|UMC Santa Cruz|
We are so pleased to have you explore the concept of Centering Prayer. You may be here to continue a spiritual discipline of meditation that you have already practiced; you may be here to explore and deepen your relationship with God, or simply to develop and deepen your prayer life, however you conceive that to be. Whatever the reason, you are warmly welcomed and invited!
Centering Prayer has a long Christian tradition as one of the styles of Contemplative Prayer. Centering Prayer is an opportunity to empty ourselves of the running stream of conversation and the endless chatter in our minds and in our world. We tend to be surrounded by noise, words, and thoughts, making it difficult to listen for and to hear the voice of the Divine.
The way of this style of prayer meditation is to simply sit comfortably, and silently invite yourself to let go of the chatter and listen to hear the 'still small voice of God'. Centering Prayer Guidelines suggest it may be helpful, for some people, to use a "sacred word" of your own choosing that will draw you back to centering when you notice yourself being distracted by the "chatter". Sitting comfortably with your eyes closed, slowing your breathing, and simply being in a receptive mode for 20 minutes allows time to go deeper with God.
One of the best ways to experience Centering Prayer is to join others also committed to strengthening their spiritual journeys, so you are welcome to join us! Centering Prayer is open to anyone of any tradition, and any level of prayer experience.
We are located at 250 California Street, between Bay and Laurel on the west side of Santa Cruz. There is plenty of free parking in our adjacent lot. The Sanctuary is directly off the parking lot, and the outer door will be open for you. Come right in!
For additional information, you may visit the Contemplative Outreach Website at www.contemplativeoutreach.org.
Gregory the Great in the 6th Century wrote about Centering Prayer as contemplation; "resting in God".
I weave a silence … I weave a silence on to my lips.
I weave a silence into my mind. I weave a silence into my mind.
I weave a silence within my heart. I close my ears to distractions.
I close my eyes to attractions. I close my heart to temptations.
Calm me, O Lord, as you stilled the storm. Still me, O Lord, keep me from harm.
Let all the tumult within me cease. Enfold me Lord in your peace.