Jesus, a Spiritual Director

with Steve Garnaas-Holmes

In person and on Zoom

Wednesday, Nov. 17, 2021

7:30PM to 9:00PM

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For many people, Jesus is not a person but a thing, an idea, an object of belief, or essentially a movie character (in a film they're never seen); or the kind of invisible friend of “Jesus is my copilot” bumper stickers. But Jesus is more real than that—and more complicated. He’s a theological figure (Messiah, Son of God), an archetypal character (trickster, Wisdom teacher, Cosmic Christ) and also a personal friend, an intercessor, a healer, a listener.

So how do we relate to this guy? For some, Jesus is coming in judgment, and you'd better “up your game” or be very afraid. Well, that's not right. But if Jesus isn't coming to shame us, what does it mean for Jesus to judge us, or admonish us, or even just teach us something new?

Some ask “What would Jesus do?” But that's a fraught question: his own disciples standing right in front of him couldn't predict what he would do. Some say “Jesus told me...” Does Jesus talk to us? Some say yes, Jesus conveys the truth to us. But how? How do we listen for Jesus and really hear the Living Word, not just a projection of what's in our heads?

Let’s explore how to not just believe in Jesus but to interact with him, as one whose spirit works in harmony with ours. Maybe we can discover how Jesus can be our spiritual director.

 

Steve Garnaas-Holmes is a retired United Methodist pastor and the author of Unfolding Light--a daily reflection rooted in a contemplative, Creation-centered spirituality, often

inspired by his daily walk in the woods. In poems, parables, psalms, thoughts and the odd weather report, Steve hopes to invite readers into a spirit of presence, compassion, justice and delight. He and his wife live in Maine. They have three adult sons whom they love dearly.

Email the Center at info@centerforspiritualdeepening.org to request the Zoom link

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Labyrinths

St. Aidan’s has two labyrinths for walking prayer and meditation. The outdoor labyrinth, located between the memorial garden and Riverside Road, is always available. The labyrinth in the church is available most of the year and is used during special services and retreats. We can also arrange to open the church at other times for those who would like to walk the labyrinth.

Up Next
Dec. 15 at 7:30 pm

Healing Arts:
Music, Poetry & Prayer
for a Busy Season
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Continuing Classes and Offerings

Sacred Ground:

A Series of Conversations on Race and Faith

Sept. 12, 26

Oct. 10, 24

Nov. 7, 14

1PM-3PM

We invite you to join in Sacred Ground, a curriculum that calls us to read, watch and learn about the history of race and racism in America. In six sessions this fall, we will explore together an online curriculum that focuses on Indigenous, Black, Latino and Asian/Pacific Americans as their histories intersect with European American history, and the impact of it all on our world today.  To register, email info@centerforspiritualdeepening.org.

Meditations on
the Gospel of Thomas

1st and 3rd Thursdays, 7:30 pm  Zoom

The Gospel of Thomas is new to most of us and it is at the same time ancient.  It may well be the oldest of the gospel writings.  This gathering of sayings of Jesus seems to have been a source for the writers of the canonical gospels.  The sayings from this text, which was found in a cave in Egypt in 1945, have contributed to a new appreciation of Jesus as a wisdom teacher in the Eastern tradition.  We meet twice a month to work with one or two of the 114 sayings through lectio divina, or sacred listening.  All are welcome for this reflection/meditation/discussion gathering.  You do not need to have attended previous meetings to participate.  
Soul Circle 
2nd and 4th Thursdays, 7:30 p.m.  Zoom

We gather on these Thursdays for conversation about the Spiritual Life.  We meet in this community of others who, with us, long to become the sound, whole persons our traditions tell us we were created to become.  The leader for the evening opens with a reading, we share the guidelines for welcoming conversation, then those who wish to are invited to speak about the experience of trying to live intentionally the life to which they feel called.
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Silent Prayer, & Meditation

In the Sanctuary on Tuesday mornings

via Zoom on Friday mornings

at 8:00 am

We light a candle and spend 25 minutes in silence. The last person out of the room blows out the candle. It is that simple. Those who seek to include meditation in their weekly practice often find it easier to do so in the company of others.

 Spiritual Direction
Group Spiritual Direction
New groups will be forming in January, 2022
Contact Lisa Richard at 
info@centerforspiritualdeepening.com 
if you are interested in joining a group or in learning more.
 
The singular intention of spiritual direction is companionship and support in our relationship with the “something greater” that we sense at work in our lives. In group spiritual direction, we form a community with others who share our desire for connection to the divine other. We agree to accompany and support one another on our spiritual journeys.
The process centers around silence. Trusting that the spirit is present within and among us, we weave into the sharing of our stories and experiences quiet space to sense that presence. Group members may offer a question or a reflection that comes out of our prayerful listening. At other times, silent prayer for the other will be the richest offering. 
If you feel you may be called to go deeper by discerning in community, or if you have questions and would like to know more, contact Lisa Richard. One group has already begun and meets on a monthly basis. Additional groups of three to five people may form at any time during the year when there is interest.
One-on-One Spiritual Direction
 
Tilden Edwards writes in Spiritual Director, Spiritual Companion of our yearning “…for a soul-friend with whom we can share our desire for the Holy One and with whom we can try to identify and embrace the hints of divine Presence and invitation in our lives. Neither soul-friends nor anyone else can fully enter our deep soul space. However, they can listen to our articulations of it, silently open these to God as soon as they are heard, and occasionally speak when something is heard in that openness that seems to be meant for [us].”
A spiritual director (or guide, or companion, or friend) is someone who holds a space for our stories of the journey and listens with us for the workings of that greater “something.” The work of the Spirit in our lives can often be heard in our own voices--seen in our own faces and our own eyes. Companions on the journey can hold up the mirror that lets us see it. 
If you feel you may be called to one-on-one spiritual direction, or if you have questions and would like to know more, contact Lisa Richard . We have contact information for a number of local directors and can help you connect with them. Note that directors generally meet with people once a month; some charge a fee, while others do not. Each director’s approach is different, so it can help to talk with more than one before you make your decision.