Friday, July 18, 2014

(Re-) discovering Howard Thurman: an online August retreat

Reminder: full list of online retreats for summer 2014 here.

Longing for some prayerful and reflective time in your busy life?

Interested in (re-)discovering the work of a wise guide?

Join us:
Howard Thurman: An Online Novena Retreat
August 4-12, 2014

Howard Thurman (1899-1981), a philosopher, educator, theologian, and pastor, was an African American born in the segregated South during the Jim Crow era. Nourished by the rich traditions of the Black Church and ordained as a Baptist minister, he was deeply influenced by Quaker thought, especially the mysticism and nonviolence of Rufus Jones. He was also a pioneer in interreligious understanding. His writings --books, prayers, meditations, and sermons-- are rooted in Christianity yet accessible to and pertinent to whose wisdom path is "spiritual but not religious."

Howard Thurman exercised a deep influence on some of the  Civil Rights Movement's leaders, including Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. He traveled to India to meet Gandhi in the 1930s with the first group of African Americans to do so. Thurman served as the first Black Dean of Marsh Chapel, the university chapel at Boston University, and founded the Church for the Fellowship of All Peoples, a multicultural, multiracial, and interfaith congregation in San Francisco which is still in existence today.

What, when, where

* An online nine-day spiritual retreat, August 4-12, 2014, with the help of the writings of Howard Thurman (1899-1981).

* Simple and accessible:
one quote per day
one spiritual exercise per day
one prayer per day
* At home, in your daily life: read, meditate, and pray in a way that suits your schedule.

* You'll need 20 minutes a day of focused time and a computer or tablet with internet access.

* $50 if you register (pay online or mail a check, see below) by Friday, July 25.

$60 if you register from July 26 to August 4.

Some discounts are available for those in financial hardship. Talk to me.

* Spiritual refreshment, nurture, and challenge.

"Novena retreat" ?

A novena is a sequence of nine successive days of prayer–usually prayers of either petition or thanksgiving. It is generally a public and popular spiritual practice and is found most often in the Roman Catholic religious tradition.

I am using the word “novena,” meaning nine days, as part of the description of this retreat to indicate that it is nine days long and involves daily meditation and prayer.

The novena retreat is ecumenical, accessible to Christians of any background or affiliation, and open to all. It is a new twist on the traditional novena.

An online retreat? How does that work?

* The retreat offers daily resources (the quotes, spiritual exercises, and prayers mentioned above, with some images as well to nourish you visually) online on a blog. More specifically, a closed blog.

* What's a closed blog? It's a blog like this, but it is not public: it is open only to those whom the blog owner-administrator (that's me) has signed in. In other words, it is not open to anybody wandering around the internet. It is not "searchable": random web surfers will not be able to view either the blog or our conversations in the comments.

* Once you register for the retreat, I will send instructions for the one-time-only sign-in mechanism. After that, the blog will always recognize you.

* Here's an article about online retreats in which I am quoted.


To register, write me, Jane Redmont, stating your intention to take the retreat, and make your payment. 

Cost and payment

* $50 if you register by Friday, July 25.
You may also take advantage of this discount (even if you register after July 25) if you are unemployed or if you are a student or retiree on limited resources. If cost is still a hardship with this discount, please write me.
* $60 if you register between July 26 and August 4, the day the retreat begins. (It's best to register before August 4, but you are still welcome if you sign up at the 11th hour!)

Payment is non-refundable and due upon registration, by check or online electronic payment.

If you prefer to pay by check, I will send you the mailing address when you write me to register.

If you prefer to pay online by credit card or PayPal, please click below to pay via the Redmont Retreats secure PayPal account. (Note: you don't have to have your own PayPal account to use this online payment method.)

Retreat fee (choose one)

Privacy and community

During the retreat, you can remain private and just read the blog and use the quotes, spiritual exercises, and prayers on your own.


If you are more extroverted and communal or in need of companions on your retreat, you can  share your thoughts, experiences, and questions via the comments function on the blog and engage in conversation with other retreatants and with the retreat facilitator.

July 18 only: discount on Dorothee Sölle online retreat!

Online retreat: nine days with Dorothee Sölle: see here for details. Join us!
Special discount on Friday, July 18 only if you register before midnight EST.
$45 instead of $60
Register and pay at this post

At a peace gathering

We’re not only ten thousand I said
there are more of us here
the dead of both wars
are with us

A journalist came and asked
how could I know that
haven’t you seen them
i ask the clueless guy
haven’t you heard your grandmother
groaning when they started it up again
do you live all alone
without any dead who drop in
for a drink with you
do you really think
you are only yourself

*--Dorothee Sölle
The Mystery of Death
(posthumous book - Sölle died in 2003 with the manuscript in draft)

The English version of the poem is by the book's translators, Nancy Lukens-Rumscheidt and Martin Lukens-Rumscheidt. The German original, "Auf einer Friedensversammlung," appeared in Dorothee Sölle, Loben ohne Lugen (Berlin, Wolfgang Fietkau, 2000).

Photo by the blogger New York Portraits, 2008.

Saturday, July 5, 2014

William Stringfellow! Nine days, beginning Monday!

A polemical, circus-loving, biblical, critical, incarnational, political, Psalms-praying Episcopal lawyer and theologian. You don't want to miss this. Nine days in the company of William Stringfellow (1928-85). Online retreat begins Monday! That's July 7, two days from now. See here for details.