreach Community, During this banner year, Contemplative Outreach Ltd. is celebrating its first 30 years. As you may know, it took root during a 14 day intensive retreat in 1983 led by Fr. Thomas Keating at the Lama Foundation in San Cristobal, NM. Twelve people attended. Each of them played an essential role in taking the first steps to bring Centering Prayer to a wider community. In this newsletter, we look back at our own beginnings in Arizona. When one follows the promptings of the Holy Spirit, things don't turn out just as we imagine, do they? Sometimes obscure, always surprising and often amazing, our own history uniquely reflects each of us and our home location. Fall 2014 yпЃ№ workshops in our respective churches and meeting monthly to plan activities. Many of us attended 10 day Intensive Retreats in Snowmass, CO near St. Benedict's Monastery where we were exposed to Fr. Keating's Spiritual Journey tape series. National coordinator meetings and special "institutes" were offered by the national office to expand our understanding of the Christian contemplative heritage and the spiritual journey. There was wisdom in offering many opportunities to learn and deepen the prayer, as this practice is not easy to establish and sustain out in the modern world. How did you come to Centering Prayer? One of my greatest lifeвЂ™s blessings was to "stumble on" Fr. Thomas Keating introducing Centering Prayer as a path to greater intimacy with God. He had come to the Franciscan Renewal Center in 1991 to lead a weekend retreat. Within a few months of his talk a team of national faculty members followed up with a weeklong workshop to train presenters in the method and background of Centering Prayer (June 1992.) They were sowing the seeds and responding to grass-roots interest here and there throughout the nation. By 1998 we offered our first intensive retreat based on the Snowmass model at Santa Rita Abbey, the Trappistine Monastery in Sonoita, AZ. This began a rich history of intensive and postintensive retreats at Santa Rita, as well as a lovely Inside this Issue relationship with the Trappistine community. What Our Hearts We also held our first are Searching For 3 Formation for Contemplative Service Centering Prayer 4 workshop there in the late Small Groups 1990's. Bonnie Shimizu, Contact People 4 personal assistant to Fr. 5 T h o m a s , c a m e f r o m Intensive Retreats Snowmass to train new Remembering prayer presenters. AndrГ© R. Boulanger 6 The seeds fell on fertile and ready soil here in Phoenix. Several of us decided to begin the work of presenting and supporting Centering Prayer and Lectio Divina. A small group gathered to pray together and organize a local structure for introducing the prayer. We met in private homes. Community formed. Gloria Nelson and I stepped forward as the first Contemplative Outreach cocoordinators. We began offering introductory In 1999 our coordinating (or "core") group invited national faculty member Susan Komis to Phoenix to help structure us and clarify our vision. We were all volunteers with differing skills and constraints who needed to Announcements 6 -Entering the Mind of Christ -Exploring The Method of Centering: Prayer as an 11th Step Meditation Practice Exploring The Invitation of Jesus to: Prayer in SecretвЂќ 7 Centering Prayer Introductory Workshops 8 Contemplative Outreach of Phoenix learn to come to consensus. We sponsored Fr. Keating for a 2 day workshop at Sts. Simon and June in November of that year to an audience of around 400 people. Local prayer groups were taking root and we created a series of Facilitator Support Days, giving information on prayerful leadership, structure and use of resources. Our early coordinators included Ken Christopher, Kathleen Bischoff, Mary Leonard and John Corcoran (co-coordinators), Denice Caldwell and Jeannie Lashinske (co-coordinators), and Therese Wagner. Fall 2014 coordinating duties among those who regularly continued to meet. Bill Bailey perpetuated the Prayer, Soup and Bread Tuesdays in his own home. Silent Saturdays were beginning at St. Barnabas on the Desert in Paradise Valley. In the spring of 2008 we found space at Central United Methodist Church, where the "core" group continues to meet once a month and most of our special events are held. Our 2 or 3 annual intensive retreats continue to take place at Santa Rita Abbey retreat center. Every March we participate in the Annual United in Prayer Days spearheaded by the national office, and Between spring of 2002 and fall of 2006 we had each November we bring in a special speaker for a our own local retreat facility - the day of learning and inspiration. Our convent behind St. Agnes Church on guests have included Fr. Jim Clark, Fr. 24th Street and Oak Street - which we !" Carl Arico, Fr. John Auther, SJ, Rev. called The Cornerstone Center. Those Charlie Wehrley, C.Ss.R., Fr. William were "salad days!" An outpouring of Contemplative Service Sheehan OMI, Fr. Martin Laird OSA volunteers helped clean and appoint (twice), Fr. William Meninger OCSO , is God in us the retreat center with bedding, and Fr. Michael Fish OSB. cookware, fresh paint and fresh flowers. We shared the facility with serving God in others. During these years, prayer communities the World Community for Christian have rooted and grown in Prescott !" Meditation, an organization founded (where Robert Johnson is the by John Main OSB and later headed coordinator), Sedona and Flagstaff (led by Lawrence Freeman OSB. We by Rusty Swavely), and Tucson. At the created Silent Saturdays, Tuesday Evening Prayer, Franciscan Renewal Center and St. Barnabas on the Soup and Bread, residential retreats, days of Desert contemplative communities are thriving. enrichment and more. Fr. Jim Clark, Fr. William We are now able to run our own workshops for Sheehan OMI, Sr. Electa Havener OCD and others Presenter Formation (thanks to Rusty Swavely) and brought wisdom and insight. Fr. Keating returned we have created original programs such as our Mid in 2005 with Fr. Carl Arico, Marie Howard and Week Mini Silent Retreat. Due to the extensive and Gail Fitzpatrick-Hopler to celebrate Contemplative rock-solid skills of Sr. Rachel Torrez, our Outreach's 20th year. After each spoke at introductory workshops and new small groups have Cornerstone, Fr. Thomas led a prayer session and multiplied. She supports the presenters, ensures stimulating workshop at Trinity Episcopal that there is good follow-up, and serves as our Cathedral to a full capacity public audience. We event liaison to Central United Methodist Church. ended the weekend with an intimate fundraising Jeannie Lashinske has for many years been our dinner, relaxing with wine, good food and even gentle efficient treasurer. Kathleen Hibbets happily better stories! maintains our mailing and email lists. Dave and Tina M. anchor our connection to the recovery During the Cornerstone era there was another gift community and serve us with energy and to our evolving community. Some of our local generosity. Mary and Phil Leonard spearhead our leadership, including Dave D. became involved in a intensive retreats each year, cultivating new national program to make Centering Prayer leadership and laundering sheets and towels. accessible to those in 12 Step programs. Working Patrick Waugh is our faithful liaison to St. Barnabas closely with Fr. Keating (who regards the 12 Steps on the Desert. Anne Jacobson connects us to the as a monumental spiritual gift to the world) a Prescott community. So many others have given special training was created so that the prayer could generously of their talents and time, inspired by this be offered as an 11th Step option to those in life-giving prayer. recovery. This initiative has thrived and been fruitful. Our "leaderless leadership" structure is rare in Contemplative Outreach Ltd. but it has held strong After that, a challenging period of homelessness for 8 years. Within the coordinating group, the ensued, during which we began sharing members quietly take on responsibilities. A 2 Contemplative Outreach of Phoenix Fall 2014 different person volunteers to chair each monthly meeting. When a need arises, there is a response. Even the core members are often amazed at how things come together. You are warmly invited to attend one of our meetings - from 7-9 pm on the 4th Tuesday of the month at Central UMC. All are welcome! The programs, philosophy and organization of Contemplative Outreach Ltd. are what have kept this movement healthy and faithful to the prayer of listening. As part of a living network, I invite you to reflect on all the ways you have personally benefited from it. Let us acknowledge what makes up the genius of Contemplative Outreach. It surely includes: вЂў the wisdom to simplify a powerful prayer practice for modern, busy people yпЃ№ вЂў the practice of listening to the larger community and developing programs only in response to need вЂў the discernment to offer many supportive structures to sustain and deepen the prayer and develop servant leadership вЂў a model of minimal hierarchy and decentralization of leadership вЂў a commitment to the integrity of the practice, to keep it faithful and pure Contemplative Outreach is now a strong, deeply rooted Holy tree with branches all over the world. What a blessing and privilege here in Arizona to be part of this living structure, nourished by the living waters of Jesus Christ and flowing with the Holy Spirit in its veins. Thank you. Amen. Hallelujah. Kathy Kramer-Howe What Our Hearts are Searching For Personal Reflections on Living with Centering Prayer During this jubilee year honoring 30 years of Contemplative Outreach Ltd., we were invited to reflect on how this contemplative path has affected our lives. Here is a sampling of responses to the four questions recommended for reflection. Take a few minutes and seek your own responses. You will be rewarded! yпЃ№ How has Centering Prayer deepened your awareness of the love of God? How has this awareness been manifested in your daily life? Centering Prayer has deepened my awareness of the love of God from the inside out. The love of God through Centering Prayer is the Grand Paradox. The prayer has broken me open and poured me out while at the same time being the glue that holds me together. I know that I am known and loved by God, but it's a knowing that comes from the heart and not from the senses, or emotions or head. JL I try to manifest the love of God in my daily life by striving to be as present and engaged to all those that cross my path. I try to honor and acknowledge how the presence/love of God pours out from all people, creation, etc. at every moment, while at the same time being gentle-loving to myself and others when we stumble into forgetfulness and selfabsorption, only to try again in the next moment. JL Centering Prayer, the quiet prayer, the listening prayer, the prayer of surrender. This is the prayer of communion, the prayer of knowledge of the Love of God. By simply being in the presence of God I am aware of his Love. Centering Prayer is the prayer of being in God's presence. I cannot find words that describe God's love, but these are the words that describe how Centering Prayer has helped to deepen my awareness of this Love. GN The awareness of God's Love for me is helping in my relationship with others. I am more able to see His Love in other people. I am more at peace with the "stuff" that comes up in daily life and I am more able to "Let go and let God" be in charge. I am more at peace with who I am and my limitations. I am more able to respond to others with more love and compassion. GN Without silent, "centering" prayer, I am nothing. KH When I had a rare illness in 1998, Mary Leonard reached out to me and pulled me into Contemplative Outreach, though I had been 3 Contemplative Outreach of Phoenix Fall 2014 practicing contemplative prayer since I was quite young. As I recall that year, I can only be grateful for being saved from an incredible turmoil of suddenly ending my career when we needed the income for the last two college-bound children, health care lunacy, and a rebalancing of everything. I healed, the daughters completed college degrees, and life has been good! KH How did Contemplative Outreach Ltd help you or serve you? How was Contemplative Outreach an instrument to help you on your journey? Contemplative Outreach is the sole reason I found what my heart was searching for in Centering Prayer. Contemplative Outreach continues to feed me through the newsletter, books, programs, DVD's etc. that enrich and support my centering prayer practice while also providing me with a community in my area to connect and grow with. JL Contemplative Outreach Ltd helped with training, materials, and programs for spiritual growth. Without the guidance I would not have been able to share this contemplative path with others. The sharing with others was very instrumental in the growth of my own spiritual journey. GN Contemplative Outreach of Phoenix gave me a job! I have been keeping the database since 1999. I have assisted in leading a few retreats. Over the years I have attended many enriching talks and other events. KH How is Contemplative Outreach Ltd. important to the world today? Contemplative Outreach continues to be so important to the world by not only teaching the !" is a community of individuals and Centering Prayer groups committed to living the contemplative dimension of the Gospel in everyday life. !" Contemplative Outreach is important in the continuing growth of the prayer and living a life of love and peace. It seems that our world today, more than any other time, is in the need of Centering Prayer and the contemplative way of lifeвЂ¦ I am so very, very thankful that God allowed me to be part of Contemplative Outreach and the sharing of Centering Prayer. It is such a blessing to watch it grow and see how excited people are about this form of prayer and way of life. People "want" to share it with others. They "want" others to experience the blessings they are receiving. God bless us all. GN "Dance Lessons" "May I have this dance?" Asked the mysterious presence. "Oh, sir, I do not know the steps; I am young, with slight awareness." The strange attraction took her hand, Leading her gradually into a practice That grew from a polka of prayers, Into community squares, along with Footing through chores and challenges, Whirling in tangos with others, Jitter-bugging with mentors, to Cheek-to-cheek centering in silence. The Lord of the dance smiles, Twirling her into yet deeper peace. Kathleen Shannon Hibbets June 2014 Centering Prayer Small Groups Contemplative Outreach 4 method of Centering Prayer and all of the support resources, but by also being a means to wrap the world in the prayer and love of God. JL Theological Principle #1 The intent of Contemplative Outreach is to foster the process of transformation in Christ in one another through the practice of Centering Prayer. Most people find the small Centering Prayer Group a great support for their practice. Please see the website www.contemplativeoutreach-phoenix.org for locations, meeting dates and times, and contact people for each small group. Contact People The following may be contacted for information about Contemplative Outreach programs and meetings in their area. вЂў Rick & Kathy Kramer-Howe....Phoenix 602.955.6057 вЂў Robert Johnson.........................Prescott 928.717.2441 вЂў Phil and Mary Leonard.............Phoenix 480.966.7558 вЂў Rusty Swavely..........................Sedona 928.300.2949 Contemplative Outreach of Phoenix Fall 2014 Intensive Retreats - Silent Retreats - 2015 Santa Rita Abbey, Sonoita, AZ Contemplative Outreach of Phoenix offers 8 day, silent intensive retreats to those who are interested in renewing and deepening their relationship with God through Centering Prayer. The retreats take place in Sonoita, AZ at the Trappistine Monastery,* with a lovely setting on high desert terrain. There are seven single rooms; one room can accommodate two retreatants, if two people want to share. Each room has its own bath. The retreat food is vegetarian. *Check out the Santa Rita Abbey webpage: santaritaabbey.org Intensive Retreat: January 9th вЂ“ 17th The retreat is open to all who have a 6 month Centering Prayer practice. We will have 3 one hour prayer sessions daily and listen to 2 Fr. Thomas Keating Spiritual Journey DVDвЂ™S. Plus we will share in Lectio Divina. Also available is the opportunity to participate daily in Lauds, Liturgy (Communion Service) and Vespers with the Trappistine Sisters. There will be talking at the evening meal. Post-Intensive Retreat: January 30thвЂ“February 7th Pre-requisite: Must have attended an intensive retreat. This retreat consists of 4 one hour prayer sessions daily. There is time for individual quiet time: writing, sketching, walking, etc. We also share in the sistersвЂ™ prayers of: Lauds, Liturgy, Vespers and Compline. This is a totally silent retreat. Registration: Beginning September 1, 2014: Write, call or email Jeannie Lashinske at: 5728 E. Orange Blossom Ln Phoenix, AZ 85018 Phone: 602.619.1714 Email: [email protected] The retreat fee is $500.00. Scholarships are available. If you have a need, please talk to Jeannie Lashinske when you register. The shared room will be $425.00 each. A non-refundable $100.00 registration fee reserves your room. We expect that the remaining $400.00 will be paid in full by December 15th to Jeannie Lashinske. Please make out checks to Contemplative Outreach of Phoenix. Questions? Ask Jeannie or email Mary Leonard: [email protected] Please В Note В Retreat В Cancella/on: В В Last В year В for В various В reasons В we В had В several В cancella4ons В at В the В last В minute. В It В was В too В late В for В the В wai4ng В list В people В to В respond. В В We В need В 6 В retreatants. В В If В this В situa4on В should В arise В again, В we В have В made В the В following В arrangements В with В the В Sisters. В В Our В organized В retreat В will В be В cancelled В on В the В Monday В before В the В retreat В begins. В В В The В retreat В house В will В be В open В for В you В to В make В your В own В self-ВвЂђguided В retreat. В The В sisters В will В provide В food В for В you В to В prepare В on В your В own. В В The В cost В will В be В $35.00 В per В night. В В You В can В stay В for В the В 8 В nights, В if В you В wish, В or В for В a В shorter В period. В В This В is В a В cau4on; В it В is В unlikely В that В last В yearвЂ™s В diп¬ѓculty В will В happen В again. В 5 Contemplative Outreach of Phoenix Fall 2014 Remembering AndrГ© R. Boulanger A few months ago, Contemplative Outreach of Phoenix received a bequest of $5000 from the estate of AndrГ© Boulanger. For many years AndrГ© regularly prayed with the Wednesday morning group at St. Theresa's Convent in Phoenix. He received a "spiritual uplift" from the community prayer and sharing. After he retired in 2004, he volunteered 3 mornings a week at an HIV/AIDS Clinic and Research Center and wrote to express his goodbye's to the Wednesday group. He continued to pray for 30 minutes and do half an hour of lectio divina every day. Through the years, he donated anonymously to Contemplative Outreach of Phoenix when he could. AndrГ© died on February 14, 2013. He was born on June 23, 1935 in Manchester, New Hampshire and first came to Arizona in 1965 where he remained for the rest of his life. We remember him with gratitude and love, and believe that this quiet, generous, kind man is safe in the heart of Jesus. Thank you, AndrГ©, for blessing our community so generously. Upcoming Event in 2015 "Entering the Mind of Christ: Learning to Live a More Contemplative Way of Life" with James Finley PhD Saturday, March 14, 2015 one day conference St. Barnabas on the Desert 6715 N. Mockingbird Lane, Scottsdale, AZ 85253 Registration for this event will be available November 2014. For more details please visit www.saintbarnabas.org. Exploring вЂњThe Method of Centering PrayerвЂќ As an 11th Step Meditation Practice FRIDAY, NOVEMBER 14, 2014 7:00 P.M. to 9:00 P.M. First Congregational United Church of Christ 1407 N. 2nd St, Phoenix 85004 Seating is limited-Refreshments provided First Come First Serve вЂ“ Register now to reserve your place Voluntary Contributions Accepted Registration is simple Send an email to [email protected] or Call/text to 602.999.2736 Give your first name and last initial and say you will be there 6 Contemplative Outreach of Phoenix Fall 2014 EXPLORING THE INVITATION OF JESUS TO: вЂњPRAYER IN SECRETвЂќ Matthew 6:6 NOVEMBER 15, 2014 9:00 A.M. to 3:00 P.M. Central United Methodist Church 1875 N. Central Avenue, Phoenix 85004 Seating is limited-Lunch provided Parking in church lot AND North Corner of Phoenix Museum lot Father Bill Sheehan OMI has been involved with Contemplative Outreach from its inception. He has led Centering Prayer workshops for over two decades throughout the USA and abroad, and is a beloved retreat director. He has a rich background as a Pastor, Novice Director of Formation, Provincial, and Director of the Oblate House of Theology for the Missionary Oblates of Mary Immaculate (OMI). Father Sheehan will address the questions of вЂњhow do we access our inner room, and what begins to happen when we enter our inner room.вЂќ You do not want to miss this rich day. Suggested Donation $ 35.00. Make check to Contemplative Outreach of Phoenix Register at www.contemplativeoutreach-phoenix.org or mail registration to: Sister Rachel Torrez 8141 N. 16th Street #5 Phoenix, AZ 85020. Call 602.944.2728, or email [email protected] for information regarding scholarships. Name ________________________________________________________________________ Address ______________________________________________________________________ Phone _________________________________check for vegetarian lunch-Important___________ 7 Centering Prayer Introductory Workshops вќ§ Saturday October 25 2014 вќ§ вќ§ Saturday October 25 2014 вќ§ Good Shepherd of the Hills Episcopal Church 6502 East Cave Creek Road, Cave Creek, AZ 85331 9 am to 1 pm St Barnabas on the Desert Episcopal Church 6715 N. Mockingbird Lane, Scottsdale, AZ 85253 9:30 am to 3 pm To register contact Caroline Nagle at [email protected] or 480.488.3283. You can also contact Sr. M. Rachel Torrez at [email protected], or online at www.contemplativeoutreach-phoenix.org. To register contact Liza Bell at 602.527.6161 or [email protected] !" When you want to pray, go to your inner room, close the door, and pray to your Father in secret. And your Father who sees in secret will reward you. Matthew 6:6 Contemplative Outreach, LTD. 2622 E. Del Rio Dr Tempe, AZ 85282-4136 *Return Receipt Requested* www.contemplativeoutreach-phoenix.org !"
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