Upcoming Events in the Pacific Northwest, US and Canada regions


July 27 – 31, 2015

Banff, Alberta –  Rebirthing of God: A Retreat in Banff with John Philip Newell

For many years, now the Celtic poet, peacemaker and scholar, John Philip Newell, has been teaching the sacredness of being, the of-Godness that is at the heart of our lives and all life.  In our retreat ‘The Rebirthing of God’, he will ask what it would look like if these true depths were to come forth again in radically new ways.  And, he will challenge us to ask what Christianity’s blessing for the world could be if there were to be fresh birth from deep within.  Through presentations, meditation, conversation and sharing, we will explore the major features of this birthing, especially coming back into relationship with the Earth as sacred, reverencing the Wisdom of other religious traditions and living the way of Compassion.  Do we wish to be part of this new holy birth?

John Philip Newell, internationally acclaimed Celtic teacher from Edinburgh, is the celebrated author of Listening for the Heartbeat of God: A Celtic Spirituality.  In 2011, he received the first-ever Contemplative Voices Award from the Shalem Institute in Washington, DC for his work as poet, peacemaker and scholar.  He has authored over 15 books, including Christ of the Celts, Praying with the Earth, A New Harmony and his most recent visionary title The Rebirthing of God: Christianity’s Struggle for New Beginnings.

This event will have time for teaching and spiritual practice in the mornings and evenings and time for hiking in the afternoons.

More information about the type of retreat Dr. Newell leads is available at his website www.heartbeatjourney.org. Registration and more information at www.wisdomcentre.ca.



September 8 – 10, 2015

King’s Fold Retreat Centre, Cochrane Alberta  –  Retreat with Pip Nichols: Perfectly Flawed – Welcome to Incarnation

The Wisdom Centre is so pleased to be able to offer a short three day retreat with contemplative Pip Nichols.  Pip Nichols is a contemplative who lives in Wellington, New Zealand.  Her contemplative seeking led her to Buddhism in the 70’s and she spent a year in a Thai Buddhist Monastery in 1979.  In the 90’s, through her studies with Tessa Bielecki and the Carmenlite Spiritual Life Institute, she returned to her Catholic roots.  Pip became a Spiritual Director in 2006 and has since studied with many spiritual teachers including Thich Nat Hanh, Br David Stendhl-Rast and Cynthia Bourgeault.  Pip is creative in providing her spiritual gifts to both individuals and groups in a country where people are spread out, being willing to use current technology such as Skype and traveling throughout New Zealand as well as Australia.

Cynthia Bourgeault describes Pip saying:

“Pip Nichols is one of the wisest, warmest and most spiritually grounded AMMAs I have ever met.  She has worked extensively with spiritual masters in both the Christian contemplative and Buddhist traditions and has also been deeply formed in the Maori traditions of her native New Zealand.  She combines wisdom, generosity, common sense and compassion in equal measures.  A highly respected spiritual mentor and guide, she is the founder of the New Zealand Contemplative Network. …She is truly a contemplative of and for the entire world, deeply rooted in her own Christian lineage but with her wings spreading to greet the spiritual unity of the entire human family.”

Pip describes her plan for the retreat saying: “Perfectly Flawed! – Welcome to Incarnation.” Wabi sabi is a Japanese aesthetic that allows us to see the sacred in the everyday and the beauty of ordinary imperfection.  We too are wabi sabi.  We too are perfectly flawed, sacred and permeated with everyday beauty. Compassion, unconditional love, loving kindness – whatever we name this extra-ordinary quality – is the sacred aesthetic that allows us to find this ‘treasure fo great price’.  To experience beauty and peace in everyone, everything and everywhere.

During this retreat, we will engage in contemplative practice to deepen our compassion for self, others and all creation.  It will entail slowing down, silence, simplicity, stillness, spaciousness…

More information and registration at www.wisdomcentre.ca



October 8 – 12, 2015

Flathead Lake, Montana –  Retreat: Campfire Talks with Jim Finley – Transforming Trauma: Exploring the Depth Dimensions of Healing

This retreat explores a spiritual contemplative approach to healing focusing specifically on the ways in which spirituality can be a resource in healing suffering, trauma, and the restless longings of our minds and hearts. Emphasis will be given to intimate and practical ways to be more compassionate, present, and skillful in action with others and ourselves. We will be exploring the rewarding and challenging process of forming new paradigms of healing that integrate sound clinical practice and empirical research with the ancient wisdom of the contemplative traditions. The retreat is tailored toward those in the healing professions and meeting the interests of a wider audience. The setting and subject matter are meant to provide the “medium as message”.

Jim Finley, PhD is a modern day mystic and Merton scholar. He lived as a Trappist monk at the Gethsemane Monastery in Kentucky where the Christian monk and author Thomas Merton was his spiritual director. He earned his doctorate in psychology from the School of Psychology at Fuller Theological Seminary in 1989. He has led silent retreats on contemplative living and the contemplative dimensions of healing throughout the United States, Canada, and in several countries in Europe. He is also a current Master Teacher for the Living School at the Center for Action and Contemplation in Albuquerque, New Mexico.

Additional information and registration is available through Two Rivers Consulting. You can access the event information page on their website HERE.

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