Dearest monks and artists,
We have lots of wonderful things in store for you this year!
Lift Every Voice Book Club
One of our new offerings will be a monthly book club called Lift Every Voice: Contemplative Writers of Color. The Christian contemplative tradition is largely dominated by the European mystics. With the rise in awareness around the rich diversity of voices available to us, we wanted to explore what our understanding of Christian mysticism and contemplative practice would look like through the lens of writers of color. How might we be enriched by other perspectives?
I am delighted to be joined by author Claudia Love Mair in a monthly conversation on this very question. We have selected 11 books (we will take July as a sabbatical) and the last Wednesday of each month we will post a video conversation around one of the books. We then invite conversation and reflection in our dedicated Facebook group (click the link to request to join us).
You, as a member of this community, are invited to purchase and read the books in advance and participate actively in this journey of deepening, discovery, and transformation. There is no other cost to this program than buying the book each month (or borrowing from the library). We will provide spaces for conversation online and in our Holy Disorder of Dancing Monks Facebook group so you can contribute to our growing vision.
This is a free series, the only cost for you is buying the books and we encourage you to support your local bookseller. We have provided links to Bookshop.org who sources from independent stores.
I am excited to begin with our first Featured Book for February 2021! God Alone is Enough: A Spirited Journey with Teresa of Avila was written by Claudia Love Mair and gives us a conversation between a modern black woman and a 15th century Spanish mystic. Claudia’s writing style is so accessible and makes Teresa of Avila into a dear friend you want to spend time with.
Well-known author Phyllis Tickle described it as: "the kind of book that a serious Christian has to thank God for. It only illuminates and opens St. Teresa of Avila in a profound and intimate way. I cannot recommend this book too highly or, I suspect, even adequately. Read it and you will see what I mean."
Join us on January 27, 2021 for the first video recording of our book conversation!
Give Me a Word Winners
We also want to announce the winners of our random drawing for those who participated in Give Me a Word 2021, a free gift we offer at the turning of every calendar year!
The winners are:
- Space in our online Lent 2021 retreat on the Desert Mothers and Fathers
- Barbara Dress Herr McCann – Presence
- Choice of our self-study online retreats
- Kathleen Middleton – Grace
- covenantwmn -Serve
- Dolores Nice-Siegenthaler – Mother
- Liz Nau – Courage
- One signed copy of The Wisdom of Wild Grace: Poems by Christine Valters Paintner
- Debbie B ~ Stillness
- One signed copy of Dreaming of Stones: Poems by Christine Valters Paintner
- Rebecca Przybylski ~ Possibility
- One signed copy of Earth, Our Original Monastery: Cultivating Wonder & Gratitude through Intimacy with Nature by Christine Valters Paintner
- Roxanne ~ Trust
Please get in touch with us to redeem your prizes.
Thank you to everyone who shared a word for the year, it is always so inspiring to read them all and the reasons they are meaningful for you.
Earth Monastery Prayer Cycle Complete! Celebrate with us!
And last, but not least, our final episode of our Earth Monastery Prayer Cycle is available today. See the links at the top of this email for the audio and video podcasts. We are so thrilled to now have a full week of morning and evening prayers Abbey-style available for you to pray with on your own or with your community as a free resource. I am especially grateful to Betsey Beckman, Simon de Voil, and Richard Bruxvoort Colligan, without whom these audio and video resources would not be possible.
We are hosting a live event next Sunday, January 17th at 8 pm Ireland/UK time (3 pm Eastern / 12 noon Pacific) to celebrate the completion of this cycle. Join us for song, movement, reflection, meditation, and shared prayer. You can sign up to join us live at this link. The event will be recorded and shared on our website as well.
With great and growing love,
Christine Valters Paintner, PhD, REACE