What is Contemplative Prayer?
Contemplative prayer is a form of communion with God and an experience of God’s presence within us. This awareness of God’s presence usually comes unexpectedly— when we are reflecting on Scripture, meditating on our lives and what God may be asking of us, praying the rosary, or in prayer before the Blessed Sacrament. While always a gift of the Holy Spirit, it is also a form of prayer that can be developed through practice, and the most common form of this practice is known as Centering Prayer.
What is Centering Prayer?
Centering Prayer is a part of a living Christian tradition. Even the name has evolved through the centuries from the early Church which called it the “one-word” prayer. It has been called the Prayer of the Heart, Prayer of Simplicity, and Prayer of Simple Regard. The intention is to sit quietly in the peace of God’s presence.
- Sit relaxed and quiet with eyes closed. Select a “sacred word” such as Jesus, Love, Peace, Abba, Spirit—a word that has meaning for you.
- Silently introduce the sacred word as the symbol of your consent to God’s action and presence within. Focus your thoughts on this word as you repeat it silently in your mind and heart.
- When you become aware of distracting thoughts—such as plans for the day, ideas about your current concerns, tasks and projects—return ever so gently to the sacred word.
- At the end of the prayer period (usually 20-30 minutes), recite very slowly a favorite prayer, such as the Our Father, and sit for a few moments grounded in the realization that you have been present to God, and God to you. Accept the feelings you experience, whether pleasant or not, without judgment and with gratitude to God for this time
St. Basil Contemplative Prayer Group
St. Basil Contemplative Prayer Group meets every Saturday in the Annex at 10:00am. (on the second Saturday of the month, those who with come together at 9:30am to view and discuss a video or audio program on contemplative prayer before the prayer session)
Come join us whenever you want or need to sit in the peace of God’s presence...
For further information, call Patricia Januszkiewicz (440-526-1852) or Sister Judith Wood osf (440-526-1686)