Recent Events 2018

Saturday, October 6, 2018

Centering Prayer and Enrichment Day

The Path of Descent is the Path of Transformation

At the end of August 2018, the Center for Action and Contemplation broadcast a conference that was part of the CONSPIRE 2018 series, based on Richard Rohr’s Seven Themes of an Alternative Orthodoxy.

The pattern of down and up, loss and renewal, enslavement and liberation, exile and return is quite clear in the Hebrew Scriptures. Through his own journey, Jesus modeled this counter-intuitive wisdom: “Unless the grain of wheat dies, it remains just a grain of wheat. But if it dies, it bears much fruit.” To avoid the death of our small, separate self is to avoid transformation into God, into union with one another, into something more. We must lose our life to find our life.
— from the CAC website

On October 6, join Contemplative Outreach Northeast Ohio for a time of Centering Prayer and contemplative teachings, practices, and reflection with videos featuring Richard Rohr, Barbara Holmes, Brian McLaren, Barbara Brown Taylor, and Mirabai Starr. Conspirare. Let’s breathe together. Inhale and exhale, listen and share, let go and receive. Open heart, mind, and body to the surprising wisdom to be found in darkness and descent.

Registration required for lunch planning.
NO FEE. Free will offering will be accepted.

Location and Directions

Laurel Lake Retirement Community
200 Laurel Lake Drive
Hudson, Ohio 44236

Date and Time

Saturday, October 6, 2018
9:00 a.m. to 1:30 p.m.
(Please arrive early so we can begin promptly at 9:00.)

Contact Information

To RSVP for this event, please contact Josefina Fernandez no later than October 3 at email or phone (440) 590-2473.

Saturday, October 27, 2018

Silent Saturday Day of Prayer

Contemplative Outreach Northeast Ohio (CONEO) and Holy Martyrs Church in Medina, Ohio, will host a Silent Saturday Day of Prayer on October 27, 2018. Join us for a morning of centering prayer and reflection as we seek to deepen our relationship with God through our relationship with all of creation. Our readings will present the concept of voluntary simplicity and our place in the environment as it relates to social justice and scripture.

To help us keep the event on schedule, we recommend arriving early to allow time for socializing, coffee and refreshments. 

If this is your first time attending a CONEO event or your first time attending centering prayer, we look forward to having you with us! Someone will be available for a brief introduction about centering prayer before we begin at 9 o’clock.

To help us plan, please RSVP using the contact information below.

Location and Directions

Holy Martyrs Church
Martyrs Hall (in back of the church)
3100 Weymouth Road
Medina, OH 44256
[link to Google maps]

The church is very close to I-77.

Date and Time

Saturday, October 27, 2018
8:30 a.m. to 12 p.m.
(Registration begins at 8:30 a.m., Centering Prayer beings at 9:00 a.m. Please be on time.)

Contact Information

To RSVP or for more information about this event, please contact Kate Valentine at email or by phone at (330) 472-0072.

Promotional Flyer

Help us spread the word about the Silent Saturday Day of Prayer by printing the flyer at the attached link and sharing it with your church, office, school, friends and family. Or share it on Facebook!

Link to promotional flyer

Recent Events

Friday, May 4 through Sunday, May 6, 2018

Contemplative Spring Retreat

Retreat Presenter, Martin Laird, O.S.A.
Father Martin Laird is Professor of Early Christian Studies at Villanova University. Fr. Laird’s published works include Into the Silent Land and A Sunlit Absence. This retreat offers time and space away from the busyness of daily life and allows the body, mind, and spirit to surrender to God’s presence and action within each one of us.

Location and Directions
Villa Maria Eduction and Spirituality Center
225 Villa Marie Road
Pulaski, PA 16143
[link to Villa Maria website]

March 10, 2018

United in Prayer Day

Location and Directions
Laurel Lake Retirement Community
200 Laurel Lake Drive
Hudson, OH 44236
[link to church website]

Registration/Check-in: 8:30 a.m.
Event: 9:00 a.m. to 2:30 p.m.

January 21, 2017

Silent Day of Prayer

Saturday, January, 21 2017
9:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m.

St. Basil the Great Catholic Church
8700 Brecksville Road
Brecksville, OH 44141
(At the Parish Life Center behind the church.)

March 11, 2017

Centering Prayer Introductory Workshop

Saturday, March 11, 2017 
9:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m.

Federated Church
76 Bell Street
Chagrin Falls, OH 44022

March 18, 2017

United in Prayer Day

Saturday, March 18, 2017
9:00 a.m. to 2:30 p.m.

Laurel Lake Retirement Community
200 Laurel Lake Drive
Hudson, OH, 44236

Click here for more information about United in Prayer Day.

April 6, 2017

Webinar Trinity: the Soul of Creation

Thursday through Saturday, April 6 – 8, 2017 
St. Mathew’s Episcopal Church, Brecksville, Ohio

A live broadcast of the conference Trinity: the Soul of Creation, being presented by Richard Rohr, Cynthia Bourgeault and William Paul Young in Albuquerque, New Mexico. Click here for more information about the topic of the conference.

June 10, 2017

Silent Saturday

Saturday, June 10, 2017 from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m.

St. Paul’s Episcopal Church
2747 Fairmount Boulevard
Cleveland Heights, Ohio

Several sessions of sitting Centering Prayer, readings and quiet reflection.

August 11 – 13, 2017

St. Theresa of Avila and the Interior Castle

Friday through Sunday, August 11 – 13, 2017

River’s Edge
3430 Rocky River Drive
Cleveland, Ohio
[link to website]

A special Retreat / Conference weekend presented by Susan Komis, allowing sacred space and time to explore the Seven Mansions of Teresa of Avila’s Interior Castle. Together we reflected on the light of Teresa’s timeless insights into the human soul, its journey towards God, and how Teresa’s teaching is relevant to our personal contemporary spiritual journey. This retreat/conference included presentations, small group discussion with periods of Centering Prayer, reflection and silence. Suggested reading for this special event was “The Interior Castle,” from the Collected Works of Teresa, Vol. II, translation by Kavanaugh & Rodriguez.

September 30, 2017

Centering Prayer Introductory Workshop

Location and Directions

Holy Martyrs Catholic Church
3100 Old Weymouth Road
Medina, Ohio 44256
[link to church website]

Date and Time

Saturday, September 30, 2017 
9:00 a.m. to 12:00 noon
(Registration begins at 9:00 a.m., the Workshop begins at 9:30 a.m.)

Follow-up sessions October 7 and October 14.

Contact Information

To RSVP or for more information, contact Kate Valentine at email or by phone at (330) 659-6356.

October 7, 2017

Silent Saturday

Location and Directions

St. Christopher’s Parish
20141 Detroit Road
Rocky River, Ohio 44116
[link to church website]

Date and Time
Saturday, October 7, 2017
8:30 a.m. to 12 p.m.
(Registration begins at 8:30 a.m., Centering Prayer beings at 9:00 a.m.)

Contact Information

To RSVP or for more information, contact Darlene Sasz at email or by phone at (440) 331-0903.

December 7, 14 and 21, 2017

Centering Prayer Introductory Workshop

Location and Directions

Church of St. Dominic
3450 Norwood Road
Shaker Heights, OH 44122
[link to church website]

Date and Time

Thursday, December 7, 14 and 21, 2017 
7:00 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.
(Please plan to arrive early so the workshop can begin promptly at 7 o’clock.)

Contact Information

To RSVP or for more information, contact the parish office at St. Dominic via email or by phone at (216) 991-1444.

Leadership Meeting November 12, 2016


November 12, 2016

Team Meeting

St. Mathew’s Episcopal Church, Brecksville, OH


Mike Davault                                    Jackie Fabian                                    Chris Grostic, Coordinator                  Marilyn Mack         Nancy Moran                   Suzanne Sweeney                  Juanita Vargo


Chris Grostic, Coordinator, opened the meeting @ 9:35 a.m. after prayer.

Silent Saturday Retreat Report:

Jackie Fabian reported that 25 people attended the retreat on October 29th @ St. Rita Parish, Solon, OH.

Participant feedback was very positive. The team consensus was that it was one of the best retreat days that has occurred.

Jackie stated that Josefina Fernandez had reported to her that St. Basil in Brecksville would be interested in doing the next Silent Saturday in January.

Theological Principles:

Chris Grostic believed that it was time to release again the Theological Principles of CONEO. It lists  the limitations set by the International Contemplative Outreach on our ministry We must also be aware of our own limitations: the number of team members available to do any expansion. We are already limited by the shortage of volunteers available to do retreats, etc.

Every CONEO group has its own personality based on their leadership and they are at liberty to include in their meetings anything that will enrich the group to fill the goals of contemplative prayer.

Appreciation Luncheon & Awards

The Appreciation Luncheon on November 6th was very successful due to the careful planning of Josefina Fernandez and the support of Chris and Steve Gotch. Thank you notes will be sent to Chris and Steve for the use of their facilities and the fine food selection.

Communication to Prayer Groups:

Mike Devault will be going on vacation until February. Before he leaves he will send out one more e-mail communication to the prayer groups. Suzanne Sweeney volunteered to take over his library duties until he returns, including keeping track of the sales. He has developed a list of 10 books to be recommended to new prayer group members.

Mike intends to visit the Epiphany Episcopal Church, Euclid before he leaves. They have a large ecumenical gathering each year. Mike has already visited the prayer groups at: St. Rita, St. Mary of the Assumption and St. Paul in Canton.


Chris Grostic advised that Brian Smith, our Communications Coordinator, reported that we had e-mail issues in our last mailing. We are transitioning to a new system and some addresses did not transfer over. There are 600 on our list, but 180 were listed as unsubscribed and some team members did not receive the communications. We will work on this to clear up the problems before the next meeting.

Mike Devault advised he is sending a final prayer group and team member listing. Members should check their own e-mail addresses to make sure they are correct.


Chris Grostic requested that prayer group leaders should make sure their members know who the new team leaders are and their responsibilities.

Chris stated that CONEO meetings should be attended by Team Leaders. Any prayer group member that wishes to attend a Team Meeting; e.g. December 10, is welcome to attend.


Nancy Moran stated that requiring a member to do both a workshop and the follow-up meetings is too stressful, as the preparation time, travel time and teaching responsibilities are very intense. She suggested that the retreat leader be relieved of the follow-up responsibilities. The team agreed.


Chris Grostic stated that the Federated Family Life Center in Chagrin Falls wanted us to do an Intro Workshop in the first quarter of 2017. Federated wants to increase their membership to either start a new group or use as a filler to already established groups. We need a presenter and a Book Table representative.

Any other prayer group that wants an Introductory Workshop should call Chris Grostic.


Nancy Moran reported that Villa Maria is inviting James Finley June 23-25, 2017. She suggested that we cooperate with Villa Maria by offering to lead prayer after the lectures, ask if we can put out our advertising on their hospitality table or getting a block of rooms that our prayer groups can have access to, if they want to attend. Chris Grostic suggested that this be discussed in January after our own Introductory Workshop is completed.

Nancy Moran, also, stated that the Erie, PA Contemplative Outreach is planning to bring in Fr. Menninger. No date has been scheduled.



Chris Grostic reported that the International Office is having their retreat, September 21, 2017 in Denver, Colorado. Many of their staff are retiring and they need to select new staff and reset their future goals. Any member can attend. For further information go on their website.


Marilyn Mack will be taking an annual vacation visiting her children in Texas and California for the holidays. Meetings that occur while she is gone will have to have notes taken by someone else.

NEXT MEETING:   December 10, 2016 at St. Matthews.

Respectfully submitted,


Marilyn Louise Mack, Secretary.



Kay Powers:

One correction is that the International program Sept 21 to 24 that you mentioned is a conference not a retreat.  We had annual conferences up until two years ago.   The new individuals are already on board and running CO.  What we will be doing is learning more of the direction CO is going and a time for input of what we would like CO to include in their new look.


You might want to go to the Contemplative Outreach website, get your name on their email list  and learn more about CO in general.  I would be happy to discuss CO’s history. with you.  Let me know if you would like to set up a phone meeting.


Peace be with you,



From Nancy Moran

An addendum to the minutes – this is not a correction because we didn’t discuss it in the meeting but I want to take this opportunity to make a comment regarding workshop stress in the minutes.  As we already know all the opportunities the Holy Spirit gives us to share centering prayer are meaningful and enriching for both for the transmitter and the receiver.  This is very true of the Introduction to Centering Prayer Workshops.  We also know the gifts of the Holy Spirit are peace and rest – I/we experience stress only when we make it so.  In reality, presenting at workshops is a grace that strengthens our love for and commitment to centering prayer. I wanted to write this because I want to encourage people who have the impetus to do the presenter formation to know what a good and grace filled experience it is.

I also want to clarify that if the presenters want to facilitate the follow up sessions this may certainly be an option.

Sample page of events



Centering Prayer Introductory Program
St. Basil the Great Catholic Church
8700 Brecksville Rd, Brecksville, OH 44141

Follow Up Sessions:

Saturday August 13  
9:00 am to 11:00 am
Saturday August 20    
9:00 am to 11:00 am
Saturday. August 27   
9:00 am to 11:00 am

August 6, 2016

Silent Day of Prayer 

Saturday, August 6, 2016

9:00 am – 12:00 pm

St. Rita Catholic Church

32820 Baldwin Rd, Solon Ohio 44139

with parking next to the church and entering on the side to St. Mark Chapel

St. Rita’ s Centering Prayer group is glad to announce a day for getting together in silent prayer. On Saturday August 6 from 9am to 12 pm, we will  dedicate to practice 2 double sits of Centering Prayer, have a time for a Lectio Divina and listen a short reading from Fr. Thomas Keating.

If you are in need for a quiet space and pray with a  contemplative community, you are cordially invited to share this moment with us.

Please, RSVP to Jackie Fabian, who is the leader of this group. Her e-mail address:


September 16 – 22, 2016

Centering Prayer Intensive Retreat and Post Intensive Retreat  

CONEO_CP Intensive and Post Intensive registration flyer

September 16 – 22, 2016

Villa Maria Education and Spirituality Center

2067 Evergreen St., Villa Maria, PA 16155

Join fellow practitioners for immersion in the practice of Centering Prayer, as taught by Contemplative Outreach. Two retreats are available during the week, based on your background:

Centering Prayer Intensive Retreat: The Intensive Retreat features an educational component, plus up to three hours of Centering Prayer and two videos from the “Spiritual Journey” video series each day. Throughout the retreat experience, one becomes more immersed in the conceptual background of the spiritual practice, as well as refinement in the practice itself.

Recommended preparation: established daily practice of Centering Prayer for at least six months to one year.

Centering Prayer Post Intensive Retreat: The Post Intensive Retreat provides an opportunity for even more intensive Centering Prayer, solitude, and silence in community. The Post Intensive is predominantly silent, with no videos shown.

Recommended preparation: previous attendance at an Intensive Retreat or equivalent.

Both retreats will be held simultaneously at Villa Maria Education and Spirituality Center (, located in Western Pennsylvania on the picturesque grounds of Villa Maria Community Center, home of the Sisters of the Humility of Mary.

Questions? Contact Kay Powers (216.932.8911 or or visit

REGISTRATION (Limited Space Available)

 Name: ______________________

Address: ______________________


Phone: ______________________

Email: ______________________

Dietary restrictions: __________________

Select Retreat: [ ] Intensive Retreat

[ ] Post Intensive Retreat

Room & Board – before 8/15/2016:

[ ] Single Room ($600)

[ ] Double Room ($450)

After 8/15/2016:

[ ] Single Room ($625)

[ ] Double Room ($475)

Mail with check (payable to “CONEO”) to: CONEO Retreat

c/o Ivi Latronica

210 Kenneth Dr.

Brunswick, OH 44212

CONEO_CP Intensive and Post Intensive registration flyer

November 6, 2016

Recognition and Appreciation Date for Facilitators and Volunteers

Date: Sunday, November 6, 2016.     Save the date!

Facilitators and Volunteers 
Recognition and Appreciation Date
November 6, 2:00 – 4:30 pm
We will share a meal, Centering Prayer, time for recognition and sharing and
Greenbridge Teahouse and Café  –  9036 Church St, Twinsburg, OH 44087
Please RSVP to
John Garrit by November 2

We will honor those who has supported CONEO from the initial days of the Chapter. Plan now to share this celebration.

CONEO Retreat Villa Maria Photos by Gina_ GDP Photography

Hi Everyone!

Here is the link to the photos I took on our retreat. I grew up in the deep woods and this retreat ended up being a profound healing/unloading of some of my childish decisions about life that I carried forward. Being able to be in the woods, the pool and with all of your loving presences were such a blessing to me last week. I have been so uplifted and continue to bask in the experience. I am so very grateful.

I took small hikes every day. Seeing through the lens of my camera, took me into the mystical in so many ways. I invite you to re-experience some of the wonders of Villa Maria with me, through this photo journey.

Finally, you will see that I put some text onto some pictures. At the very end, are a few that I made for specific friends but included in a sense of playfullness. Please, take no offence and view them in the spirit they were created. 🙂

A few things about this website:

  • Keep this email if you want to revisit the photos as it is your only link. This is a private gallery and cannot be accessed from the home page of my website.
  • You are welcome to download any images for your personal use. I exhibit at a local gift shop and may print some images for that purpose, so, (not that you would . . .), please no commercial use. Except, for the Sisters of the Humility of Mary. If any images are of use to you, please do use them, as my gift. Contact me for a statement giving you full rights if you can use some.
  • To view – click on one of the links (in red) embedded in this message. double click on a thumbnail image . . . click one more time on the image that becomes enlarged and you will have a full screen view. Use either the dots on the right side of the image or the arrow keys on your keyboard to move through the photos.

CONEO Reatreat Villa Maria, PA September 2016,

Peace, Love, Justice and all Good Things to you,


GDG Photography

PS Don’t hesitate to contact me with any questions!

CONEO Reatreat Villa Maria, PA September 2016

To save photos to your phone, download the free Photo Moments app for iOS or Android then click here to view the gallery.

View CONEO Reatreat Villa Maria, PA September 2016 on the Photo Moments app: