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Heart of Texas Contemplative Outreach (HoTCO) is the local chapter of Contemplative Outreach, a spiritual network of individuals and small faith communities committed to living the contemplative dimension of the Gospel, primarily expressed through a commitment to a daily Centering Prayer practice.
 

Save the Date for United in Prayer Day!  
Join us and others around the world on March 21 as we gather for the 28th annual day of prayer on the beautiful campus of Seminary of the Southwest.  The day will include periods of Centering Prayer, a DVD from Contemplative Outreach, Lectio Divina, lunch, and most of all, an inspiring opportunity to be in community with Centering Prayer practitioners from all over central Texas.  Don’t miss this special day!
 
We need volunteers!  Please contact Linda Whiteside to help.
 

Centering Prayer Multi-Day Retreats   
Our next multi-day retreat is the 5-Day Renewal retreat Jan 24-28 (see details below).  In the midst of our busy lives, it is important to take time apart with God.  Like any relationship, our relationship with God is deepened and enriched by some focused, devoted time.  If you have never participated in a Centering Prayer retreat, this is the next step for enhancing your practice! Our multi-day silent retreats take place at Cedarbrake Renewal Center in Belton, TX.  The retreat center is located on 69 beautifully wooded acres with trails for walking, meditation spots, a labyrinth, and access to the Leon River.  Multi-day retreats offer many extended periods of Centering Prayer as well as time for silence and solitude and DVD viewings or conferences on a particular topic.  Please consider attending one of the many wonderful half-day, one-day and multi-day retreats that are available during the year.  Check out the new list of retreats for 2020 on our website.
 


 
When you plan to attend a retreat at The Church of Conscious Harmony or at Cedarbrake Renewal Center, please pre-register by calling Lisa Genung at 512-347-9673.

 
Centering Prayer One-Day and Half-Day Retreats are held on Saturdays once a month throughout the year at The Church of Conscious Harmony in Austin.  These Saturday retreats offer a wonderful opportunity for silence and solitude without going out of town.  December’s retreat had over 50 attendees!  They are growing in popularity, so make sure to pre-register with the church office by Friday (see box above).  The next one-day retreat is Jan 18 (see listing below).
 
 
Waco Centering Prayer group at St. Paul’s Episcopal Church
 
Did you know that we have a Centering Prayer group in Waco, TX?  Elizabeth Smith, the group’s leader, says, “We meet in the chapel at St. Paul’s Episcopal Church in downtown Waco at noon almost every Thursday.  Visitors are always welcome and sporadic attendance is not a problem. Our group is very ecumenical.  Churches attended by those pictured include Baptist, Episcopal, Orthodox, and Roman Catholic.”   You can contact Elizabeth at ebssmith@yahoo.com .   
 

If you would like to share a photo and information about your Centering Prayer group, please send it to Jan Reed.
 


12-Step Outreach is led by Emily Haeussler and presenters are being trained.  If you are interested, please contact Emily at Emily@CenteredEating.com.
 
Welcoming Prayer workshops are now available to the HoTCO community.  If you are interested in a one-day workshop or a series of evening workshops, please contact Pamela Begeman for more information.
 
 


Upcoming Centering Prayer Activities
 
1.  Centering Prayer One-Day Retreat – Jan 18*
2.  Centering Prayer Introductory Workshop – Jan 18**
3.  Centering Prayer 5-day Renewal Retreat – Jan 24-28
4.  Centering Prayer One-Day Retreat – Feb 5
5.  Centering Prayer 2-Day Commuter Retreat – Feb 22-23
6.  Save the Date:  United in Prayer Day – March 21
 
 
1.  Centering Prayer One-day Retreat – Jan 18*
Church of Conscious Harmony
Saturday, Jan 18, 8:30am to 4:30pm.  The day includes a light breakfast and fellowship during registration, a morning prayer session of 2 thirty-minute periods, Lectio Divina, the option of either an afternoon prayer session of 2 thirty-minute prayer periods or a Fr. Keating lecture video, several periods of silence and solitude, and lunch in silence on the beautiful church grounds.  Bring a brown bag lunch.  A love offering of $20 is suggested. For more information and to pre-register, please contact the church at 512-347-9673.
 
2.  Centering Prayer Introductory Workshop – Jan 18**
Church of Conscious Harmony
Saturday, Jan 18, 9am – 12pm.  Doors open at 8:30 for refreshments and check-in.  This is a 7-week course in forming a daily Centering Prayer practice.  The cost is $35 and includes Thomas Keating’s book “Open Mind, Open Heart.” The class will meet on Saturday and then for 6 consecutive Monday evenings at 7:30-9pm. When the Saturday class ends, you have the option to stay and join the concurrently running 1-day retreat at no extra cost. If you plan to stay, please bring your lunch. Retreat ends at 4pm. Please pre-register in the church office or call 512-347-9673.
 
3.  Centering Prayer 5-day Renewal Retreat – Jan 24-28
Cedarbrake Renewal Center, Belton, TX
Renew your relationship with God at this 5-day retreat.  Days usually include at least 3 extended periods of Centering Prayer, the Eucharist, some instruction by video or presentation, and some time for solitude.  To pre-register, please call 512-347-9673.  For more information, please visit the HoTCO website.
 
4.  Centering Prayer One-Day Retreat – Feb 5
Church of Conscious Harmony
Wednesday, Feb 5, 8:30am to 5:30pm.  The day includes a light breakfast and fellowship during registration, a morning prayer session of 2 thirty-minute periods, Lectio Divina, the option of either an afternoon prayer session of 2 thirty-minute prayer periods or a Fr. Keating lecture video, several periods of silence and solitude, and lunch in silence on the beautiful church grounds.  Suggested love offering of $20 – please bring your lunch.  Optional 7:00am start in Theosis Chapel and 6:30pm Midweek Contemplative Communion Service. For more information and to pre-register, please contact the church at 512-347-9673.
 
5.  Centering Prayer 2-Day Commuter Retreat – Feb 22-23
Church of Conscious Harmony
Here’s a retreat format for those who can't take a 5-day or 10-day retreat this year. Retreatants sleep at home and return the next day. This “Preparation for Lent” retreat will take place on Saturday, Feb 22, 8:30am to 4pm and will continue on Sunday, Feb 23 at 12:30 to 4pm. Cost is $50 which includes both days, and scholarships are available.  Please pre-register at The Church of Conscious Harmony, 512-347-9673. 

6.  Save the Date:  United in Prayer Day – March 21
Seminary of the Southwest, Austin, TX
Saturday, March 21, 9am – 3pm.  Join us and others around the world as we gather for the 28th annual day of prayer on the beautiful campus of Seminary of the Southwest.  The day will include periods of Centering Prayer, a DVD from Contemplative Outreach, Lectio Divina, lunch, and most of all, an inspiring opportunity to be in community with Centering Prayer practitioners from all over central Texas.  Don’t miss this special day!
 
 
Other Upcoming Contemplative Activities
The following events are not focused on Centering Prayer specifically but share the theme of contemplative spirituality and might serve to enrich the spiritual life of Centering Prayer practitioners.
 
Stress-Reduction Meditation Workshop for Healthcare Providers – Jan 18
Seton Cove
Saturday, Jan 18, 9am – 3pm, Dr. Anna Vu Wallace will lead this workshop where attendees will learn and practice a simple mindfulness, evidenced based method to reduce stress based. For more information and to register, visit this link.
 
Eremos Women’s Weekend Retreat – Feb 7-9
Cedarbrake Renewal Center, Belton, TX

Join us for a weekend that encourages you to be silent.  Whether we live alone or with others, taking time to be in silence at home can be a challenge. The Eremos Retreat supports you in experiencing the gift of silence and will be a blend of time in community and time alone.  There will be opportunities for quiet, contemplation, conversation, connection and laughter.  For more information and to register, please visit this link.
 
 
HoTCO’s Mission is to support individuals and groups in our area who want to deepen their relationship with God through the practice of Centering Prayer. This Newsletter encourages the spirit of a larger contemplative community by communicating and promoting activities that serve this mission.  Visit the HoTCO website for information on contemplative services, prayer groups, introductory workshops, retreats, and events.  Connect with the HoTCO Facebook page or the HoTCO MeetUp page.
 
Centering Prayer Resources:  HoTCO has resources for prayer groups, such as the 28 DVD set of The Spiritual Journey with Fr. Thomas Keating, a collection of appropriate books to sell at workshops and retreats, and trained presenters willing to conduct a seven-week course on The Introduction to Centering Prayer.  For more information, please contact Chapter Co-Coordinators, David Wallace or Linda Whiteside.
 

If your church or organization has information on contemplative activities that are appropriate for the newsletter, please submit information to jjllreed@sbcglobal.net.  If you would like to be more involved with HoTCO, please consider attending a quarterly membership meeting.
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Heart of Texas Chapter - Contemplative Outreach, Ltd.
7406 Newhall Lane
Austin, Texas 78746

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