Summer Institute, two weeks of reflective prayer, scholarly study and retreat opportunities sponsored by the Center for Ministry and Spirituality, will run through July 20, 2012 at the College of Saint Elizabeth. Limited seats are still open for the second week of morning and/or evening classes as well as retreats on July 14 and July 18. For further information please call the Center at 973-290-4302 or visit www.cse.edu/summerinstitute.
Events for the second week of the Institute include:
Retreat, Saturday, July 14, 9 a.m. to 2 p.m., Forgiveness and Unfinished Business…Healing and Growth for the Journey of Life. Presenter: Brother Loughlan Sofield.
Retreat, Wednesday, July 18, Awakening the Brain: The Neuropsychology of Grace, either from 9:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. or 6:30 to 9:30 p.m. Presenter: Dr. Charlotte Tomaino.
Courses for July 16-20, 9:30 a.m. to 12:30 or 6:30 to 9:30 p.m., Living an Authentic Spiritual Life: Lessons from the End of Life. Presenter: Rev. Dr. Kathleen Rusnak.
To register please call the Center at 973-290-4302 or visit www.cse.edu/summerinstitute.
Events during the first week, July 9-14 are drawing dozens of faithful to campus – whether for classroom study or retreats. The week began July 9 with morning classes conducted by two distinguished speakers Thomas Zanzig, and Rev. Richard Fragomeni. Zanzig, author and consultant in adult faith formation, is leading sessions “Spiritual Transformation: The Heart of Adult Faith Formation.” Fragomeni’s course is “Spirituality through the Ages: Ancient Mystics and Modern Sages.”
Attendees have the option to attend the morning session, from 9:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m., or evening session from 6:30 to 9:30 p.m. Courses may be taken for credit or non-credit.
“We are all desiring something besides ourselves…moving toward the One,” Fragomeni said in discussing the book God of Love by Mirabai Starr which examines the commonalities of Islam, Judaism and Christianity. “First there is a recognition of a higher power, then a movement toward becoming like that power, and finally, a mystical step where the follower and higher power are united—there is no longer an Other.”
In this journey, he stressed the importance of a centering prayer, contemplative prayer or transcendental meditation. All are similar in their practice and helpful in the spiritual journey toward becoming one. “A centering prayer is a place of stillness…like the presence of God…like dipping into the eternal.” He added that God is all and in all …while sin is just missing the mark.
Fragomeni is chair of the department of word and worship at Catholic Theological Union in Chicago.