Living a Joyful Contemplative Life

The contemplative life is found in an awareness of the sacredness of each moment.  If we are always thinking about the past or worrying about the future, we are missing out on life!  Practicing the Presence of God, we learn to be in the moment, experiencing the Divine, God, in every moment.

Be still and know that I am God.—Psalm 46:10

Stillness is not just the absence of “noise” around us; it is a connection with God beyond words. It encompasses a quality of peace and detachment from the inner and outer world. To enjoy inner peace takes prayer, meditation and spiritual ritual. Once we have learned how to quiet our mind, we are able to connect with God more easily and enjoy peaceful moments in all we do.

Contemplative retreats help us achieve this. Many of us are aware of moments when we are truly awake to the beauty of our lives; those moments when we feel most connected to God. What we don’t know is how to be present to such moments more often. Others have lost that connection and yearn for it. If we learn how to be present to the mystery of our lives as they are, we will be more joyous and able to grow deeply into our faith.

Frederick Buechner said it beautifully:

Listen to your life. See it for the fathomless mystery it is. In the boredom and pain of it no less than in the excitement and gladness: touch, taste, smell your way to the holy and hidden heart of it because in the last analysis all moments are key moments, and life itself is grace.

We all need to set time apart from our daily lives to see more clearly what it is we need to change and how to grow into the selves God created us to be. A contemplative retreat gives us  the rest we need and the connection to God, ourselves and others.

My first goal during a retreat is to create an atmosphere of trust, love and intimacy, so everyone feels comfortable about sharing as intimately as comfortable. In such an atmosphere connection happens in a miraculous way. Sharing with each other — and being still with each other — helps us to heal and integrate what has interrupted our life energy.

We are mirrors of each other. If we open up to this truth and look carefully at what we see in others, we can save years of therapy and pain. When we embrace the truth that we “can see the speck in our friend’s eye but don’t notice the log in our own eye,” we can start healing in unexpected ways.

Bringing quiet and peace to your mind and helping you to listen to God within is the main focus of my work. It is where true healing begins.


After 43 years in pastoral ministry, at moments I am still awakened and surprised by God’s goodness. Such a moment of goodness visited when my wife, Mary and I attended a contemplative retreat conducted by Bettina Schuller. The presence of God’s gentleness pervaded the space of our gathering. The recovery of the place of silence began to refocus itself, as the heart began to find rest and comfort. Yet at an even deeper level as we entered this transforming moment, we were being challenged to live from these deeper places. We were sent forth to share and witness this peace and comfort, this healing in silence, with our troubled distracted world. It was a profound transforming moment for both of us.-Rev. Liam Collins, Savannah, Georgia.



Due to Covid 19, I am not offering any in-person retreats. I accommodate any individual or group retreats on zoom if requested.

Please contact me with any questions.

Offered Retreat Topics

If you would like to host a retreat, spiritual renewal day, quiet day or workshop on one of these topics, please contact me.

  • Contemplative Prayer
  • Centering Prayer
  • Practicing the Presence of God
  • Spiritual Self Care
  • Discerning God’s Will
  • God’s Unconditional Love
  • Living a Contemplative Life
  • Listening with Contemplative Hearts