What pastors are saying about Centering Prayer:
“I think it’s easier to compartmentalize things and say ‘I can’t deal with that right now, I need to focus on this.’ And I think Centering Prayer allows you to not be so resistant to it. Because you’re dealing with your true feelings and thoughts, I do feel like I’m being more honest with myself, which helps me to see myself more clearly before God. It allows me to feel like I’m closer and growing in my intimacy with God.”
“[Centering Prayer] helps us be more honest with ourselves. It’s not just a ritual; there’s actually benefits in your relationship with God. I think because that relationship with yourself and God are improved, it’s going to naturally improve your relationships with others.”
Centering Prayer involves sitting quietly and deploying a sacred work to empty the mind of distractions and other thoughts for a period of 20 minutes. The silent and contemplative prayer is intended to allow you to experience God’s presence in yourself and to go beyond conversation with Christ to communion with God. It is not meant to replace other kinds of prayer.
***Unique offer: You are invited to bring your significant other to attend the Centering Prayer workshop held on May 10 in Greenville. We know you’ve been asking for programming for spouses and significant others for years — we are finally able to make it happen for this one workshop! Significant others who attend will participate in the workshop but not in the study or data collection. Clergy are welcome to attend with or without a significant other.
Click here to read more about Centering Prayer.
Frequently Asked Questions
1. Is there a literature base?
Although Centering Prayer is a spiritual practice that has not been specifically studied for stress symptom reduction, the act of Centering Prayer utilizes relaxation response techniques as well as “om” elements of transcendental meditation, which involve sitting with your eyes closed and repeating a mantra in order to shift into a wakeful, but restful state. Studies on both techniques have found that participants become more resilient under stressful circumstances and experience improvements in blood pressure, anxiety, depression, and pain, and even have reduced risk of stroke and cardiac events due to improved blood flow.
2. When and where is the workshop?
The workshop will take place May 10, 2019 at the Greenville Country Club.
3. How much time should I expect to commit to this practice?
Centering Prayer will be taught during a one day workshop (no overnight stay involved). Additionally, you will be encouraged to practice Centering Prayer for a minimum of 20 minutes per day for 3 months.
4. Is there a follow-up session?
Yes. Approximately 2-4 weeks after your workshop, you will be encouraged to participate in a 60-90 minute webinar session held over a web platform like Zoom with the option to participate by phone.