November e-bulletin

Alfred Delp, Advent of the Heart, Seasonal Sermons and Prison Writings


Christ was placed in the full human condition that we experience without being able to do much about it. It is an extraordinary expression of love. In other words, when you join me in descending into hell, you help release the prisoners of the consequences of their unevolved situation. Just as the immune cells heal the diseased cells that are there, so to be a living cell in the Body of Christ is to have the same disposition of total self-giving or self-surrender, including the willingness to suffer our slice of the human condition for the love of God and the healing of humanity.

We are accountable to everybody else. What you do, I do. What you are doing, your virtue, I can claim. I can also burden you with my vices. Everything is in common.

Thomas Keating, “Redemption,” God is All in All



Special Event


A free event with meditation sponsored by
World Community for Christian Meditation (WCCM)
November 26, 2023, via Zoom

3:00pm – 5:00pm CET (UTC +1), 9am EST (UTC -5)
use this time zone converter


Fr. Laurence Freeman OSB, says this about the event: “The news and images of human pain created by inhumanity in Gaza and Ukraine understandably outrage, sicken and depress us. But, like the illness of one body when it is undergone in community, the ordeal of these two places – and so many others – can illuminate the One Body we belong to. That becomes the source of hope and of our hunger and thirst for justice and peace.

“Because of the mystery of oneness revealed in suffering, please join me on online on Sunday 26 November. [We] will convene a community of love in solidarity with those desperately struggling in Ukraine and Gaza and also in extreme loneliness on the streets of our cities, in hospitals and prisons. May we celebrate the healing that comes when we see the grace of oneness revealed.”

For more information on the schedule and to register, go here. 


You can read this months bulletin at

October e-bulletin


The Second Consent of Centering Prayer: Interior Silence )

” … [This is a] movement beyond the ordinary realms of thinking and judging and commenting and reflecting, and if all the other thoughts dissolve there still is the thought that I have no thoughts. So, the ‘I’ thought is the last bastion of the ego self. … So … the interior silence is capable of changing as practice deepens and it changes by becoming deeper so that at some point in that second consent to interior silence one morphs into presence …”

Thomas Keating
“The Second Consent of Centering Prayer: Interior Silence”

(You can find the English and Spanish transcripts of this segment here. This segment is part of the weekly series shared on the home page of the website.)

October 25 is the fifth anniversary of Fr. Thomas’ death.




Some useful  YouTube links

The Contemplative Outreach YouTube channel offers a treasure of free videos of shorter and longer lengths. 

Recently added: 

In this month of October, when we remember that five years ago Fr. Thomas and Abbot Joseph Boyle passed on, their talks from the 2006 Annual Conference are now on YouTube. Transformative Listening is the topic:

The Dimensions of Listening, Abbot Joseph Boyle (29 minutes)

The Consequences of Listening: Thomas Keating on his “Encounter Group” Experience in the Sixties (17 minutes and quite funny at times!)

Panel Discussion; Gail Fitzpatrick Hopler, Thomas Keating, Joseph Boyle (23 minutes)


You can view the complete bulletin at

Workshop. Do you seek the still,quiet voice of God.


Do you seek the still,quiet voice of God.

This workshop will help us to understand the Presence of God within each of us
and our intimate relationship with that Presence.
A simple meditation practice known as Centering Prayer will be introduced as a method
to help us “rest in God”
We will experience two periods of Centering Prayer practice during the day,
and also explore the benefits of Centering Prayer in ordinary life.
All are welcome to attend – those new to Centering Prayer and those re-viewing
the method.
The program will be presented in:
The Cherith Pastoral Center, Church of St Columbanus,
by Finbarr O’Leary and Conor Crowley;
Commissioned Presenters of Centering Prayer
Saturday September 30th
Saturday October 7th
10am – 2.30pm
(Please bring your own lunch – Tea/Coffee will be available)
Cost €20 per person
To book a place, please contact Teresa in the Parish Office
(Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday 8.30am-2pm

Tel. 012824085
Contemplative Outreach Dublin

2023 July E-bulletin

“One advantage that Centering Prayer offers is that it establishes the letting go of self, the total sacrifice of ourselves, as the orientation and direction that grows along with our relationship with God. But, sacrifice in this world is not like it is in Heaven. It can be very difficult, very painful, even unbearable at times. All kinds of difficulties can arise, both socially and emotionally, and spiritually. Faith believes that whatever happens in the present moment is God’s will, and the only thing God can will is what is for our greatest good. By letting go of our doubts and turning them over to God, the presence of God begins to grow even in the midst of activity and adversity.”

Thomas Keating
“The Present Moment and All That Is”

That We May Be One: Christian Non-Duality



Q: Can I practice Centering Prayer as my main prayer (morning and afternoon) and during the day practice the Jesus prayer? Am I using two practices with different meanings and therefore leading my spiritual path in two directions? I also do Welcoming Prayer during the day. Should I choose between the Welcoming Prayer and the Jesus prayer?





A: Read Leslee’s response here.


You can read the complete bulletin at

June e-bulletin

Nicholas Roerich, Behest of the Sky, 1915


“Suppose you’re in mythic membership consciousness and totally absorbed in your particular belief system. Remember belief systems are the effort of people who haven’t had the experience to explain the founder’s experience of the Ultimate Reality. Most religions begin by some gigantic experience of someone or some group of people and then after a generation the others—the disciples or the students—try to put it in writing in order to preserve it. Actually, they’re at high risk of ruining it because they’ll put down their perspective of the experience which is likely to be not quite the same as the person who had it first. But that doesn’t mean that religion doesn’t continue to evolve, but it has limitations. So to treat it as the last word on every subject is to misunderstand its purpose … 

Thomas Keating
Gifts for Living video excerpt


Q: I’m a practitioner of “A Course in Miracles” and other non-religious pathways. Can I or anyone that is not a traditional Christian practice Centering Prayer? Is Centering Prayer for anyone who has a sincere desire to find God regardless of their tradition or non-tradition?

A: Read Lindsay’s response here.      







You can read the complete bulletin at

May e-bulletin

Om Lotus Tibetan Mandala, hand painted in Kathmandu, Nepal
The Word of God, named Jesus (Savior) by divine command, was active before the incarnation. The Word and its activity is not limited by the historical reality of the man Jesus, whose humanity it possessed. The Eternal Word may have manifested in other persons, such as Krishna, Laozi, Buddha, Muhammad, and in the teachings of the Absolute in Buddhism, the Upanishads, Advaita Vedanta, and other experiences of the divine. These were channels of bringing Divine Love into the world.”

Thomas Keating
Reflections on The Unknowable


Q: I’ve been practising Centering Prayer for many years now and I still get very distracted and my mind is very busy and I rarely feel rested at the end. I realise that feeling peaceful is not the ultimate goal but I’m wondering if others feel the same way. I feel discouraged at times to continue and I don’t always keep to the same mantra. Can you offer any thoughts to encourage me to continue?

A: Read Leslee’s response here.


You can read the complete bulletin at

Upcoming retreats 2023

Centering Prayer Retreats – Contemplative Outreach Dublin 2023

Mercy International Centre, Baggot Street, Dubin

Sunday – Friday, August 20 – 25, 2023


This five-day retreat will provide a contemplative space to centre yourself in prayer and explore a call to deeper listening. This silent method of meditation will lead participants on a journey of connectedness to Catherine. The retreat will include time in Catherine’s house at Baggot Street, and access to spiritual direction.

Residential: €575 (Accommodation & all meals provided) Non-residential : €290 (Lunch provided)

Presented by Fionnuala Quinn O.P. and Suzanne Ryder RSM

Commissioned presenters of Contemplative Outreach Ltd.

Please book directly with Mercy International Centre, 64 Baggot Lane, Dublin 4.

Email: Phone: + 353 (1) 661 8061


Dromantine Conference Centre, 96 Glen Road, Newry BT 34 IRH, U.K.

6:00 p.m Friday October 13th – 2:00 p.m. Sunday, Oct 15th, 2023 .

Introductory Retreat – Centering Prayer

Presentations during this introduction will address Prayer as a Relationship; The Method of Centering Prayer; Use of the Sacred Word and the Deepening of the Relationship with God.  This introduction to Centering follows a method taught by the late Fr. Thomas Keating, a Trappist monk.

Presented by Denis Gleeson cfc and Fionnuala Quinn O.P

Commissioned presenters of Contemplative Outreach Ltd.

Cost: €250 /£220

Please book directly with Dromantine. Phone: +44 2830821964 



Kylemore Abbey, Connemara

Friday – Sunday, November 17 – 19, 2023

A silent Centering Prayer, presenting the teachings of Thomas Keating OCSO.

The retreat will include times of prayer with the Benedictine Community

and Lectio Divina.

Presented by Fionnuala Quinn O.P. and Lesley O’Connor

Commissioned presenters of Contemplative Outreach Ltd.

Cost: €200 for 2 nights, 3 days includes accommodation, meals and sessions.

Please book directly with Kylemore Abbey. Email: Phone +353 9541815


April e-bulletin

Vela Zanetti, Mural of Human Rights. Emblem Un (detail), 1953

           Seekers are people of faith even if they do not belong to a particular religion. Faith in this sense is deeper than one’s belief system. Belief systems belong to the level of pluralism; faith to the level of unity. Faith is constitutive of human nature itself. It is openness to Ultimate Mystery before It is broken down into various belief systems. It is the acceptance of authentic living with all its creativity and the acceptance of dying with its potential for a greater fullness of life. The experience of the transcendent dimension in oneself is an expression of this fundamental faith at work.

One aspect of the search for Ultimate Mystery requires special emphasis today. I refer to Its identification with other human beings and with their needs, rights, and heartbreaks. The seeker must search for Ultimate Mystery not only in Itself, but also in Its manifestation in individual human beings, especially in those who are suffering unjustly. …

If seekers of Ultimate Mystery perceive themselves as citizens of the planet earth, then their first loyalty is to the human family as a whole. The particulars of race, nationalism, religion and culture can be transcended without reacting against them or trying to destroy them.

Thomas Keating
“Seekers of Ultimate Mystery,”
The Contemplative Outreach News, June 2010
(the full newsletter archive is here)



Q: I’ve been meditating for about 10 years every day three or four times for about 30 minutes each. I’ve practiced mantra and just sitting or Shikantaza,
Later on I’ve been doing Centering Prayer twice a day and Christian meditation per John Main. Can I practice both or should choose one? I really love the silence and resting in the presence of God.

A: Read Lindsay’s response here.





You can view the complete e-bulletin  at

2023 February e-bulletin

Hilma af Klint, What a Human Being Is, 1910


“Bonding with others takes place as the love of the Spirit is poured forth in our hearts. We feel that we belong to our community, to the human family, to the cosmos. We feel that our prayer is not just a privatized journey but is having a significant effect in the world. We can pour into the world the love that the Spirit gives us in prayer.”

Thomas Keating
Intimacy with God


Q: I’ve been practicing Zen meditation with a Christian group for 18 years. What is your view with respect to how Zen contemplation relates to Centering Prayer? The principles seem to be very similar. I ask because I’m trying to figure out the best next step for me to continue deepening in my contemplative prayer life. 

A: Read Joy’s response here





Join in Global Community
United in Prayer Day
March 3-4, 2023


In honor of Thomas Keating’s birthday (March 7) and dedicated to healing the suffering world.

Join in Centering Prayer in community hosted by local groups around the world. You may enter and leave as many times as you wish. Some people make it an at-home retreat day.

More information may be found here on the calendar, including the schedule.

The Zoom link to the event will be posted on the calendar
early in March.

If you are interested in facilitating prayer for an open time slot, please reply to this email.


You can read the complete e-bulletin at

December e-Bulletin

The Helix Nebula, NASA and Tommaso Stella


“God is manifesting in each moment as the human condition in each of us. … ‘We are icons of God.’ God experiences Godself in us and awakens God’s dispositions in us, especially humility, forgiveness and compassion. …

Christ lives in us means that Christ prays, acts, thinks, loves, suffers, and dies in us; and at the deepest level is our true Self. … Our precious days on earth -– the spiritual journey – are not primarily about us, or even about our transformation in Christ. They are about God taking over our lives in every detail. … Living daily life and the evolution of consciousness are … about God …. The goal is not just union, or even unity with God, but God incarnating in our humanity with all its circumstances.”

Thomas Keating
Reflections on the Unknowable



Q: I heard you share this quote: “The greatest experience of God is no experience of God” (Thomas Keating). This saying has me very confused.  My life has been filled with both giving and receiving love, including mercy and forgiveness, which to me is the experience of God in the my life. I’ve also been witness to the healing love of God in my life and many others. All of creation is the manifestation of God’s love, constantly pouring out, renewing, expanding and birthing more love. Please explain how this contradicts perhaps my false sense of God experience.

A: Read Fr. Carl’s response here




You can read the complete bulletin at