Go Deeper On Your Spiritual Journey

Books on Christian Mysticism, Celtic Wisdom, and More

NEW FOR 2019: Now available! An Invitation to Celtic Wisdom draws on myth, folklore, poetry, and the tales of Celtic saints and heroes, to explore the spiritual tradition of the Celtic peoples — a tradition rooted in hospitality, love of nature, and a mystical sense of the presence of God. The Celtic way is more important […]

Join me this winter at the Ignatius House Jesuit Retreat Center in Atlanta for a special three-night contemplative retreat called “Two Paths to Contemplative Prayer: Spiritual Wisdom from St. Ignatius and Thomas Merton .” This silent retreat will include ample time for personal prayer, conferences each day to invite us deeper into our prayer through the wisdom of St. Ignatius and Merton, and the beautiful facility and grounds of Ignatius House — gorgeous even in the winter!

Date: January 31, 2019—February 2, 2019
Event: Two Paths to Contemplation: A 3 Night Retreat at Ignatius House
Topic: Contemplative Prayer
Sponsor: Ignatius House
Venue: Ignatius House
(404) 255-0503
Location: 6700 Riverside Drive NW
Atlanta, GA 30328
Public: Public
Registration: Click here to register.
More Info: Click here for more information.

To invite me to speak to your community, click here.

This year at the Oratory in Rock Hill, SC, I’m leading a Friday/Saturday retreat called Praying in the Thin Places: the Wisdom of the Celtic Saints. You can register for just Friday evening, for just Saturday, or for both days. Registration is delightfully “old school” — you can call the Oratory at 803-327-2097 or download this PDF, fill it out and mail it in with your registration fee! Click here to download the registration form.

Date: October 19, 2018—October 20, 2018
Event: Celtic Retreat at the Oratory in Rock Hill, SC
Topic: Celtic Spirituality
Sponsor: The Oratory Center for Spirituality
803-327-2097
Venue: The Oratory at Rock Hill
803-327-2097
Location: 434 Charlotte Avenue
Rock Hill, SC 29731
USA
Public: Public
Registration: Click here to register.

To invite me to speak to your community, click here.

Join me in October for a special online course exploring the spirituality of the Celts — through the poetry and prayers of the Carmina Gadelica!

Spirituality and Practice is one of the “hubs” for online spiritual learning, and this is my second course on Celtic spirituality with them! This course is designed both for beginners and for those who took last year’s course.

We will be exploring traditional Celtic prayers, poems, and incantations — and looking at how the down-to-earth wisdom of the Celtic people has much to teach us even in today’s world.

The online course includes emails from me, interaction in our online “Practice Circle,” and a conference call I’ll be hosting in late October.

Hope to connect with you there!

Date: October 8, 2018—November 2, 2018
Event: Online Course: Poetry and Prayer from the Celtic Tradition
Topic: Celtic Wisdom
Sponsor: Spirituality and Practice
Venue: Online Course
Public: Public
Registration: Click here to register.
More Info: Click here for more information.

To invite me to speak to your community, click here.

Answering the Call to Pray (March 23, 2019) is a day-retreat for tending to the most important of all quests: seeking the presence and love of God in our lives, to equip us to live more faithfully and joyfully as Christians in today’s world. Hope to see you there!

Date: March 23, 2019
Time: 09:00 a.m.-03:00 p.m.
Event: Lenten Retreat Day at the Cathedral of St. Philip
Topic: Answering the Call to Pray
Sponsor: Cathedral Bookstore, Cathedral of St. Philip, Cathedral of Christ the King, and Second Ponce de Leon Baptist Church
Venue: Cathedral of Saint Philip
Location: 2744 Peachtree Road NW
Atlanta, GA 30305
Public: Public
Registration: Click here to register.

To invite Carl McColman to speak to your community, click here.



I’ll be back in north Florida for this two-day retreat/workshop on contemplative dimensions of lay ministry and lay leadership. While the focus of our time together will be how vital contemplative spirituality is for anyone who has a leadership role in their neighborhood church, I think it should be of interest to anyone who feels drawn to contemplative spirituality.

Read more about this retreat (and register for it) by clicking here: Lay Leadership Retreat with Carl McColman

Date: November 2, 2018—November 3, 2018
Event: A Vocation of Love: Prayer and Our Covenant in Christ: A Lay Leadership Retreat with Carl McColman
Topic: A Vocation of Love
Sponsor: Episcopal Diocese of Florida
Venue: Camp Weed & Cerveny Conference Center
386-364-5250
Location: 11057 Camp Weed Place
Live Oak, FL 32060
USA
Public: Public
Registration: Click here to register.
More Info: Click here for more information.

To invite Carl McColman to speak to your community, click here.

To live prophetically, you’ve got to be questioning and looking at factors behind the facts. You’ve got to be aware that there are contradictions. In a certain sense, our prophetic vocation consists in hurting from the contradictions in society. This is a real cross in our lives today. For we ourselves are partly responsible.

Thomas Merton
Springs of Contemplation (New York: Farrar, Straus & Giroux, 1992), p. 157

Join me for an online learning experience this September: “Living Prayer: the Spirituality of Everyday Liturgy.”

This online course will explore how prayer and liturgy can be part of our day-to-day lives — not just for Sunday mornings or your annual retreat. Together we will read James K.A. Smith’s wonderful book You Are What You Love: The Spiritual Power of Habit, which is an accessible and user-friendly guide to the relationship between ritual, worship, and love — and how Christians can use these elements to foster healthy habits of ongoing spiritual growth.

Through prayer prompts, online discussions, and daily invitations into prayer, we will explore both personal and communal aspects of how we foster an ever-deepening, everyday relationship with the God of Love.

This class is an elective that counts toward the completion of the Certificate in Spiritual Formation from Columbia Theological Seminary. However, you do not have to be enrolled in the Certificate Program to participate in this class.

Early enrollment is recommended — class size is limited.

Date: September 10, 2018—October 6, 2018
Event: Online Course: Living Prayer, the Spirituality of Everyday Liturgy
Topic: Living Prayer
Sponsor: Columbia Theological Seminary Center for Lifelong Learning
lifelonglearning@ctsnet.edu
Venue: Online Course
Public: Public
Registration: Click here to register.
More Info: Click here for more information.

To invite me to speak to your community, click here.

I’m excited to be leading a retreat for the first time at the Franciscan Spirituality Center in La Crosse, WI. Our theme will be “Exploring Celtic Spirituality.”

Date: August 17, 2018—August 19, 2018
Event: Celtic Retreat at the Franciscan Spirituality Center in La Crosse, WI
Topic: Exploring Celtic Spirituality
Sponsor: Franciscan Sisters of Perpetual Adoration
Venue: Franciscan Spirituality Center
(608) 791-5295
Location: 920 Market Street
La Crosse, WI 54601
Public: Public
Registration: Click here to register.
More Info: Click here for more information.

To invite me to speak to your community, click here.

On June 24, 2018 I’ll be the “Preacher of the Week” at the Lakeside Chautauqua in Lakeside, Ohio. Over the next four days I’ll offer a series of classes called “Faith for Living” and three afternoon workshops on different dimensions of Christian prayer. The topic of the week is “Lord, teach us to pray!” — I’ll be sharing insights from the great Christian mystics as to how everyone can deepen their relationship with God through prayer.

If you aren’t a member of the Chatauqua you’ll need a gate pass to enter the chautauqua — but complimentary passes are available for the Sunday morning service and also for the Faith for Living classes. Or, you can purchase an all-day pass to enjoy the chautauqua, and if you want to participate in the entire program, there are on-site hotels and B&Bs. Visit www.lakesideohio.com for more information.

Date: June 24, 2018—June 28, 2018
Event: Lakeside Chautauqua Preacher of the Week (Lakeside, Ohio) — June 24-28, 2018
Topic: Lord, Teach Us to Pray!
Sponsor: Lakeside Chautauqua
Venue: Lakeside Chautauqua
Location: 236 Walnut Avenue
Lakeside, Ohio 43440
USA
Public: Public
More Info: Click here for more information.

To invite me to speak to your community, click here.

We can no longer rely on being supported by structures that may be destroyed at any moment by a political power or a political force. You cannot rely on structures. The time for relying on structures has disappeared. They are good and they should help us, and we should do the best we can with them. But they may be taken away, and if everything is taken away, what do you do next?

Thomas Merton
The Asian Journal of Thomas Merton (New York: New Directions, 1973), p. 338.

Silence, both external (a silent place) and internal (the quieting of the heart and mind), is a prerequisite to genuine prayer. It is not simply a question of removing exterior noise but a disciplined willingness to shut off the distractions of the environment, even “good” distractions, in order to listen to the promptings of God in the heart. Silence, in the tradition of prayer, means nothing more than alertness or readiness to receive God; it is another form of saying “yes” to the promptings of God’s self-gift.

Lawrence S. Cunningham
The Catholic Faith: An Introduction (New York: Paulist Press, 1987), pp. 133-4.

Love is not just the basis on which we build everything, but it’s also the energy with which we proceed, and it’s the final goal toward which we tend. Love has two lovely daughters called Grace and Mercy. Like identical twins, they are often indistinguishable: Grace is the inner freedom to be merciful. Mercy is grace in action. And both are the children of Love.

Richard Rohr
Essential Teachings on Love (Maryknoll, NY: Orbis Books, 2018), P. 82.

Running After Something You Already Have

A Dream About Montreat, Evelyn Underhill, and Learning to Let Go

I had a dream last night — about one of my favorite retreat centers, and one of my favorite books. The setting of my dream was the Montreat Conference Center, in Black Mountain NC, just up the road from Asheville. I’ve been to Montreat numerous times over the past six or seven years, but always […]

I’m leading a one-day workshop on Christian meditation and contemplative prayer at the New York Open Center. Our time together will include instruction and practice in silent prayer, time for personal and group reflection, and my reflections on how we can incorporate the life-transfiguring wisdom of the mystics into our lives today. Although centered on Christian spirituality and practice, this workshop is presented in an inclusive way that is appropriate for people of all faith traditions and all experience levels. Hope to see you there!

Date: April 22, 2018
Time: 09:30 a.m.-04:00 p.m.
Event: Be Still and Know: Reclaiming the Lost Art of Christian Contemplation and Meditation
Topic: Be Still and Know: Reclaiming the Lost Art of Christian Contemplation and Meditation
Sponsor: New York Open Center
(212) 219-2527
Venue: New York Open Center
(212) 219-2527
Location: 22 E. 30th Street
New York, NY 10016
USA
Public: Public
Registration: Click here to register.

To invite me to speak to your community, click here.