A Contemplative Reformation: Brief Thoughts on The Church as a Community of Practice, Transformation, and Compassion

Dear friends,

Much fruitful work continues to come out of our shared time in Snowmass at the New Contemplatives Exchange.  A big piece of this time together was to delve more deeply into our own contexts in order to more fully explore how to embody and explore the contemplative lineage within the world around us.  Being a parish priest, I was grateful for the clarity that my ministry and role continues to be embedded within a parish community.

I want to invite you to a further step along the journey, to explore what it might look like to discern a new contemplative reformation.  Some of my colleagues and I have shared that the phrase “contemplative reformation” is very fitting, since the earlier reformation was grounded in a desire to focus on the deep meaningfulness of the Word of God, and we, in this season, are yearning to discern more fully how the Living Spirit of Christ continues to enliven and empower us.  A contemplative posture desires to open our hearts to become more aware of this presence…

Given the many pressures we face within parish ministry, my heart has been led to anchor itself in the contemplative tradition.  In this space, I find not only reassurance and peace but also a grounding that nurtures my own embodiment of compassion in a world that needs it so badly.

I wrote an article these past few weeks to lay out thoughts as to what an orientation in parish ministry would look like.  I would love to know what you think/how you feel–and if you’d like to be part of the ongoing conversation as the Contemplatives Exchange grows.

You can copy and paste it from here:

file:///C:/Users/Lisa%20&%20Stuart/Documents/Stuart/A%20Contemplative%20Reformation%20Revision.pdf

I will be setting up a Zoom webcall on Monday afternoon, October 16, from 2 to 4 pm., so more information coming soon…

Blessings today,

Stuart

 

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