You have made us for Yourself, and our hearts are restless until they rest in you
Welcome to Contemplative Outreach Pittsburgh
Silence is God's first language.
Everything else is a poor translation.
- Contemplative Outreach Pittsburgh is a chapter of Contemplative Outreach Ltd--a worldwide network of individuals and small groups committed to living the contemplative dimension of the Gospel in daily life
- Our core practice is Centering Prayer, a silent prayer practice which opens us to the gift of contemplation, a deep relationship with God, beyond words, permeating every aspect of our lives.
When you pray, go into your room and shut the door
Upcoming Retreats and Programs
5-Day Centering Prayer Retreat
- August 13 - 18
- Bethany Retreat Center
This 5-Day Retreat will be an in-depth retreat for those experienced in Centering Prayer. The retreat will facilitate entrance into a more profound level of spiritual practice in an atmosphere of silence, solitude, and community with an opportunity to spend extended time in deep silence in community to encourage a more intimate union with God. An existing Centering Prayer practice is a prerequisite for attending this retreat. We will be using the series by Thomas Keating, GOD is LOVE, The Heart of all Creation.
Online Courses from Contemplative Outreach
Contemplative Outreach offers many in-home and online opportunities to deepen one's relationship with God and support the process of transformation in Christ. Attending a workshop, a retreat, a Zoom-video Centering Prayer group or participating in an online course with a global community can all support and deepen one's relationship with God and the experience of living a contemplative life
Be still, and know that I am God
We may think of prayer as thoughts or feelings expressed in words. But this is only one expression. In the Christian tradition contemplative prayer is considered to be the pure gift of God. It is the opening of mind and heart - our whole being - to God, the Ultimate Mystery, beyond thoughts, words, or emotions. Through grace we open our awareness to God whom we know by faith is within us, closer than breathing, closer than thinking, closer than choosing, and closer than consciousness itself. Contemplation is not a special state "achieved" in moments of silence, but it is the deep relationship with the "ground of our being", unfolding in each moment of our lives.
Centering Prayer is a method designed to facilitate the development of contemplative prayer by preparing our faculties to receive this gift. Centering Prayer is not meant to replace other kinds of prayer; rather it casts a new light and depth of meaning to them. It is at the same time a relationship with God and a discipline to foster that relationship. This method of prayer is a movement beyond conversation with Christ to communion with him. Practicing Centering Prayer is like gardening - we water, weed, and tend regularly, allowing for the beautiful flower of contemplation to grow, but the flower itself, its growth, its beauty, its aliveness, is a pure gift.