What

we are About

What

we are About

Contemplative Outreach

..............................................................

............................................................................

Contact Us

 

Contemplative Outreach
South  Africa (COSA)

 

We are part of an international spiritual network of individuals and small faith communities committed to renewing the contemplative dimension of the Gospel in everyday, active life. While we encourage every practice leading to Christian contemplation, our primary
focus  is to present the method of Centering Prayer. We develop resources and programs to further the spiritual growth of the network. A commitment to the regular daily practice of Centering Prayer is the primary expression of belonging to the network.

 

Our mission is to help churches and parishes, schools and places of prayer establish a Centering Prayer Program by providing the Introduction to Centering Prayer, retreats and formation for small groups. We also train persons to teach and share the gift of
Centering  Prayer. We encourage the dynamic process of Lectio Divina (a spiritual praying of scripture), particularly its movement into contemplative prayer, as facilitated by a regular practice of
Centering  Prayer.

 

We identify with the Christian contemplative heritage and recognize this to be the common ground of Christian unity. Contemplative Outreach through its programs presents the teaching of the Christian contemplative heritage in an updated format.

 

We recognize that a mature fruit of Centering Prayer is a deepening, caring response to the needs and rights of the human family and an ever increasing respect for the integrity of all creation. Centering Prayer is not a withdrawal from a commitment of service, rather it is
a  spiritual nurturing for those committed to service.

 

-............................................................

..........................................................................................................................

.........

..............................................................................

----...................................................

----.........................................

 

Eastern Cape

 

Contemplative Outreach South Africa has a presence in the Eastern Cape in the form of a centering prayer group in Grahamstown, and there are many individual practitioners of Centering Prayer in Port Elizabeth and elsewhere in the Eastern Cape.  Our contact person in this region is Wendy Sweetman.

 

Contact Us

Contact Us

Contact Us

Contact Us

Contact Us

 

Johannesburg

 

In 1996, Fr Carl Arico visited Johannesburg at the invitation of Winnie Young, and the Johannesburg chapter was established.  Currently, we offer workshops on the principles and practice of Centering Prayer, Lectio Divina and the Welcoming Prayer, on request.  We also host regular monthly meetings on the third Saturday of each month; this year (2016) we have dedicated ourselves to mornings of reflection, inviting a guest speaker each time.  Please contact Hilary Tyghe for further information.

 

 

Kwazulu Natal

 

Our region was lucky enough to be the home of Winnie Young, founder of COSA, so we were blessed from the start by her presence and wisdom.

She was the first co-ordinator of our region when the national ad-hoc committee gave way in 1997 to a structure consisting of regional chapters.  She was succeeded by Denise Allen, Norman McNally, Felicity Nicholson, Elizabeth Norton-Amor, Jonathan Leach and most recently by Richard Hawkins.  The KwaZulu-Natal chapter has seen continued growth, with 13

prayer groups currently active in the various sub-chapters of Durban, Pietermaritzburg, South Coast, Kokstad and Northern Drakensberg.

A steering committee oversees the work of the chapter, which includes organising Days of Renewal, retreats and conferences for our members,

and presenting Introductory Workshops to those who wish to learn more about Centering Prayer.  A newsletter is published three times a year.

 

 

Western Cape

 

Beginnings…

In April 1991 Winnie Young from Durban, a Catholic lay person, met with Fr. Thomas Keating at Snow mass, Colorado. Winnie returned to South Africa
and  started strengthening her ties with people who shared her passion for Contemplative prayer. Among those she contacted was Sylvia Collier in the Western Cape. This resulted in an Introductory Workshop to Centering Prayer held at St Raphael’s, an Anglican Retreat house in Faure near Stellenbosch in June 1992. Over the years we had visits and training/teaching from Frs. Basil Pennington, Carl Arico, William Fickle, Thomas Keating and Richard Rohr. COSA (WC) also participated in the Parliament of World Religions in 1999…

 

… and so the Spiritual journey continues …

Today we have over 560 names on our data base. We offer regular ‘Mornings of Enrichment’ with speakers, ‘Days of Resting in God’, retreats and formal
and  informal introductions to Centering Prayer and Lectio Divina. There are 29 small groups meeting and we have 4 contact persons in the greater Cape area with groups meeting regularly. Kindly refer to our newsletter,
The  Contemplative Journey, for more information of activities and contact details in the Western Cape Province.

-......................................................

-......................................................

 

Free State

 

Contemplative Outreach, Free State, South Africa, is a regional branch of  Contemplative Outreach South Africa. We recognize that a mature fruit of Centering Prayer is a deepening caring response to the needs and rights of the human family and an ever increasing respect for the integrity of all creation. Centering Prayer is not a withdrawal from a commitment of service; rather it is a spiritual nurturing for those committed to service.

 

 

Pretoria

 

In 1996 we were blessed by a visit from Fr Carl Arico who gave an introductory talk on centering prayer at Santa Sophia Centre in Waterkloof, Pretoria.
This  was followed in 1997, by a Centering Prayer workshop, run by Winnie Young and a team from Johannesburg. This was attended by 60 people including priests and seminarians. From these attendees Contemplative Outreach Pretoria was launched. Sr Frances, a Holy Cross Sister, was the first Chapter coordinator. Since then, Contemplative Outreach has been firmly entrenched in Pretoria. Today there are groups fully committed to the
practice  of Centering Prayer and living the contemplative life, from various denominations : Catholic, Methodist, Anglican, Presbyterian as well interdenominational group.

 

Groups meet weekly. Once a month we share in a mini retreat morning,
to  further provide contemplative teachings and exposure to more silence. Weekend and Intensive Silent retreats are offered twice a year. Workshops are offered to any interested in the contemplative dimension of prayer and life.

 

Contemplative Outreach International

 

Contemplative Practices

Contemplative practices facilitate and deepen our relationship with God.
They  are an opportunity to invite the Indwelling Presence into everything
we  do. Contemplative practices give us the eyes to see and the ears to
hear God calling us to the banquet.

 

Centering Prayer

Though it has acquired other meanings and connotations in recent centuries,
the  word contemplation had a specific meaning for the first 16 centuries of the Christian era. St. Gregory the Great summed up this meaning at the end of the
6th  century as...

Read more

 

Lectio Divina

Centering Prayer was developed as a response to the Vatican II invitation to revive the contemplative teachings of early Christianity and present them in updated formats. In this way, the method of Centering Prayer is drawn from the ancient...

Read more

 

Welcoming Prayer

"The Welcoming Prayer is a method of consenting to God’s presence and action
in  our physical and emotional reactions to events and situations in daily life.
The  purpose of the Welcoming Prayer is to deepen our relationship with God through consenting in the ordinary activities of our day. The Welcoming Prayer helps to dismantle the emotional programs of the false-self system and to heal
the  wounds of a lifetime by addressing them where they are stored — in the body.
It  contributes to the process of transformation in Christ initiated in Centering  Prayer."

 

Getting Started

If you are attracted to the contemplative dimension of Christian teachings and practices and don’t know where to begin, you may find these suggestions useful. Pray for guidance, discernment and wisdom, that you may be clearly guided and ...

Read more

Contact Us

image courtesy of Ron Barnett

Contact Us

Copyright 2016 - All Rights Reserved