Contemplation is a change in consciousness.  It brings us to see the big picture. . .. to see beyond our own boundaries, beyond our own denominations, beyond even our own doctrines and dogmas and institutional self-interest, straight into the face of a mothering God from whose womb has come all the life that is. (Joan Chittister)


Christian Contemplative Ministries at St. Barnabas is about diving deep into the Heart of Divine Reality.  Everyone has the capacity to engage in contemplation and grow deeper in their relationship with the Cosmic Christ.  “You are made both of and for contemplation.  It is the secret longing of your being. . . . It is in the wilderness of your heart that you discover a reality beyond every religious form.  (Beverly Lanzetta)

We invite you to learn how to live into the non-dual Reality of Divine Love. This ability is developed through conscious, intentional practice that we engage in together and follow individually when we are apart. Our practices engage heart, mind and body – the three centers of knowing for human beings.


Opportunities to practice and develop in Contemplative Wisdom include:



CENTERING PRAYER: Practice of the Heart and Body

Centering Prayer continues to gather – each participant in their own home – at 9 am on Tuesdays.  There is a regular form that is updated each week through email with a chant and reading.  If you are a Centering Prayer practitioner and would like to receive the emails, please contact Patricia Robertson at    If you would like to learn more about Centering Prayer you can also contact her for instruction.  This time at home is a good time to learn and establish your practice.

BOOK STUDY:  Practice of the Mind

For ongoing learning, we meet on monthly occasions after group practice of centering prayer  throughout the year to read and discuss a book that leads us further in our practice of the Contemplative Wisdom Way of Being.


Spring/Summer Book Study
The Wisdom Way of Knowing by Cynthia Bourgeault


How do you know anything?  Really know it, in your bones?  In this day and age of “Fake news”, false truths, and the politicized meaning of life, we have the opportunity to forge a different path.  As Thomas Moore puts it in his Foreward to this book:


“The society currently believes in the religion of science and morality of self-interest.  But this modernism. . is not adequate to give us the vision to raise our children, stay happily married, and maintain peace in our communities or around the world.  We need ways to be educated spiritually that are not naïve, sentimental, or narcissistic. 

There can be no question that the future lying right before us demands a different attitude toward religion. Here is where I think this book on the Wisdom tradition has great value.  It gets down to the particulars of ancient teachings, the tough and challenging parts, that aim at spiritual intelligence and a carefully examined way of life.”


Meeting:  Through ZOOM (until the church building is open)

Tuesdays, twice a month

10:00 am – 11 am


Dates and chapters covered:

June 9                          Intro, Chapters 1-2

June 23                        Chapter 3

July 7                           Chapters 4-5

July 21                         Chapters 6-7

August 4                     Chapter 8

August 18                   Summing up what we’ve learned

Although participation will be open to anyone who receives the weekly enews from St. Barnabas and chooses the link to ZOOM IN, those who register for this study will receive a weekly reminder, book notes and questions to ponder.

Please register with The Rev. Patricia Rome Robertson at


WISDOM RETREAT DAYS: Practice of Heart, Body and Mind together

Based on the teachings of Cynthia Bourgeault, as provided in her book, The Wisdom Way of Knowing, we gather on a Saturday for special teaching, practice of Centering Prayer, chanting, and mindful work together. These gatherings have proven to be invaluable in the ongoing work of Contemplative Practice.


Next Wisdom Day is TBD


From The Rev. Patricia Rome Robertson — BIO

I am so grateful to the Rector of St. Barnabas Church for inviting me to focus on the spiritual work that has meant so much to me for many years. I’ve been a regular practitioner of Contemplative Wisdom since 1998 when Thomas Keating came to the parish where I was serving for a weekend of teaching and practice of Centering Prayer. That practice, along with engagement of Wisdom School teachings with Cynthia Bourgeault, started me on the road of learning about the transformation that spiritual practice brings about in individuals and communities and yes, I believe, the world. This is important work, developing and awakening of the spiritual heart and body awareness that is embedded in all human beings but often lies dormant. Please feel free to email me at with questions about this ministry. Join us for a deepening of your life in Christ!

Patricia provides a periodic blog entitled “Along the Way”.  You can access and subscribe here.