A Message from
Fr. Basil Pennington
Former Chairman of the Mastery Foundation

Ministry today makes unprecedented demands upon us. Our own needs and the needs of those we serve are greater than ever. Technology brings the whole world to our doorstep and to the doorstep of our hearts. And we are expected to be there, with the door wide open for one and all. How can we keep our doors wide open? How can women and men called to minister to others keep being there with all the love and care that is needed and so rightly demanded of us?

We cannot wait till the annual retreat or vacation to get recharged. We do not want to wait until we burn out, yet we do quickly burn out when we seek to depend on the very limited resources of our own created energies. We need each day, indeed each moment, to be in touch with the Source that can empower and enliven our ministries and ourselves.

In Centering Prayer, a simple method passed on to us through an ancient, ever-living tradition, we learn to "let go and let God." We learn how to come into immediate contact with the Source of all energy, life, and love. Through the regular practice of Centering Prayer we come to be centered ourselves, to be an oasis of peace, to be a place where God's love shows up in this world of ours. We are transformed by frequent deep contact with transforming love. And our ministry is transformed. We not only find moments of deep rest and repose; we are refreshed and renewed, enabled to give untiringly and lovingly to those whom we have the privilege of serving.

In our preparation and continuing education for ministry, even for those who have given years to intense study, time for study and practice of prayer is frequently missing. The Mastery Foundation Making a Difference workshop both teaches and sets aside time each day for the practice of Centering Prayer.

Because the prayer is a prayer of silence and listening to the One who dwells at the depths of our being, it can be shared and practiced by people of any tradition. By the end of the workshop, participants are familiar enough with Centering Prayer to continue and grow in its practice and to teach it to others.

Fr. Basil Pennington died on June 3, 2005 of injuries suffered in a car accident. Additional information about his life and ministry can be found here.