Our eNews for this month: news and retreats
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Logo Contemplative Outreach Pittsburgh
eNews August 2023

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

"The spiritual life can only be lived in the present moment, in the now. All the great religious traditions insist upon this simple but difficult truth. When we go rushing ahead into the future or shrinking back into the past, we miss the man of God, which can only touch us in the now"  
Cynthia Bourgeault, Mystical Hope
From Victoria's Desk

     Longing for A Fall Retreat I am. To be with other like hearted folks who are bonded by our trust and faith in the prayer we share: Centering Prayer. Through it we transform the longing to belonging, through a created solidarity. We are truly blessed by all of you. The Pittsburgh Contemplative Outreach Service Team is planning for a Fall get-together. It will be “in-person” and “remote” participation. Currently we are honing our technology skills so we may provide a unified and inclusive experience for all participants. Look for more details in the September e-Newsletter. I am grateful to those who have shared their favorite memories of past Contemplative Outreach events, and we hope to create more.  

     Hardly much time for longing?  This Summer has been busy, with outdoor concerts, picnics, new movie releases, and managing extreme weather conditions. I am grateful for you, and my Centering Prayer Group, for the focus you provide to my life.  Having spent a little time this week reflecting on our fourth common virtue, solidarity, the words longing and belonging have been playing a delightful contention within my mind. Longing is common to the human heart and in belonging to this organic community of Contemplative Outreach, I find, longing is sated. This belonging is part of what Jesus conveyed at the Last Supper. When I find myself sharing a meal or hospitality with others, I think of that supper. The solidarity they shared through Jesus’ ministry, made the words “do this in memory of me” imperative.  And so too does the “Vision” of Contemplative Outreach.

     Our Chapter Summer of private prayer and reflections on silence, solitude, service and solidarity begs the opportunity for our continued purpose of sharing Centering Prayer. May the Holy Spirit bless our private yet connected discernment towards ways to do this. It is hoped that our next planned event this Fall will provide time to share our prayers and reflections and celebrate the movement of our communitarian purpose. I continue to pray for a model event that will attract young adults and adolescents to learn Centering Prayer. Once learned, it is such a simple way to turn towards God! It lends much needed rest and a peace like no other. The earlier in life to learn our Contemplative Outreach Model of teaching the better.

     Our continued commitment to the daily practice of Centering Prayer  provides the primary expression of belonging. This belonging illuminates our lives and the lives of others with divinely inspired purpose and actions. We consent to our basic core of goodness, to being part of the human family, to use our gifts and talents for our good and the good of others, and we consent to transformation and diminishment.  Our relationship with the living Christ is the bond uniting us together in mutual love (Theological Principle #8). Through the continuing practice of Centering Prayer, we experience deepening commitment to the needs and rights of each member of the human family and an increasing respect for the interdependence of all creation (Theological Principle #12). This note is inspired by an essay by (click) Gail Fitzpatrick and the Theological Principles of Contemplative Outreach.   

COP Summer Book Club:  Monday Evening ZOOM discussions of Cynthia Bourgeault’s, 2001s ninety-eight page gem, Mystical Hope will conclude by the end of this monthThe book can be purchased through Amazon in paperback or on Kindle. Should you not purchase the book, know that you will enjoy listening as others read.

We meet from 7:00-8 or 8:30 (as needed). Please email me at victoriae4copcenteringprayer@gmail.com .  I will send you the ZOOM Invite the Sunday before each  meeting.  
COP News
  • "A Gift of Life" - COP Monthly Enrichment Program starting in September (see below)
  • COP is looking for a new service team members, including treasurer. If you are interested in serving Contemplative Outreach, please contact us at info@pghcenteringprayer.org
  • COP Summer Book Club: will conclude by the end of this month. We are reading Cynthia Bourgeault's "Mystical Hope."  see above for more information

COP Free Monthly  Zoom Enrichment Program starting this Fall 2023   -  
 September till April
  The Gift of Life  -  Death & Dying , Life & Living     Thomas Keating with Carl Arico 
                                        Facilitated by Mary Broglie and Ruth Hofmann 
The Gift of Life: Death & Dying, Life & Living offers a vision of hope and a view of reality that counter the cultural norms that view death as a tragedy, or the end of living, or an entry into harsh judgment and retribution.  Fr. Keating focuses on the transformative process of death and dying as part of, rather than the end of, life’s journey.          The dying process is the culmination or the peak of the whole development of the         spiritual journey in which the total surrender into God involves the gift of life itself as we know it.

Centering Prayer, when it reaches the full consent to our nothingness, is the perfect preparation for death, because it is death - death of the false self and even the True Self has been transcended. 

          The evenings will include:

          Centering Prayer-  20 minutes 
          1 Video Segment -   Segments are 15 - 20 minutes long 
          Group Reflection and Sharing 

          Dates of the Program:  Monday's on the following dates from 7:00PM - 8:30PM 

          September 18 
          October 2 & 23
          November 6
          December 4
          January 8
          February 5
          March 4
          April 8    

Registration is required  -  Please email Mary -   mjbroglie@gmail.com  to register or to ask questions about the program

This video provides an introduction to the series:
Upcoming Events and Retreats
Summer Retreats at Bethany Retreat Center 
5 Day Centering Prayer Retreat
  • August 13 - 18
  • Presenter: Sr. Ruth Ann Madera
This 5 Day Retreat will be an in-depth retreat for those experienced in Centering Prayer.  The retreat will facilitate entrance into a more profound level of spiritual practice in an atmosphere of silence, solitude, and community with an opportunity to spend extended time in deep silence in community to encourage a more intimate union with God.  An existing Centering Prayer practice is a prerequisite for attending this retreat. We will be using the series by Thomas Keating, GOD is LOVE, The Heart of all Creation.

More information and registration: click HERE 
Dr. Jan Satterlee image
The Grieving Spirit - A Series
  • Various dates throughout 2023
  • Fourth session: August 22 
  • 9:00am to 3:00pm, lunch included
  • Facilitator: Dr. Jan Satterlee 
Session 4: August 22 

The Confusion and Sorrow When Drug and Alcohol Use Ends the Life of a Loved One
Drug and alcohol abuse is hard to understand and carries a certain unfair stigma. When it causes the death of a loved one, there can be a wide range of unwanted emotions like anger, shame, embarrassment, and confusion. In this session all are encouraged to bring their questions and concerns, while also to share stories, talk about the pitfalls of expectations and ways to handle the well-meaning opinions and advice from others.
For more information and registration, click HERE
Love, Marriage and the Holy Spirit, a Celebration: Couples Retreat
September 8 to 9, 2023

Facilitators: Dr. Janet and Deacon Dan Satterlee

Love is the foundation of a good marriage. It’s the binding factor that keeps a marriage intact. Human love is also one of the most difficult aspects to define, develop, and maintain. As fallible human beings, we tend to fall in and out of love at the drop of a hat. We often put conditions on love, test it, withhold it, and weaponize it.
On the other hand, God’s love is perfect. It’s unconditional, reliable, merciful, stable, and it remains.
When we invite God into our marriages, we are given the grace to love our spouses with a love that transcends the fragility of human love because it is strengthened by the perfect love of God.
In this workshop, through lectures, group discussion, and personal reflection, we will explore various aspects of love and marriage including the definition of love, how we talk ourselves into and out of love, the difference between immature and mature love, and how to know when we are being loved. We will also discover the graces that we can receive when we fully commit to inviting the Holy Spirit into the marriage. And finally we will culminate the retreat with a prayer of promise and blessing by Deacon Dan.

Offering: $400.00 per couple
Deposit: $150.00
For more information call 814-263-4855 or email bethanyretreatcenter@gmail.com
To register go to www.bethanyretreatcenter.org

 Online Events
Contemplative Outreach Hawaii
Online Half Day Centering Prayer/Welcoming Prayer mini-retreat
1st Saturday of every month)

Next: September 2 @ 3:00 pm – 5:30 pm FREE
First Saturdays online retreats are a special time where we explore our Centering Prayer practice. We are looking forward to sharing Physio-Divina (Moving) practices, Visio-Divina (visual-Art) practices, Terra-Divna (Nature) Lectio-Divina (Sacred Text) practices in addition to the Centering Prayer and Welcoming Prayer practice that are our foundation. Pulelehua, Liedeke, and Margie welcome who wish to join us.

We hope you will join us from wherever & whenever you are! Schedule in Hawai’i Time (UTC -10)

8:45am Room open to for early connections;
9:00 Welcome and introductions;
9:15 Centering Prayer;
9:45 Welcoming Prayer;
10:05 Centering Prayer;
10:35 Break;
10:45 Centering Prayer Reframing our Views of God
11:15-11:30 Closing prayer

https://us02web.zoom.us/j/92185854158?pwd=dDJxN0FkRkRvQWhrQURwN29SUTBFUT09Zoom Meeting ID: 921 8585 4158 Passcode: 730086
Dates 2023 (the zoom link is the same for all these dates): September 2, October 7, November 4, December 2
Website: http://www.cohawaii.org Phone (628) 400-2644 Email: cohawaii@gmail.com

All session are freely offered, donations are welcome, no registration is needed.
The Welcoming Prayer:
Adding a second engine to YourCentering Prayer Practice

An online contemplative mini-retreat
August 12, 10:00 am - 11:30 am
  • Presented by Logan Jones
  • $15 donation suggested
  • Information and Registration: click HERE
Explore the Welcoming Prayer as a practice and method of consenting to the Divine Indwelling’s presence and action in our physical and emotional reactions to events and situations in daily life.If Centering Prayer (or another prayer or meditative practice) is practiced for 40 to sixty minutes daily, this is for the other 23 hours!In this mini-retreat we'll explore the ways the Welcoming Prayer can be used in daily life with a special emphasis on how it helps us let go of and dismantle the false self and its over-identification with the culture and social values that we grew up in. This prayer practice helps us let go of our egocentric desires for ever more symbols of

  • security
  • affection-esteem
  • power-control

We'll explore this in the context of the human condition and will include time for both Centering and Welcoming Prayer during our session.

2023 Contemplative Prayer Summit
a two-day online retreat

September 23 - September 24
Join the Contemplative Prayer Summit, dedicated to deepening your spiritual practice. Unite with others in exploring the interplay of prayer and meditation, as we embark on a shared journey of spiritual growth and personal discovery.Join us as we explore:
  • Lessons from spiritual teachers who offer fresh perspectives on prayer & contemplation
  • The lives and teachings of people like Thomas Merton, Ilia Delio, Thich Nhat Hanh and more
  • The intersection of activism & the spiritual life through engaged contemplation
  • Practical ways of enhancing your daily prayer and meditation practice
  • How to weave mindfulness into your everyday life, cultivating peace & resilience amidst life's challenges
  • Prayer from an interspiritual approach with contemplative teachers from variious world traditions, embracing the shared wisdom of different contemplative practices
  • The body's sacred role in your contemplative life & practice

  • early-bird $99
  • Information and Registration: click HERE
Upcoming Centering Prayer In-person Retreats and Intensives
Holy Cross Monastery, New York:

8-day Post-Intensive Centering Prayer Retreat

September 12 - September 19
The eight-Day Centering Prayer Post-Intensive Retreat offered from Tuesday, September 12 to Tuesday, September 19, 2023, provides an opportunity to deepen the practice of Centering Prayer in an atmosphere of profound silence and community support. This retreat follows the Contemplative Outreach guidelines for the Post-Intensive Retreat including seven 30-minute Centering Prayer periods daily. Most days are spent in grand silence, when all are asked not to speak or make eye contact. Retreat leaders are available for soul-friending. During the retreat, one will experience integrating contemplation and action through silence, solitude, community and the rhythm of this Episcopal Benedictine monastic community’s worship and prayer life including daily Holy Eucharist. An established practice of Centering Prayer of at least a year or more and past attendance at a Contemplative Outreach Intensive Retreat is highly recommended.

Location: West Park, NY12493$1200Information and Registration: click HERE
Contemplative Outreach Greater Cincinnati and Northern Kentucky:

Manifesting God
A 4-day Silent Retreat

October 12 - October 15
"Silence is a great common denominator between people and also between us and God. God's first language is silence. Everything else is a poor translation. It is by entering into silence that we are best able to hear God."
Fr. Thomas Keating

This retreat offers two tracts: An in-depth experience of silent prayer (Track 2) for those who already have an established practice of Centering Prayer; Or an Introductory Workshop (Track 1) for those who are new to the journey. It is an opportunity for deeper union with God through communal sharing of silence and stillness. For those making their first silent retreat, Track 1 will offer periods of silent prayer as well as presentation and discussion of videos by Fr. Thomas Keating and recorded talks on "Healing our Violence through the Journey of Centering Prayer," by Fr. Thomas and Fr. Richard Rohr. The simultaneous Track 2, for those who have already completed an Intensive retreat, includes more periodsof silent prayer instead of the videos.

Location: Mt. St. Joseph Monastery, OH 45051  2 Tracks: Introductory or In-depth$ 250Information and Registration: click HERE
Contemplative Outreach of Maryland and Washington:
6-day Intensive & Post-Intensive

October 29 - November 3
The retreat will provide an opportunity to deepen one’s practice of Centering Prayer in an atmosphere of profound silence and community support. All participants observe silence from the opening to the closing of the retreat. The Intensive and Post Intensive tracks share the same schedule of several hours of group Centering Prayer daily, with one exception. The Intensive track includes a daily video with discussion of some of Thomas Keating’s teachings. If you are relatively new to Centering Prayer, have not previously attended a Centering Prayer retreat, or would like a refresher of some of the teachings, choose the Intensive track.

The retreat will be held at the Claggett Retreat Center in Adamston, Maryland. The Center is nestled in the rolling hills of Frederick County on 268 wooded acres with a working farm and fantastic views, yet only an hour’s drive from three international airports. Lodging will be in the Christiane Inn; a range of dietary needs can be accommodated. (For details and directions about the accommodation, visit: https://claggettcenter.org)

Location: Claggett Retreat Center, Adamstown, MD 217102 Tracks: Intensive and Post-Intensive$790Information and Registration: click HERE
Ongoing Programs and Resources
Logo COL Podcast
Opening Minds, Opening Hearts

This new podcast series from Contemplative Outreach is available on all podcast streaming platforms (Apple Music, Spotify, Amazon Music, Google Play) and on our
CO YouTube ChannelEach episode highlights Friends of Contemplative Outreach and their personal practice of Centering Prayer. You are invited to listen as our guests share insights about the teachings of Thomas Keating, how the practice impacts their work in the world and their thoughts about how Centering Prayer connects to the living traditions of contemplation and meditation.
Logo Word of the Week
Word of the Week

A free program offered by Contemplative Outreach.  A short message is sent each Sunday, which includes an image, Scripture, reflections and suggested practices followed by two weekly prayer groups for practice in community.
Spiral Staircase
Online Courses from Contemplative Outreach

Contemplative Outreach offers many online programs. Attending a workshop, a retreat, an online Centering Prayer group or participating in an online course with a global community is a great way of deepening one’s relationship with God and the experience of living a contemplative life. 
COP Resources: Books & Lending Library
Picture Desk with Notebook
Special Price on Books: Each for only $10 plus postage
  • Invitation to Love and Open Mind Open Heart by Father Keating
  • A taste of silence by Fr. Carl Arico
  • Too deep for words: Rediscovering Lectio Divina, with 500 scripture texts, by Thomas Hall
  • Centering Prayer and inner awakening by Cynthia Bourgeault
Lending Library
  • Click COP RESOURCES for a complete list of resources that can be borrowed from the COP library.
Please call or text your requests to Chris Volz at 412-779-8269 (you may leave a voice message) or send me an email at chrisvolzu@gmail.com.
For a complete list of the CO Theological Principles and Guidelines for Service, https://www.contemplativeoutreach.org/vision/.
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