Monday, December 17, 2012

Sunday sermon in the wake of the Newtown massacre

My sermon for yesterday is up at my blog, Acts of Hope.

The direct link to the sermon, "Guns, Grief, and Gaudete: Sermon for the Third Sunday of Advent, after the Newtown Massacre," is here.

Monday, November 26, 2012

Waiting in the Night: Spirit and Struggle in Advent

Waiting in the Night:  
Spirit and Struggle in Advent
an online retreat  
December 1, 2012 to January 2, 2013

Registration is open now.

Waiting in the Night is an online spiritual retreat in the Christian tradition, accompanying your daily life during the season of Advent and the first week of the twelve days of Christmas. Advent, season of hope and prophecy, of expectant waiting, or visions both joyful and disturbing, is a difficult season for many. So is Christmas.  The holiday season from US Thanksgiving to New Year is particularly hard for those who suffer from depression, who are addicted and/or in recovery, who are grieving the loss of a loved one (a recent loss or an older one made more vivid by the season), who bear witness to the injustices in our world, and who are in the midst of endings and transitions.   

Waiting in the Night, designed especially for those who find this season difficult, will offer a gentle, supportive online space. Guidance in simple spiritual practices (among others, naming, listening, remembering, and imagining) will follow the rhythms and readings of the season of Advent in the Western Christian calendar; the retreat will continue into the first week of the twelve days of Christmas. Conversation will be part of the retreat, though participants who wish to remain quiet and private may do so. Together we will seek, hear,  and discern the presence of God in suffering, struggle, the unexpected, and acts of hope. 

Note: This retreat is not intended to substitute for psychotherapy or other professional clinical treatment, nor does it replace 12-step groups or other recovery programs. Its purpose is to offer spiritual and communal support and guidance. Take good care of yourself in this challenging season!


The retreat will move through Advent and into the Feast of the Nativity of Jesus (Christmas) with the help of the Sunday biblical readings from the Revised Common Lectionary and some of the major practices and commemorations of the season, including the feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe.

Spiritual practices for both prayer and daily living will anchor us as well as launch us, with God's help, into a future we can only begin to imagine. During our time together we will have a chance to practice (as we are able)  

committing acts of hope.


The retreat begins Saturday, December 1 (Vigil of the First Sunday of Advent) and runs through New Year's Day, till Wednesday, January 2. 

Though the retreat begins December 1, you are welcome to join any time from now until December 6.


Registration is open now and will remain open till Thursday, December 6. (If you feel you really need this retreat and it's after December 6, just write me.)

To register, write Jane Redmont at

Cost and payment     

Cost: $75
Payment: Payment is non-refundable and due upon registration, by check or money order.   
When you write Jane at to register, she will send you the mailing address.

An online retreat? How does that work?   

By offering the retreat resources (meditations, images, guidelines for spiritual practice, insights on prayer) online on a blog. More specifically, a closed blog.  

What's a closed blog? It's a blog like this, but open only to those whom the blog owner-administrator (in this case the retreat facilitator) allows in. In other words, it is not open to anybody wandering around the internet. Random web surfers will not be able to view either the blog or our conversations in the comments. Once you register for the course, I will send instructions on the one-time sign-in mechanism. After that, the retreat blog will always recognize you.

Do I have to talk to other people on the retreat? I'm a very private person.
 and/or Can I get some support here? I need to talk.

Jane's online retreats offer you a choice: it is up to you to find your preferred balance between the solitary and the communal, between privacy and solidarity. This retreat, more than others, is intended to be communal, since it is especially directed toward people who experience struggle or sorrow in this season and who need companions in the struggle -- and companions in hope. 

Conversation is part of the retreat experience. You can and may, however, remain private and just read the blog and use the practices and meditations on your own. Nobody will force you to speak. Use the retreat according to your personality and your circumstances. The retreat is like a room in which you are welcome to sit in the company of others and to be either visible or invisible.   

Begin where you are -- not where you "ought to be." God will meet you there.

Conversation on the retreat takes place via the comments on the blog posts of the retreat blog. Jane will be checking in every day.

Please be prepared to observe confidentiality and respect for other participants' diverse experiences and outlooks.
Facilitator and host   

Jane Redmont is the author of When in Doubt, Sing: Prayer in Daily Life. She is a spiritual director, retreat leader, pastoral worker, writer, and theologian who has worked in  campus, urban, and parish ministries. An Episcopal Christian, she was also formed in the Catholic tradition and has Jewish and Unitarian Universalist family roots, she has been involved in work for justice and ecumenical and interreligious relations all her life. She is a survivor of major depression and has three and a half decades of pastoral counseling experience. 

More on Jane Redmont here. 
Coming up in the new year: 
Two more online retreats!  See here.*
* Registration is already open for the first retreat, Hurry Up and Slow Down, which begins January 2.