Archive for Friday Blog

The Power of Being Present

Today’s post is by Bryan Berghoef “Hello? Are you there, Dad?” I am awakened from my thoughts by my youngest child poking me, as I had apparently gone somewhere else while playing a game with her. This is a less common experience than it used to be, but still happens from time to time. We […]

Lent is a Time to Listen

Today’s post is by Mary van Balen While reading some reflections by Richard Rohr on the presence of Christ in creation from the beginning, I was struck by the phrase “Christ-soaked world.” It brought to mind two Scripture readings from Paul used for the beginning of Lent: one from 2 Corinthians and the other from […]

When We Listen to the Bell

Today’s post is by Bryan Berghoef My first introduction to a meditation bell or singing bowl was at my first Shalem staff meeting some years ago. I clearly remember hearing it ring out—the warm vibrations had an immediate calming influence. It seemed the obvious and natural way to lead us into silence, even though it […]

Singing the Lord’s Song

Today’s post is by Tilden Edwards “By the rivers of Babylon—there we sat down and there we wept when we remembered Zion….There our captors asked us to sing one of the songs of Zion. How could we sing the Lord’s song in a foreign land?” (Psalm 137) Like those Israelites forced into exile in Babylon, I […]

Making Space, One Book at a Time

Today’s post is by Mary van Balen Sometimes the simplest of chores become prayer. It’s about paying attention and being present to the moment. That’s what wisdom teachers have always said whether they were early Christian monks living in the Egyptian desert or a contemporary Buddhist monk like Thich Nhat Hanh; a Sufi poet like […]

February 02, 2019 by Mary van Balen 6 Comments
Categories: Contemplative Living, Contemplative Reading, and Contemplative Spirituality. Tags: books and Reading. Formats: Article and Friday Blog. Interest Areas: Friday Blog.

Sound of Silence, Stillness in Motion

Today’s post is by Ernest Yau A simple phrase, “Just a moment,” is an invitation to stand on holy ground. Intermissions, such as a mesmerized father holding his newborn for the first time or a grieving daughter gazing at her mother for the last, call us to not rush but hush. The curtain of life […]

February 02, 2019 by Ernest Yau 1 Comment
Categories: Contemplative Living and Prayer. Formats: Article and Friday Blog. Interest Areas: Friday Blog.

Hope in the New Year

Today’s post is by Mary van Balen I like to celebrate Christmas—all 12 days of the season. So, while discarded Christmas trees line neighborhood sidewalks, mine still shines with white lights and carefully chosen ornaments. By the time you read this, Epiphany will have come and gone, and my tree will be back in the […]

January 01, 2019 by Mary van Balen
Categories: Contemplative Living, Contemplative Reading, and Contemplative Spirituality. Tags: Christmas, hope, and Thurman. Formats: Article and Friday Blog. Interest Areas: Friday Blog.

Awakening the Energies of Love

Today’s post is by Patricia Farrell I think the most important qualification for a spiritual director is the commitment to a lifestyle of spiritual deepening. One of the very important things I learned, experientially, in the Shalem program is that doing spiritual direction is about the way I live my life every day. My own […]

The Privilege of Silence

Today’s post is by Carl McColman Back in 2003, I spent a day at a relatively new monastery near Sligo, Ireland. Like many small religious foundations just getting off the ground, it was struggling, although the members of the community were filled with optimism and a sense of purpose about their shared mission. I plied […]

Welcoming Christ, Welcoming Others

Today’s post is by Mary van Balen Stepping out of the parking garage elevator and starting down the walkway to the office building, I stopped to look at the nativity scene that had been placed outside the large windows. All the faces were painted pink-white. Sure, that nativity was probably bought decades ago and spends most […]

December 12, 2018 by Mary van Balen
Categories: Community, Contemplation in Action, and Contemplative Living. Tags: Advent, bishops, Christmas, and racism. Formats: Article and Friday Blog. Interest Areas: Friday Blog.