Friday, March 27, 2020

Book group (and spiritual sharing) on When in Doubt, Sing: Prayer in Daily Life

I'm going to be hosting a book group (and spiritual sharing time) once a week online, on Zoom, a video-conference platform with which some of you are already familiar.

The group begins next week, the week of March 29, 2020.


You don't have to have a Zoom account to participate. You just receive an invitation via e-mail and click on a link.


The group will be based on my book When in Doubt, Sing, Prayer in Daily Life.

We'll focus on one chapter (topic) per session. I am also adding to the series a couple of bonus topics that I would have included if I were writing the book today.

Each session will run for 90 minutes. It will be live and we'll be able to see and hear each other.

We can go for less time in any given session if we run out of things to say before the 90 minutes are over, but I want to leave enough time for
a) some brief meditative silence at the beginning;
b) conversation about the chapter and topic of the day with questions and clarifications';
c) sharing of our own stories of prayer and spiritual practice on the topic of the chapter; and
d) a brief prayer, meditation, or poem at the end of each session.
These will all flow into each other, but having a structure will help free us to slow down, reflect deeply, and listen carefully to each other and to the Holy One.

The group will meet once a week but I will offer it  this opportunity on two different days of the week, each at a different time, in order to make this experience accessible both to people in the Americas and to people in Africa, Europe, Asia, Australia and New Zealand, and the Pacific Islands. I live in the U.S. in the Eastern Time Zone.

You can pick EITHER

(1) the Tuesday group, which will meet at 8:00 P.M. Eastern Time

OR

(2) the Thursday  group meeting at 10:00 A.M. Eastern Time.
I will run both groups if I get enough people signed up for each, and by "enough," I mean half a dozen people or more.
Bear in mind that Daylight Saving Time has already begun in North America and will begin in Europe on Sunday, March 29. Here's the World Clock site so you can make the time conversion from the above times to your time zone.
Both groups begin next week: the Tuesday one on March 31 at 8 p.m. Eastern and the Thursday one on April 2 at 10 a.m. Eastern. The chapter will be the Introduction (pp. 2-9) and we will also have a chance to introduce ourselves.


By happy coincidence, my publisher has been in the middle of an overstock sale this month (going till late April at latest notice) and the book is available for only $3 (list price is close to $20 w/tax). Click here for more information.
The press's website is open for orders 24/7, but the offices have just closed until April 13 due to current coronavirus-related travel restrictions in Indiana, where the press is located. Books ordered now won't ship till after April 13 However, you can buy the e-book version on various platforms including Amazon, which appears to have a sale on the paperback for less $ than the e-book.
If you don't already own the book and you can't afford the cost right now, please write and let me know and we will figure something out (probably a chapter-by-chapter scan sent via e-mail) so you can read the chapter for each week.
There will be no charge for the group itself. Donations are welcome (see PayPal button below) but I want this to be accessible and a source of spiritual formation and support in these challenging times

All you need to do is to e-mail me here and let me know (1) that you wish to sign up for the book group and (2) which day and time you plan to participate each week.
I'll keep posting reminders here of what the topic of the week is so that you can attend one session at a time (you'll still need to sign up so I can send you the Zoom link) if you're not sure about making a long-term commitment. It would be great if you could participate every week, for continuity and for the fullest possible experience, but life being what it is, I know that's not always possible, and the book has a lot of chapters, though they are short!
In addition to the two groups above, I am open to running a group for clergy and other religious leaders, who are especially stretched in these difficult days and may wish to have a confidential group of colleagues with whom they can talk about the book and about their spiritual life and prayer practice. If you are interested in this, e-mail me and let me know! Also let me know what days of the week are good and not good for you. (And save your Sabbath time for rest!) If we get half a dozen people or more, I'll run the group.

Feel free to write me with any questions, either below in the comments, or privately, at readwithredmont at earthlink dot net (or just click here).

I hope this will be a nourishing opportunity for you. Stay safe and well, and remember to let me know of your interest and commitment by signing up via e-mail!

A donation button is below. Donations are welcome but not required.





Monday, February 10, 2020

Lent 2020 online retreats: one long (Bonhoeffer), three short (Stringfellow, Soelle, Isasi-Diaz)

art by Thomas Merton
Ash Wednesday, the first day of Lent in Christian churches of the Western traditions, is February 26.
 Please join us for one or more of our online retreats this Lent.

Lent, the 40-day season preceding Easter, is the Christian church's annual long retreat.

We go on this retreat --not necessarily to a different geographical place, but to a zone of mindfulness and practice that simplifies our life and peels away its non-essentials-- in order to reconnect, deeply, with God, with Christ, with the Spirit at the heart of God's life, our life, and the life of the world.

We clear space and time to make room for the God of comfort and surprises, and to remember what is deepest and truest in our lives.

 
We have 
four online retreats for you to choose from this Lent. 

We are offering one long online retreat, lasting all of Lent and Holy Week, and three nine-day online retreats. The long retreat commits you to checking in with the retreat resources three times a week. The short retreat offers retreat resources every day for nine days.

All of the retreats have a structure and a schedule, but they are flexible enough to integrate into your daily life: you are the one who decides when and where to read and pray with the materials in the retreat (day or night, at home or elsewhere) and how to apply the invitations to practice.

 Click on the name of each retreat below for further information (about the person and about the retreat) and registration.

Would you like to explore the life and writings of Dietrich Bonhoeffer through short readings and spiritual exercises? A Lent-long online retreat invites you to do so. It is a retreat, not a course, so the readings are relatively short and the focus is meditative and intended to give you a lens through which to live the Christian season of Lent this year.
WEDNESDAY, FEBRUARY 26 - SATURDAY, APRIL 18:

Lent with Dietrich Bonhoeffer (includes Holy Week and Easter Week)
Not sure you want to go on a long retreat, even online? Would you prefer a shorter, more intense experience? If so, we have three offerings for you, each of them nine days long and each inspired by the writings and life of a 20th century or  20th-21st century Christian from the Northern Hemisphere. You may choose one or more.
WEDNESDAY, MARCH 4 - THURSDAY, MARCH 12:
William Stringfellow: Nine Days in Lent
MONDAY, MARCH 16 - TUESDAY, MARCH 24:
Ada María Isasi-Díaz: Nine Days in Lent
FRIDAY, MARCH 27 - SATURDAY, APRIL 4:
Dorothee Soelle: Nine Days in Lent
All of these online retreats call us to simplicity, mindfulness, and holiness. Like the season of Lenten itself, they invite us to repentance and conversion, but also to joy. 

Peace be with you. Please join us on the journey of Lent.

Lent with Dietrich Bonhoeffer: an online retreat


Dietrich Bonhoeffer, Christian pastor in the Lutheran tradition, scholar, and resister against the Nazi regime, was executed for his resistance activities in 1945, at the age of 39. His writings and life have become well known around the world, from South Africa to South Korea.

This retreat will place us in conversation with the life and writings of Dietrich Bonhoeffer. This is a retreat, not a class, though we will certainly learn from the retreat and from each other. Our lens will be a meditative one in which both prayer and critical thinking will be welcome and encouraged. There will be readings, but they will not be as long as they would be for a course. In addition to readings, the retreat will include some musical and visual resources.

Like all human beings, Dietrich Bonhoeffer was complex and lived in a particular historical period. We need to look at him in the context of his own times as well as with our contemporary lenses.

The retreat will offer spiritual exercises based on Bonhoeffer's life and work and oriented toward the Christian season of Lent.

This year, the Christian season of Lent begins on Ash Wednesday, February 26, in the Western Christian churches. (The Eastern Orthodox season of Great Lent nearly coincides with Lent in the Western church this year and begins on Monday, March 2.)

Lent is in many ways a long retreat for the whole church, a six-week preparation for the celebration of Easter. It is a time of intensified or more intentional prayer, greater simplicity of life, and giving to others, especially those who are poor.

In observance of Lent 2020, we invite you to join us in

Lent with Dietrich Bonhoeffer
An Online Retreat
February 26-April 19, 2020

The first full week of the retreat starts on the first Sunday of Lent, March 1, but the retreat starts on Ash Wednesday, February 26. While it's best to get started on Ash Wednesday --the gateway to the season of Lent-- feel welcome to start slowly, a day or two later, if for some reason you aren't able to join us right on Wednesday.

Read on for further details,
registration information,
and FAQ. 
[Prefer a shorter retreat? We're offering three this Lent. See here.]

Focus and themes


Every week in the retreat will have an overarching theme or cluster of themes related to Bonhoeffer's life and work.

Prelude (Ash Wednesday and the next three days):

Why Bonhoeffer? Why this retreat?
With an introduction to Bonhoeffer's life and some Psalms
Week 1 (March 1): 
Bonhoeffer's context and ours (with an examination of the Nazification of Germany, but also of Bonhoeffer's family and personal formation)
Week 2 (March 8):
Jesus Christ, discipleship, and grace
Week 3 (March 15):
Life together: community, church, resistance
Week 4 (March 22):
Friendship, trust, commitment: Bonhoeffer and relationships
Week 5 (March 29):
Travel, ecumenism, inspiration: Bonhoeffer beyond German borders, from Rome to Harlem and Sweden to South Africa
Week 6 (April 5, Palm Sunday/Sunday of the Passion, and into Holy Week):
Suffering, sacrifice, and the cross
Week 12 (April 12, Easter):
Heirs to Bonhoeffer, friends of Christ: living Resurrection.
We will ponder each theme or cluster of themes through Bonhoeffer's writings and related resources and also reflect on and pray with these themes as they are manifest in our own lives.

To register and pay

To pay by credit or debit card or with a PayPal account, simply register and pay in a single transaction using the secure PayPal button below.

Note: You can use that PayPal button and its secure connection to pay with a credit or debit card even if you don't have a PayPal account. The PayPal mechanism will record your name and e-mail address and serve as your registration. You will also receive an automated acknowledgment from PayPal and a personal e-mail acknowledgment from me.


Payment is non-refundable and due upon registration.

Please note the EARLY BIRD RATE. It applies through Valentine's Day, February 14. If you are in a situation of financial stress, please use the discount rate on the menu below or write me so that we can arrange for a payment plan or a scholarship. Don't let your lack of money prevent you from seeking spiritual support and nourishment here.

If you wish to help make possible more scholarships and discounts, just check the benefactor rate.




Retreat fees (choose one)





If you prefer to pay by check, write me, Jane Redmont, and I will acknowledge your registration and send you the mailing address. I will notify you via e-mail when I receive your check.

FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions)

An online retreat? What's that?


It's a retreat in daily life with resources and guidance online. You'll need a computer or tablet and an internet connection. You'll be using the computer to make the retreat, but you won't be spending the whole retreat staring at the computer.

The beauty of an online retreat is that you can check in with the retreat on your own schedule, at whatever hour of the night or day works for you. You do need to devote some time to it, but if you have 20-30 minutes two or three times a week, you can benefit from the retreat. You can also spend more time on the retreat if you wish, or check in daily. The retreat is structured to work for a two or three times a week check-in as well as for daily participation. It's up to you.

How does an online retreat work?

The retreat offers daily resources online on a blog. More specifically, a closed blog.

What's a closed blog? It's a blog open only to those whom the blog owner-administrator (that's me, Jane, the retreat facilitator) has signed in.

In other words, the retreat blog 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. Conversations among retreatants remain private.

Do I have to talk to other people on this retreat? I'm a very private person.

See the answer to the next question.


Can I get some support here? I want some company.


These 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.

You can and may remain private and just read the blog and use the spiritual practices and meditations on your own. Nobody will force you to speak or disclose who you are.

Or you can and may take part in conversation with other retreatants. Conversation during the online retreat takes place in writing, through the comments feature on the blog posts of the retreat blog. Please be prepared to observe confidentiality and to respect other participants' diverse experiences and outlooks.

Use the retreat according to your personality and your circumstances. The online retreat is like a room in which you are welcome to sit in the company of others and to be either visible or invisible.

What about that theme for the first week of Easter? I thought this was a Lenten retreat.

It is. But the celebration of the Passion and Resurrection are one. Lent doesn't just lead to the Last Supper, the Cross, and the silent closed tomb. It leads to Easter, the open tomb, and the proclamation of enduring and risen life.

The retreat will continue into the first week of Easter for those who desire. This will give us an opportunity to celebrate Easter together and to reflect on the meaning of Bonhoeffer's life and writings in the context of Resurrection.

Also, it is likely that some of our participants will be clergy and lay leaders, for whom April 5-12 will be the most intense and demanding days of the church year. These ministers will need quiet and rest on Easter Monday (April 13) and some personal reflection time during that week (Easter Week, April 12-18) afterwards. Having a retreat offering during Easter Week takes this need into account.

What do you mean by "spiritual exercises"?

Spirituality --including Christian spirituality-- involves our entire life. It is bodily as well as mental. It involves our imagination and also our actions. It is about practice, not just thinking.

A spiritual exercise, therefore, may be a prayer or meditation, or a reading assignment or way of reading; but it may also be a piece of writing in a journal, a new or repeated way of interacting with others, a way of gazing or focusing, a practice of fasting or mindful eating, a new way of creating, a daily habit.


Retreat designer and facilitator

Jane Redmont is a retreat leader, spiritual director, pastoral worker, writer, and theologian who has worked in campus, urban, and parish ministries as well as in academia and the nonprofit world. An Episcopal (Anglican) 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 in ecumenical and interreligious relations all her life. She has read and taught the works of Dietrich Bonhoeffer for many years, including in a college course called "Radical Theologians of Europe and North America" and an online course called "Radical Hope in Hard Times." A graduate of Oberlin College and Harvard Divinity School, she began her academic study of Bonhoeffer in her first semester of Ph.D studies with a paper entitled "Preaching in the Storm: The Word from the Pulpit and the Word in the World in the Theology of Dietrich Bonhoeffer."

Jane serves as a Congregational Consultant and Search Consultant for the Episcopal Diocese of Massachusetts and is co-chair of the Bishops' Commission for Ecumenical and Interreligious Relations in  that diocese. She just completed six months as Scholar in Residence for the Massachusetts Council of Churches with the assistance of a grant from Mass Humanities. She is the author of Generous Lives: American Catholic Women Today and When in Doubt, Sing: Prayer in Daily Life


Questions? Concerns? Write Jane here.

For a full listing of Lent 2020 online retreats, see here

Nine Days with William Stringfellow - Lent 2020

The full list of our Lent 202o online retreats is here.

Longing for some prayerful and reflective time in your busy life?
Interested in a new perspective on the Bible in these United States?
Wondering about the relationship between Christian faith and 
social realities?
Join us for

Nine Days with William Stringfellow
an online retreat
Wednesday, March 4 - Thursday, March 12, 2020


William Stringfellow (1928-1985), was a lawyer by training and trade, not a professional theologian, though he wrote a dozen books and was one of most astute and insightful Christian thinkers of the 20th century. An Episcopal layman who understood himself very much as "Protestant" and engaged in open criticism of his own beloved church, he was grounded in the prayerful study of scripture. Stringfellow was also a radical social critic preoccupied with the powers of sin and death in the world and in the cosmos.

"My concern," Stringfellow wrote, "is to understand America biblically -- in contrast to the more common tendency, to understand the Bible 'Americanly.'" One of the published summaries of his work notes that his great theme "was the Constantinian compromise, the accommodation of Christianity to the values of the empire and the preservation of status quo."

Click here for an informative essay on William Stringfellow.

What, when, where, how

* An online nine-day spiritual retreat, beginning Wednesday, March 4, 2020.

* The life and writings of William Stringfellow serve as a focus and inspiration.

* Simple and accessible:
one quote or short excerpt per day
one spiritual exercise per day
one prayer per day
on nine consecutive days
* At home, on a break at work, in a coffee shop, on vacation, in your daily life: read, reflect, meditate, and pray with the retreat materials in a way that suits your schedule.

* Spiritual refreshment, nurture, and challenge.

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

* Easy registration via PayPal secure link, which takes credit and debit cards in addition to PayPal. Note: You don't have to have your own PayPal account to use this online payment method. (If you prefer paying by check, please e-mail me.)
Some discounts are available for those in financial hardship. Talk to me.
The benefactor rate helps offset costs and makes scholarship aid possible.
Register here!



Retreat fee (choose one)




Payment is non-refundable and due upon registration. 

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, and sometimes a piece of music too) 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 on the one-time sign-in mechanism. After you first sign on to the retreat blog, the blog will always recognize you.

Privacy and community 

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

OR

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. (More about your friendly retreat designer and facilitator, Jane Redmont, here. Please do not hesitate to write me with questions or concerns.)

Reminder:  The full list of our Lent 2020 online offerings is here.


Block Island, R.I., where Stringfellow shared a home with the poet Anthony Towne.

Nine Days with Ada María Isasi-Diaz - Lent 2020

Longing for meditative time *and* new energy in your busy life, this Lent?
Eager to discover --or remember-- the life and work of Ada María Isasi-Díaz?
Curious about or committed to listening to the wisdom of grassroots Latinas?

 Aware that spirituality involves struggle, community, family, in daily life?

Join us!
Nine Days with Ada María Isasi-Díaz
an online retreat
Monday, March 16 - Thursday, March 24, 2020



Ada María Isasi-Díaz (1943-2012), born in La Habana, Cuba, came to the United States as a political refugee at the age of 18. Educated in Catholic and ecumenical Protestant institutions, she became a professor of Ethics at Drew University Divinity School in 1991, the year after receiving her Ph.D. from Union Theological Seminary. She taught at Drew until her retirement in 2009. Isasi-Díaz was the editor and author of several books, including En La Lucha/In the Struggle: Elaborating a Mujerista Theology and Mujerista Theology: A Theology for the Twenty-First Century. Her development of a mujerista theology was, within the rich field of liberation theology, the expression of the theological, ethical, and socio-cultural insights of grassroots Latinas, whom she always considered her "community of accountability." Her final project was co-editing the book Theological Perspectives for Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness: Public Intellectuals for the Twenty-First Century.

Isasi-Díaz became involved in the movement for the ordination of Catholic women in the 1970s. During her years at Drew, she maintained both her residence in New York City and her involvement in Our Lady Queen of Angels parish in El Barrio, East Harlem. After the decision by the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of New York to close the church building in early 2007, Isasi-Díaz helped to lead protest vigils and and worship services outside the church on the sidewalk, frequently serving as preacher at the weekly service. She was an activist for social justice as well as church justice, not simply asking for church reform but living new ways of being church at the heart of her community. Her lifelong attention to the lives of grassroots Latinas nourished her ethical, theological, and spiritual thinking.

The online retreat will focus on the meaning and lived experience of realities and concepts basic to AMID's life and work, including lo cotidiano (daily life); la lucha (the struggle); la comunidad/la familia (community/family); permítanme hablar (allow me to speak); un poquito de justicia (a little justice); place and being a person of multiple locations; and kin-dom.
Note: The meaning and resonance of the Spanish words are not fully embodied in their English translations. These words cannot be divorced from their Latina/o cultural, political, economic, religious, and linguistic context. AMID, who wrote in both English and Spanish, used the Spanish words above in her English texts, and so will we.
What, when, where

* An online nine-day spiritual retreat, beginning Monday, March 16, 2020.

* The writings of Ada María Isasi-Díaz will provide us with focus and inspiration.

* Simple and accessible:
one quote per day
one spiritual exercise per day
one prayer per day
on nine consecutive days
* At home, on a break at work, in a coffee shop, on vacation, in your daily life: read, reflect, meditate, and pray with the retreat materials in a way that suits your schedule.

* Spiritual refreshment, nurture, and challenge.

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

* Easy registration via PayPal secure link, which takes credit and debit cards in addition to PayPal. Note: You don't have to have your own PayPal account to use this online payment method. (If you prefer paying by check, please e-mail me.)
Some discounts are available for those in financial hardship. Talk to me. The benefactor rate helps offset costs and makes scholarship aid possible.
Register here!




Retreat fee (choose one)



Payment is non-refundable and due upon registration.



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, and a little music to feed the soul) 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, I will send instructions for the one-time-only sign-in mechanism. After you first sign on to the retreat blog, the blog will always recognize you.

Privacy and community

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

OR

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. (More about your friendly retreat designer and facilitator, Jane Redmont, here. Please do not hesitate to write me with questions or concerns.)

NOTE:

This retreat is not a replacement for the in-depth study of Dr. Isasi-Díaz's life and thought. Like our other online retreats (inspired by --among others-- Dorothy Day, Dorothee Soelle, Howard Thurman, Thomas Merton, and William Stringfellow) this one offers a carefully chosen selection of wisdom from a larger body of writing, together with attention to the life that produced and reflected this wisdom and to ways we can learn from this wisdom in daily life.

Reminder: The full listing of our Lent 2020 online offerings is here.

Nine days with Dorothee Soelle - Lent 2020

The full list of our Lent 2020 online offerings is here.

Do you need spiritual support and enrichment
during the fourth and fifth week of Lent?

It's not too late!
Join us for a time of reflection, practice, and prayer.

Friday, March 27 to Saturday, April 4, 2020
Nine Days with Dorothee Soelle
an online retreat



Dorothee Soelle (also spelled Sölle) (1928-2003) was a German theologian, poet, peace activist, Protestant and ecumenical Christian, spouse and mother, teacher, socialist, and from mid-life on, feminist. She is the author of The Silent Cry: Mysticism and Resistance; Against the Wind: Memoir of a Radical Christian; Revolutionary Patience; Theology for Skeptics; and other books.

Soelle wrote in an accessible manner (mostly in prose, sometimes in poems)-and not in the form of long academic treatises. Her chosen topics, though, were often challenging: silence and language in the struggle to name God; suffering and the vulnerability of God; Jesus the risk-taker and the community of the friends of Jesus; history, evil, and Christian political engagement; the church as community of memory, resistance, and hope.

This retreat will be especially helpful if you
--are struggling with the challenge of staying hopeful in hard times
--want to explore connections between Christian spirituality and social justice
--are busy and yearn for some quiet and inspiration
--are honest about your struggles in faith
--want to rekindle your relationship with God
--got a late start on Lent
What, when, where, how

* An online nine-day spiritual retreat, beginning Friday, March 27, 2020

*
The life and writings of Dorothee Soelle serve as a focus and inspiration.

* Simple and accessible:

one quote or short excerpt per day
one spiritual exercise per day
one prayer per day
on nine consecutive days
* At home, on a break at work, in a coffee shop, on vacation, in your daily life: read, reflect, meditate, and pray with the retreat materials in a way that suits your schedule.

* Spiritual refreshment, nurture, and challenge.

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

Easy registration via PayPal secure link, which takes credit and debit cards in addition to PayPal.
Note: You don't have to have your own PayPal account to use this online payment method. (If you prefer paying by check, please e-mail me.)
--Register by March 2 for the Early Bird discounted rate!
--Some discounts are available for those in financial hardship. Talk to me.
--The benefactor rate helps offset costs and makes scholarship aid possible.
Payment is non-refundable and due upon registration.

Register here!




Retreat fee (choose one)




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, and sometimes a piece of music too) 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 on the one-time sign-in mechanism. After you first sign on to the retreat blog, the blog will always recognize you.

Privacy and community

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

OR

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. (More about your friendly retreat designer and facilitator, Jane Redmont, here. Please do not hesitate to write me with questions or concerns.)


Reminder: The full list of our Lent 2020 online offerings is here.

All of the retreats have a structure and a schedule, but they are flexible enough to integrate into your daily life: you are the one who decides when and where to read and pray with the materials in the retreat (day or night, at home or elsewhere) and how to apply the invitations to practice.

Tuesday, December 3, 2019

Sloooow Down: A Mindful Advent - online retreat begins

Sloooow Down: 
A Mindful Advent
an online retreat

So much to do. So little time. So many hopes. Such heartache. Come, O Emmanuel, God-with us! Remind us that you are already with us, and teach us at the same time to wait for what is not yet.

Our annual Advent online retreat begins with a "soft start" the evening of Tuesday, December 3, 2019 and a formal start on Wednesday, December 4.

It will run through Christmas Eve, December 24


Sloooow Down: A Mindful Advent will be a combination of living the spirituality of Advent --waiting, hoping, imagining the future, drawing on the wisdom of the past, and often mourning or rejoicing along the way-- and gentle, supportive, non-competitive "clearing the clutter" in our lives. Not just the clutter of "stuff" but the clutter of time and schedules, of regret and anxiety, of whatever keeps us from hearing the word of God afresh and from living the advent of "God-with-us," Emmanuel.

We will focus not only on "preparing the way," but on "living the day." Is that a paradox? You betcha. Christian faith and practice are full of them.

The retreat and its resources will take into account --and work with-- the fact that most of us not only have to earn a living but are engaged in housework, cooking, care-giving for family, commuting, and/or volunteer work.

The retreat will help us to slow down, to be more mindful of the season and of the present, assisting us with resources that include images of Advent, sounds of Advent, biblical wisdom and poetry, prayers, and simple spiritual exercises and practices.

There will be a resource every day to offer you inspiration and support. You will benefit most from the retreat if you check in daily, but you can and may check in at any time of day or night, whenever it suits you, and even 10 minutes a day can make a difference in your life.

We register for the retreat as individuals, but we make the retreat in community. As always you will have the choice whether to engage others through comments and sharing of experiences or simply to absorb the retreat resources and stay silent and invisible.

As always, we have a sliding scale for retreat fees, from broke to benefactor.

See below the image for a little on how an online retreat works, and for a registration link.



Image: Paul Shakespear, "Remolino " (acrylic on canvas, 2014).

An online retreat? Really?

The retreat offers its resources online on a blog. More specifically, a closed blog.

What's a closed blog? It's a blog like this one, but unlike this one, it is not public: it is open only to those whom the blog owner-administrator (that's me, Jane) 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.

This kind of retreat is ideal if you are a busy person or if you are geographically isolated from retreat centers or other spiritual resources, or if mobility is a challenge. Even a short daily check-in can be refreshing and beneficial. What matters is faithfulness.

It doesn't matter whether you are a night owl or and early riser. The retreat has a structure, but is flexible enough to integrate into your daily life. You can take part in it from home, on a break from work, in a coffee shop, on vacation, anywhere you have a computer or a tablet and some intentional time apart: read, reflect, meditate, pray, and practice with the retreat resources in a way that suits your schedule.

The resources will be there on the retreat blog, waiting for you, every day of Advent from December 4 to December 24.

Once you have registered for the retreat, I will send instructions for the sign-in mechanism for the retreat blog. After you first sign on to the retreat blog, the blog will always recognize you when you visit it.

Registration

Please register via the PayPal secure link below, which takes credit and debit cards in addition to PayPal. (It will NOT show me your credit card number.)

You don't have to have your own PayPal account to use this online payment method. 

If you prefer paying by check, please e-mail me to let me know and I will send you the mailing address.

Some discounts and scholarships are available for those in financial hardship. If you are too broke for the discounted rates in the drop-down menu below, please write me.

The benefactor rate helps offset costs and makes scholarship aid and discounts possible.

Payment is non-refundable and due upon registration.

Register here:



Retreat fee (choose one)




O Wisdom,
O holy Word of God
You govern all creation
with your strong yet tender care.
Come
and show your people
the way to salvation.