Monday, January 19, 2015

Silent Places - Silence Appreciation 101b

Silence and sabbaths and Sundays have a bunch in common, in particular their intention to holiness. Each in it's own way helps the practitioner find a moment or sense of being set apart.  The quintessential state of each of these practices is rest, just like God's on the seventh day of creation.
Sometimes we need to get away physically, geographically, actively in order for the moment to have its . . . moment.  There always has been and always will be some places better than others, just like there are times better than others.  Below is a list of places that are ready for you to find a moment of silence and in most cases an extended moment so that you can develop a practice of stillness, centeredness and rest.
This list is just below the tip of the iceberg.  There are many, many more options.  The tip is how we enter and on many occasions exit our worship on Sundays right here in Madison.  Episcopalians are known for the quiet way we begin our Sundays in the church.  Many or most of us kneel in silent prayer, settling, centering, and readying ourselves to join all those other acts and moments to which we are called in corporate worship.
Granted silent prayer is hard for those of us who are just happy to see our friends and almost too ready to catch-up with whatever news or questions we have.  For the most part though we are still the quiet ones -- didn't someone famously call us the "frozen chosen?" -- when we pray and especially when we enter with our hearts yearning for God's presence.
I suppose I could list Church of the Advent seeing as that we are a destination for so many and so many others who are often not with us on Sunday morning.  We'll spend more time on that consideration in a later installment.

Retreat Centers

Episcopal Convent of St. Helena - Augusta, Georgia

Green Bough House of Prayer - Scott, Georgia

478-668-4758, Rt. 1, Box 65A, Adrian, GA 31002
East of Dublin in Middle Georgia, this ecumenical retreat house offers scripture-centered silent and guided retreats as well as Centering Prayer workshops and sabbatical space.

Ingrid's Oasis - Stone Mountain, Georgia

Offers a space and time to explore, reflect upon and deepen one's relationship with God. Personal silent retreats, quiet days for individuals or for small groups, and spiritual guidance by a certified spiritual director.

St. Mary's Sewanee Center for Spiritual Development- Sewanee, Tennessee   800-728-1659
Near the University of the South and the School of Theology, this center offers many quality retreats throughout the year, with space for group retreats, individual guided retreats, and silent retreats, and Contemplative Outreach Centering Prayer workshops and retreats.

Monastery of the Holy Spirit - Conyers, Georgia

770-483-8705   2625 Highway 212 SW, Conyers, GA 30094-4044
Monday-Saturday 10:00 AM to 5:00 PM

Ignatius House Retreat Center

404-255-0503  6700 Riverside Drive Northwest, Atlanta, GA 30328
We offer to all, group and individually directed retreats, spiritual direction, companionship and spiritual counseling. Our ministry is based on Ignatian Spirituality and the Spiritual Exercises of St. Ignatius Loyola;a journey in meditation, praying the scriptures and finding God in all things.

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