Fr. Thomas Keating is a founding member and the spiritual guide of Contemplative Outreach, LTD. He has served on Contemplative Outreach’s Board of Trustees since the organization’s beginning and is currently serving as the Chairman of the Board. Fr. Keating is one of the principal architects and teachers of the Christian contemplative prayer movement and, in many ways, Contemplative Outreach is a manifestation of his longtime desire to contribute to the recovery of the contemplative dimension of Christianity. Fr. Keating’s interest in contemplative prayer began during his freshman year at Yale University in 1940 when he became aware of the Church’s history and of the writings of Christian mystics. Prompted by these studies and time spent in prayer and meditation, he experienced a profound realization that, on a spiritual level, the Scriptures call people to a personal relationship with God. Fr. Keating took this call to heart. He transferred to Fordham University in New York and, while waiting to be drafted for service in World War II, he received a deferment to enter seminary. Shortly after graduating from an accelerated program at Fordham, Fr. Keating entered an austere monastic community of the Trappist Order in Valley Falls, Rhode Island in…
Click on a location to view local information for centering prayer meetings. [toggle title=”Belfast” style=”normal”]Westcourt Centre, 8-30 Barrack Street. Contact Norma Dodds: Phone 028 9071 5463 Email: email@example.com[/toggle] [toggle title=”Dublin Northside” style=”normal”]Christ the King Church, Cabra, Dublin 7. (Tuesday Meeting 7.30pm) Contact Jim and Joanna Gallagher: Phone 01 838 2502 and Mobile 086 809 2144 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Marino Institute of Education, Griffith Avenue, Dublin 9. (Wednesday Meeting 8.00pm) Contact Freda Kenny: Mobile 087 127 2957 Email: email@example.com Our Lady Help of Christians Church, Navan Road, Dublin 7. (Monday Meeting 11.00am) Contact Peter Farrell: Mobile 087 653 2088 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Our Lady of Victories Church, Ballymun Road, Dublin 11. (Monday Meeting 8.00pm) Contact Denis Gleeson cfc: Mobile 087 994 4435 Email: email@example.com St. Vincent’s, Navan Road, Dublin 7. (Wednesday Meeting 8.00pm) Contact Mary Bradley: Mobile 086 372 2153 [/toggle] [toggle title=”Dublin Southside” style=”normal”]Orlagh Retreat Centre, Old Court Road, Dublin 16. (Wednesday Prayer 8.00-8.30pm and Sunday Prayer 10.00-10.30am) Contact: Phone 01 495 8190 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Sion Hill, Blackrock, Co. Dublin. (Wednesdays during summer at Divine Master, Stillorgan Road 10.00am) Contact Eileen Foley: Mobile 087 264 4790 Email: email@example.com [/toggle] [toggle title=”Glendalough” style=”normal”]Glendalough, Co. Wicklow (Thursday Meeting 8.00pm) Contact Geraldine Collins: Mobile: 087 798…
Introduction programmes are arranged at the following locations around the country. An introduction programme can be over a single day or sometimes over a Saturday and Sunday depending on the location. Contact the centre nearest to you for further details. If there is no centre near enough to you, one-off introductions can still be arranged to take place in your area if there is a suitable venue. [hr] The Resource Centre, Navan Road, Cabra, Dublin 7. Contact Fionnuala Quinn O.P. Mobile: 086 235 2299 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org St. Aidan’s Monastery, Ferns, Co. Wexford. Contact Anne McClean: Mobile 087 919 2902 Email: email@example.com Web: www.contemplativeoutreachireland.com Adult Education Centre, Sion Hill, Blackrock, Co. Dublin Contact Kathleen Moran O.P: Phone 01 288 6831 or 01 288 2075 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Emmaus Retreat Centre, Swords, Co. Dublin Contact Denis Gleeson cfc: 087 994 4435 Email: email@example.com Web: http://web.me.com/gleesondenis Christ the King Church, Cabra, Dublin 7. Contact Jim and Joanna Gallagher: Phone 01 838 2502 and Mobile 086 809 2144 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Glendalough, Co. Wicklow Contact Geraldine Collins: Mobile: 087 798 7932 Email: email@example.com Blessed Trinity Cathedral, Waterford City. Contact Lesley Kavanagh: Mobile 087 238 6237 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Carrick-on-Suir Parish Church, Co. Tipperary Contact Rose Murphy rsm:…
[quote]In a retreat setting the length of the periods of Centering Prayer are extended… Lengthening or multiplying the periods of Centering Prayer can help to deepen the experience of interior silence…we are perfectly capable of an extended period of resting in God, especially with the support of a group. – Thomas Keating Open Mind Open Heart[/quote] Retreat Houses that offer Centering Prayer Retreats: St. Aidan’s, Ferns, Co. Wexford www.contemplativeoutreachireland.ie Star of the Sea Retreat House, Mullaghmor, Co. Sligo www.staroftheseacentre.ie Emmaus Retreat Centre, Swords, Co. Dublin www.emmauscentre.ie
Contemplative practices facilitate and deepen our relationship with God. They are an opportunity to invite the Indwelling Presence into everything we do. Contemplative practices give us the eyes to see and the ears to hear God calling us to the banquet. Centering Prayer Centering Prayer is a method of silent prayer that prepares us to receive the gift of contemplative prayer, prayer in which we experience God’s presence within us, closer than breathing, closer than thinking, closer than consciousness itself. This method of prayer is both a relationship with God and a discipline to foster that relationship. Centering Prayer is not meant to replace other kinds of prayer. Rather, it adds depth of meaning to all prayer and facilitates the movement from more active modes of prayer — verbal, mental or affective prayer — into a receptive prayer of resting in God. Centering Prayer emphasizes prayer as a personal relationship with God and as a movement beyond conversation with Christ to communion with Him. The source of Centering Prayer, as in all methods leading to contemplative prayer, is the Indwelling Trinity: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. The focus of Centering Prayer is the deepening of our relationship with the living…
“The Cloud of Unknowing” (Classic 14th Century text upon which Centering Prayer is based) “Open Heart Open Mind” by Thomas Keating (Continuum Publishing) – a modern classic. There are also other works by Thomas Keating. “Centering Prayer and Inner Awakening” by Cynthia Bourgeault (Cowley Publications) – an excellent book. “Centering Prayer and the Healing of the Unconscious” by Murchadh O’ Madagáin (Lantern Books) – a recent academic work. “Praying Our Experiences” Joseph F. Schmidt (Saint Mary’s Press) – a beautiful little book on prayer in everyday life. “The Practice of Prayer” Margaret Guenther (Cowley Publications) – very useful and readable overview of many different approaches to prayer. “A New Earth” Eckhart Tolle (Penguin) – Recent best seller on a contemplative approach to life which is available in any bookstore.
History in Ireland
Contemplative Outreach began at St. Aidan’s Monastery, Ferns, Co. Wexford in 1995. Fr. Thomas Keating had visited the monastery the previous year and invited Sr. Dolores and Fr. Tom Dalton to visit him in Snowmass in Colorado. From that visit to Snowmass sprang the Contemplative Outreach movement in Ireland with introductions to centering prayer and centering prayer retreats being sponsored by St. Aidan’s. By 2007 Sr. Fionnuala Quinn O.P. had opened Contemplative Outreach in Dublin at the Dominican Resource Centre in Cabra. Again, introductions to Centering Prayer, Centering Prayer Retreats and regular support days were offered. In 2008, Sr. Fionnuala also started teaching Centering Prayer and the Spiritual Journey Continuation Programme at the Adult Education Centre, Sion Hill, Blackrock, Co. Dublin. She assisted by Sr. Blanaid Gallagher O.P. The movement flowered and by 2010 other places of Centering had opened in Dublin and around the country. When the first Servant Leaders (Presenters of the Introductory Programme) had been trained, Contemplative Outreach in Ireland was well under way and the Spirit continues to move the work forward.
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Contact: Sr. Fionnuala Quinn O.P.
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