Visit the Abbey of the Arts online retreat platform to access your programs:

Hildegard of Bingen and the Vision of Divine Love

with Christine Valters Paintner and Betsey Beckman

Saturday, September 17, 2022

9am-12pm Pacific

12-3pm Eastern

5-8 pm Ireland/UK time

Program Description

This retreat is part of our 10 month series The Mystical Heart: Love as a Creative Force. Register for each retreat individually or the full series with an additional facilitated forum for sharing between retreats.

Love lives in everything, from the deepest depths to the highest stars.

Caritas Abundat, Antiphon, Hildegard of Bingen

Hildegard of Bingen was a 12th century German Benedictine Abbess and mystic known for her powerful visions. In the third book of her theology, the Book of Divine Works, several of the illustrations presents us with her Vision of Divine Love or Caritas. Love appears as the soul of the world, the Creatrix of all that is, the living fountain that offers replenishment, and as existing in the center of the wheel of eternity.

She writes: “I am the fiery life of the essence of divinity; I flame above the beauty of the fields, and I shine in the waters, and I burn in the sun, the moon, and the stars. With the airy wind I quicken all things with some invisible life that sustains them all.”

Join us on September 17th, Hildegard’s feast day for an online retreat experience. Together we will explore her visions of Love through a variety of contemplative practices including visio divina, writing explorations with her symbols, and praying with her music. We will contemplate what it means for Love to be the “supreme and fiery force” that both sparked and sustains creation and take this into an embodied exploration through gentle movement where we might discover new dimensions of Love living within our hearts. There will also be an opportunity for sharing in small groups and name your emerging vision of Love inspired by Hildegard’s work. 

The retreat will be recorded and made available within 48-72 hours of the program.

Your Guides for the Journey


Christine Valters Paintner, PhD, REACE

Christine Valters Paintner, PhD, REACE is the online Abbess for Abbey of the Arts, a virtual monastery and global community integrating contemplative practice and creative expression. Her programs draw on the wisdom of the desert, Celtic, and Benedictine spiritual traditions as well as the joy of the expressive arts, embodied practice, and Earth-cherishing wisdom. Christine is the author of numerous books on spirituality and creativity, including three collections of poetry. She lives on the west coast of Ireland with her husband John and dog Sourney. Find out more about her here.

Betsey Beckman, MM

Betsey Beckman, MM  is nationally acclaimed as a spirited dancer, storyteller, teacher of SpiritPlay and dancing Spiritual Director. She fell in love with Hildegard von Bingen in the 1980s when she developed a dance-drama depicting the Abbess’ life story, thereby discovering a spiritual mentor in Hildegard’s embrace of the arts, preaching, and healing practices. With her extensive repertory of sacred storydances, she is regularly featured as artist/presenter at national conventions as well as local churches. She earned her Masters in Ministry degree from Seattle University, her certificate in Movement Therapy from the Institute for Transformational Movement, and is a certified InterPlay leader. As dancer, choreographer, author, mother, wife, teacher and spiritual director, she is passionate about living life fully and fostering creativity in all those with whom she shares life and ministry. Betsey’s publications include books (she is co-author of Awakening the Creative Spirit: Bringing the Expressive Arts to Spiritual Direction), producer of Abbey of the Arts CDs and The Dancing Word series of DVDs on embodied prayer. She offers the gift of playful improvisation whenever possible. Vist Betsey’s website. 


Your registration constitutes an agreement with our online program Terms and Conditions below.

We offer a sliding scale of 3 fees for payment. The reduced fee for those who have lost their income and the sponsorship fee helps support our ability to offer scholarships. In an effort to keep this program accessible, please carefully consider both your own resources as well as honoring the expense, time, and energy required to run these programs and keep our work sustainable. Thank you!
Please be careful to enter your correct email address when you register. 
All prices displayed in USD.


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If you need a different payment plan or a greater scholarship to make this program accessible, please get in touch with us.

Terms and Conditions

Please consider your purchase carefully and review the many free materials we have on our website to make sure the program will be a good fit or get in touch with any questions.

We ask that you honor our work by not sharing the program materials with others who are not enrolled.

Please contact us for permission to quote in settings beyond the program

These videos are made available to registered participants and may also be included in future versions of the program including self-study. If you choose to speak during a recorded gathering, you are giving us your consent to record that contribution. If you prefer not to be seen or heard, you can of course switch off or mute your camera or microphone at any time. Chat sessions are recorded and posted as well. Participation in the chat function is also giving consent to their recording. Breakout groups are never recorded.

If you choose a payment plan and stop payment before fulfilling the commitment without contacting us to make other arrangements, your access to the program will be removed.