Resources from Cynthia Bourgeault's November 8 - 14, 2019 Retreat held at Holy Family Retreat Center in West Hartford, CT

Hello Everyone,
     I hope you have been well and that you had a wonderful Thanksgiving Holiday!  It's so hard to believe that it's been just over two weeks since Cynthia's Retreat at Holy Family Retreat Center in West Hartford, CT concluded.

I hope you'll find the following resources useful and informative: You are part of our growing Christian Contemplative Experience community and I look forward to sharing you presence again at an upcoming CCE event.

Peace, Joy and Holiday Blessings,
                                         Mike Smoolca
                                         Coordinator, Christian Contemplative Experience
Material referenced in Cynthia's Presentation:
The weekend dealt mostly with Cynthia's insights into the method of Centering Prayer. This was augmented by Fr. Bill Sheehan's presentation of two 1-hour informal Centering Prayer Introductory workshops. Here are the slides from Fr. Bill's presentation.

In addition to her latest on the subject, the Heart of Centering Prayer, Cynthia also referenced her earlier book on the topic; Centering Prayer and Inner Awakening which also covers the Welcoming Prayer practice.
The week dealt mostly with the transition from false self to narrative self to witnessing self to no self as encountered by Fr. Thomas Keating. 

When we talked about no self, we reflected on the poems Fr. Thomas wrote that were collected in the book; The Secret Embrace which is currently available from Contemplative Outreach

We also shared the following video: Thomas Keating - A Life Surrendered to Love:
Other material that Cynthia mentioned that may be of interest:

The two important versions of the Cloud of Unknowing that Cynthia recommends:  Other books Cynthia referenced:
Material from other workshops
Sky on Day 2,Sky on Day 3,Sky on Day 4.- The Series of seven colored pencil drawings,Depicts the sky at the same time, when the setting Sun touches the horizon,Observed from the same location, the spinning, orbiting Earth,Every day for one week - Light, Space, Time, Motion drawings by Ildiko Viczian
Deborah Welsh's Dance of Divine Presence workshop Ildiko Viczian's Contemplative Moving workshop
Information on the Christian Contemplative Experience
The Christian Contemplative Experience at Holy Family began it's fourth season in September 2019. CCE seeks to affirm the oneness of all Christians and to transcend our outward differences by joining together in silent prayer. Our purpose is to provide a space where Christians can meet, share and pray together as Community in the contemplative tradition. 

From the beginning CCE has been informed by the principles, prayer practices and teachings of Contemplative Outreach, LTD, founded by Thomas Keating in 1984. It includes the methods of Lectio Divina, Centering Prayer and Welcoming Prayer, among others. We are also formally introducing the Wisdom teaching and methods of Cynthia Bourgeault and her International Wisdom network. This season we're also continuing to introducing recognized young Contemplative teachers and leaders featured at The New Contemplative Leaders Exchange.

You can download a full list of this season's programs. 

Upcoming programs of interest are:
  • Nancy Stimac and Mike Smoolca present an Advent Lectio Divina Workshop on Saturday, 12/14/2019
  • One of the New Contemplative Leaders, Rev. Mark Longhurst on the topic of James Baldwin, Contemplative Prophet of Love to be held on Saturday, 1/11/2020:  
  • We have a Contemplative Outreach formation program on The Dark Night of Spirit with Susan Komis, a Contemplative Outreach expert on the subject will be on Saturday, 2/1/2020:
  • For those of you who might be interested in Wisdom Formation, please consider our Wisdom School being held on April 23 - 26, 2020.
In addition, here's the link to the Contemplative Outreach of CT Chapter
Other Wisdom Resources:
Rev. Bill Redfield has been presenting Wisdom workshops as part of our Christian Contemplative Experience at Holy Family over the past 3 seasons. Bill's web site is:
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