Contemplative Outreach

of Northern California

500 De Haro St. San Francisco, CA 94107-2306


Tell your friends about this site. Tell A Friend! 

 Table of contents

From the coordinator

Upcoming events

Father William Meninger on the Enneagram

The Linns on healing

The Linns on critical issues in pastoral care

Introductory workshops

Looking ahead to 2004: Father Thomas Keating to teach in San Francisco, Feb 13 - 15, 2004

Request for support

From the coordinator

The inevitable has happened and soldiers are fighting.  I want to write to you about peacemaking for people who practice centering prayer. 

Religions and spiritual traditions throughout the world teach in various ways that all consciousness or,  perhaps, all life is somehow related.  Contemplatives within those traditions feel themselves related to all reality, often not only to other humans.  They feel related to others through love and a desire to serve actively and the connection nurtured by meditation strengthens and even makes bold a desire to love and serve in real and creative ways. 

Our praying at times of war may include the obvious prayers for a speedy conclusion to the conflict, for safety for all combatants and civilians, and for a lasting and just peace that resolves the root issues.  We will pray from our understanding of what will be the best outcome, of course.  Nevertheless, may I remind us of  another way to pray?

For us who spend some time resting (or agonizing) in the divine presence “beyond words, beyond images, beyond particular intentions,” as Father Thomas teaches, I suggest that our intention simply be to consent to the divine healing in the current crisis.  God is already at work in the most hellacious situations imaginable including the current war.  Let us have faith that our silent consent to God affects the entire created order in ways we do not understand and let us dedicate our prayer to sharing mysteriously the divine peace and healing.   God wants to heal  whole world and knows how to do it.  Let us pray for the eyes to recognize God already at work, the heart to say ‘yes’ to God without fear, and hands willing to work with God.  Who knows what God can do with our open hearts and open hands?

Upcoming events

Father William Meninger will teach the Enneagram on Saturday, May 3, 2003 from 10:00 am to 4:00 pm Saint Gregory of Nyssa Church in San Francisco.   The Enneagram is an ancient Middle Eastern system of personal knowledge and spiritual transformation  known to the Christian monks of the desert in the third century. Some Christians including Father Meninger have recently revived the teaching and integrated it with modern psychology and centering prayer.  Contemplatives can use the Enneagram as a means to diagnose our compulsions, to understand our feelings before we act thoughtlessly, and to cultivate the freedom  that enables us to live our lives more sensitive to God’s leading.   Centering prayer is a way to notice our tendencies to act on our compulsions before we act while the personal knowledge of our Enneagram type enables us to understand the patterns of our lives. 

Suggested contribution $45.00 — no one refused for lack of funds. 

St. Gregory’s is at 500 De Haro Street at Mariposa in San Francisco.  

Father Meninger is one of the three original Trappist monks who has taught Centering Prayer for over 30 years and he has taught the Enneagram for twenty years.  Last year, he presented  workshops on the process of forgiveness in San Francisco, Berkeley, and Sacramento and we are happy to welcome him again.  Register by emailing or call (415)252-1667 or mail your contribution indicating your chosen event. 

You  may print out a flier to share with your friends at

 You may register online.

Dennis Linn, Sheila Fabricant Linn and Matt Linn, S.J. will offer an experiential workshop Healing Life’s Hurts on Saturday October 18 from 9:00 am—5:30 pm at St. Gregory of Nyssa Church.  For many years the Linns have shared simple processes for spiritual, emotional and physical healing through their retreats and workshops in over fifty countries. During their long and fruitful ministry throughout the world, they have thoughtfully integrated spirituality with psychology, medicine and science in their many books, which have sold more than a million copies in English and have been translated into more than twenty languages.  Their books  include Healing Life's Hurts, Sleeping with Bread, Don't Forgive Too Soon and Good Goats:  Healing Our Image of God.   Good Goats is a favorite of the men in the Folsom State Prison centering prayer group and is helpful for anyone who has suffered spiritual abuse.  In my view, they are simply among the best of all the people who teach healing prayer.

$45 suggested contribution.  Register by emailing  or call (415) 252-1667 or mail your contribution indicating your chosen event. 


On Friday, October 17, from 9:00 am—5:00 pm, the Linns will teach Critical Issues in Pastoral Care: Day for Pastoral Ministers, Therapists Spiritual Directors, and Health Care Professionals.  This day will focus on common emotional and spiritual issues that pastoral ministers and health care professionals encounter with clients, students and friends. Specific topics  include the need for a sense of belonging, healing emotional deprivation, anger and forgiveness, unresolved grief, healing prenatal and peri-natal hurts, and hearing the voice of God in everyday life.  

At St. Francis Church, 399 San Fernando Way at Ocean & Junipero Serra Boulevard in San Francisco.  Call Mark at (415) 252-1667 for more details.  $65.00 Suggested contribution. Register by emailing  or call (415) 252-1667 or mail your contribution indicating your chosen event. 


Learning Centering Prayer.  Several introductory workshops are currently scheduled:

¨ Saturday, September 27.  10:00 am —3:00 pm.  Grace Cathedral, Wilsey Conference Center at 1100 California Street in San Francisco Co-sponsored by the Formation for Healing Ministry Programs of the Diocese of California. Suggested contribution $40.00.  Register by emailing or call (415)252-1667 or mail your contribution indicating your chosen event. 

[ Yahoo! Maps ]
Map of 1100 California St
San Francisco, CA 94108-2206

¨ Special day retreat.  “Rest Stop on the Road of Life: a Day Retreat for those between Jobs”   Saturday, April 26. 9:00 am —5:00 pm.  Fireside Room,  Urban Life Center, 1111 O’Farrell Street at Franklin Street, San Francisco.  Free will donations welcome.  Bring your resume.  Call Lynda Grasser– Ross at (510) 235-1149 or email Lynda  to register. 

[ Yahoo! Maps ]
Map of 1111 Ofarrell St
San Francisco, CA 94109-6601

  •  Saturday, November 1  9:-00 am - 1:00 pm.  University of San Francisco at the Lone Mountain Campus, 1300 Funston St.  in San Francisco, CA  94122 at Turk (between Parker and Masonic).  Interfaith Chapel  (Enter front door of main building and follow signs). 

Suggested contribution   $35 (includes 2 follow-up sessions, to be scheduled by the group. 
Register by contacting Catherine Regan   at 415-753-2661 or 415-731-2852 or email Catherine

Retreats.   Mercy Center, Burlingame will sponsor several weekend and a ten day intensive and post-intensive retreat.  Please see the attached  flier for Mercy Center events. 

An invitation to serve. Jesus led by sending people out on mission. In order to welcome and empower people eager to serve, I invite you to share your time and talent.  Please email Mark or call (415)252-1667.

· Newsletter Editor.   A newsletter editor gathers and publicizes information about upcoming events, solicits pertinent articles, and shepherds the newsletter publication. The  editor will consider ways of improving the format and scope of material. 

· Administrative Assistant. An assistant has responsibility to update the database for this newsletter file papers, and take care of general office needs.


Looking ahead to 2004

Father Thomas Keating will teach  in San Francisco during the weekend of February 13—15, 2004.  Please save these dates.  Details forthcoming.    

A request for support.  It costs about $900 to send out this newsletter.  Proceeds from events are just not enough to cover the costs of this newsletter. Your donation of $12, only $1 a month, will be deeply appreciated – and soon will be tax deductible.  To receive this newsletter through email, email Mark Lodico.  To be removed from this mailing list, please send your instructions to the address at the top of this page or call (415) 252-1667.  If you have recently moved or intend to move, please tell us your new address.


We open our awareness to the Ultimate Mystery whom we know by faith is within us, closer than breathing, closer than thinking, closer than choosing--closer than consciousness itself. The Ultimate Mystery is the ground in which our being is rooted, the source from whom our life emerges at every moment."  Father Thomas Keating