The Universal Christ: Another Name for Every Thing

Saturday, June 15, 2019
Contemplative Retreat

Click here for a PDF version of the information on this page.

What if Christ is a name for the transcendent within of every “thing” in the universe?
What if Christ is a name for the immense spaciousness of all true Love?
What if Christ refers to an infinite horizon that pulls us both from within and pulls us forward, too?
What if Christ is another name for every thing—in its fullness?

–Richard Rohr

Christ is more than Jesus’ last name. Jesus is a person whose example we can follow. Christ is a cosmic life principle in which all beings participate. The incarnation is an ongoing revelation of Christ, uniting matter and spirit, operating as one and everywhere. Together—Jesus and Christ—show us “the way, the truth, and the life” of death and resurrection.

On June 15, join Contemplative Outreach Northeast Ohio for Centering Prayer, contemplative teachings and practices, and reflection with 3 videos featuring Richard Rohr during the March 28 – 31, 2019 Conference in Albuquerque, New Mexico.

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

Date and Time
Saturday, June 15, 2019
9:00 am to 4:00 pm
(Registration – 8:30 am to 9:00 am. Please arrive early so we can start promptly at 9:00)

Location and Directions
Laurel Lake Retirement Community
200 Laurel Lake Dr.
Hudson, OH 44326

Contact Information
To RSVP for this event, please contact Nancy Moran at email, no later than June 12. For further information: contact Josefina Fernandez at email

Retreat leaders
Nancy Moran and Josefina Fernandez


8:30 am – 9:00 am                Registration

9:00 am – 9:20 am                Opening and Introduction

9:20 am – 11:00 am              Centering Prayer – Intro to the Universal Christ (video)

11:00 am – 11:15 am            Break

11:15 am – 11:45 am            Contemplative Sharing

11:45 am – 12:30 pm            Lunch

12:30 pm – 1:40 pm              Centering Prayer – The Universal Christ (video)

1:45 pm – 2:15 pm                Contemplative Sharing

2:15 pm – 2:30 pm                Break

2:30 pm – 3:15 pm                Contemplation, The Tomb and Not Knowing (video)

3:15 pm – 3:45 pm                Contemplative Sharing

3:45 pm – 4:00 pm                Closing

2019 Spring Silent Retreat

Attend a silent weekend retreat at the Villa Maria Education and Spirituality Center, just one and a half hours east of Cleveland. The retreat features sessions of silent Centering Prayer and viewings from the God is Love DVD, featuring Father Thomas Keating. Silence is maintained throughout the day and during mealtimes. Father Carl Amico, a founding member of Contemplative Outreach, will lead discussion and answer questions after the DVD viewings.

An optional five-day Grand Silence Retreat begins Monday, April 29 through Friday, May 3 and features additional segments from the God is Love DVD. Silence is maintained throughout the day and during mealtimes. Retreatants can attend the five-day retreat, the three-day retreat or combine them for a week-long retreat.

  • Location: Villa Maria, Pulaski, PA
  • Dates of Weekend Retreat: Friday, May 3 through Sunday, May 5
  • Dates of Grand Silent Retreat: Monday, April 29 through Friday, May 3

To make reservations, contact Mary Broglie by April 3 at email or phone 412-327-2318.

Click here for more information about the retreat.

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.

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:


Transition Kickoff for CONEO Leadership Team

Transition Kickoff for CONEO Leadership Team

July 26, 2016     


 CONEO Leadership In Transition Process

Saturday Day of Prayer
at  St. Rita Catholic Church in Solon

 Saturday August 6 from 9am to 12 pm. We will have 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 for  praying with a  contemplative community, please RSVP to Jackie Fabian, who is the leader of this group. Her e-mail address:



Last Saturday July 23, a group of 25 people from our community of Centering Prayer practitioners met to acknowledge the long term grounding roots and the evolution of our Chapter and the beginning of the transition process of our leadership team. My three year commitment as Coordinator is rapidly approaching, and my hope is to provide a smooth transition  for continuation of the vision of Contemplative Outreach: "to foster the process of transformation in Christ in one another through the practice of Centering Prayer".

I have the pleasure of announcing that Chris Grostic will be our next Coordinator begining on November 15 and I will be helping Chris build  strong service teams that will continue our service to the community of Northeast Ohio.

In addition to the discerning process of CONEO's leader, we were able to start building our future service teams. These will be small groups of people working together as a team to serve an assessed need.

In few days, I will contact all the Centering Prayers Facilitators of our community so each member of their group is well informed and be able to ponder in their heart a possible call for service in some way with the necessities of the functioning of our Chapter.

One additional note: I would like to remind you of the wonderful opportunity of praying in community and to experience a loving presence during our Saturday Day of Prayer at  St. Rita Catholic Church in Solon. The address is : 32820 Baldwing Rd, Solon OH 44139. The date is  August 6, from 9am to 12 pm. Parking is next to the church and please enter on the side to St. Mark Chapel.RSVP to Jackie Fabian

My blessings to all you, and thank you for all your support.

Josefina Fernandez
CONEO Coordinator

Contemplative Outreach Northeast Ohio – CONEO –


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