Upcoming Offerings

“Peace meets you at the garden gate…
At Bethany every leaf and tree,
every stone and flower seems infused with the prayers of the faithful.”
— Desmond Tutu

Come walk the labyrinth and discover the peace and beauty of a place apart for prayer and reflection.

Beyond Binary Constructs of Gender and Sexual Identity
Saturday, Dec. 1, 2018, 8:30 am – 1:30 pm
A day of reflection, learning and conversation for spiritual leaders.
“Who do you say that I am?” Jesus asked his disciples. Jesus loved questions. In many faith traditions, questions are often at the heart of opening new ways of understanding and living. In a time when answers are prized, perhaps questions become our more essential teachers. How do we provide spiritual community and companionship with all people? How are we being changed by the insights of LGBTQIA communities? What constructs bind us and what is the wisdom of the Body of Christ that might transform us?   This is a day for listening and reflection with the hope of fostering new community and identities that are life-giving for all of us. The morning will include presentations, the opportunity to gather in small groups and as a whole for shared reflections, insights, and a shared meal together.
Presenters:
The Very Rev. Amy McCreath,
Pastor and mother of a transgender teen;
The Rev. Dr. Cody Sanders
, Pastor to Old Cambridge Baptist Church and Advisor for LGBTQ+ Affairs in the Office of Religious, Spiritual, and Ethical Life at MIT.
Facilitators:
Savannah Hauge, a queer/non-binary facilitator, dancer and biker from rural Wisconsin living in Jamaica Plain.
Bethany Colleagues
Chaplain: The Rev. Dr. Tara Soughers, priest, theologian, writer, and mother of a trans son.
Registration required by November 26, space is limited.  Register online or by email or phone.
Suggested fee:
$50 includes lunch. Sliding scale available as needed.

Retreat on The Wisdom of the Enneagram
Saturday, Jan. 26, 2019, 9:00 am – 2:00 pm
Join us for a retreat on The Wisdom of the Enneagram, led by Bethany Colleague the Rev. Susan Morrison. The day will focus on this popular system for self-awareness and understanding. A spiritual and psychological tool, the Enneagram invites personal transformation and development. You will celebrate your unique strengths, discover ways to overcome barriers that interfere with your being your best self and learn practices that will help you manifest your highest potential. The retreat will be held from 9:30 to 2:00 and will include lunch.
Registration required by January 22. Register online or by email or phoneRetreat fee: $50 includes lunch.

New group beginning this January-June:
Bethany Contemplative Writing Group
This is a new group that will meet monthly to immerse in the art of contemplative writing. This is for writers who already have a practice and desire sustained community, as well as for those seeking to explore writing with a contemplative approach. Each month we will be guided by practices that draw our voices, wisdom and stories from stirrings into fully realized form, as reflections, narratives, and poems.  Writers will share freshly generated workshop material, as well as bring finished pieces for response and care.   Examples and short craft talks will augment what is essentially a time of listening to the still small voice within, and giving it life on the page.
Monthly Meeting Times: Friday mornings 10:30-12:00, on occasion to be followed with a bag lunch time for further conversation. Dates are: Jan. 25, Feb. 22, March 29, April 26, May 17, and June 14.
Led by Bethany Colleague: Kathleen Hirsch, M.F.A., who had a long career in narrative journalism before authoring three books of creative nonfiction, including A Sabbath Life: One Woman’s Search for Wholeness. In addition to being a spiritual director and writer, Kathleen also teaches at Boston College addressing social justice and contemplative work. Her spiritual reflections, www.kathleenhirsch.com offer recent examples of work relevant to those considering this contemplative writing group.  Registration is for all sessions; fee is $180 for all six sessions.  To express interest, please contact us  online or by email or phoneRegistration required by January 8, space is limited.

Fall Contemplative Offerings:
See descriptions below or our Fall 2018 contemplative offering flyer.

Evening Contemplative Practice
2nd and 4th Tuesdays 7:00- 8:30 pm. Upcoming evenings: Nov 27, Dec 11
St. Gabriel’s House, 173 Appleton Street, Arlington
A bi-weekly gathering to explore contemplative practices through meditation, teachings, and discussion facilitated by Bethany Colleagues Christina Leano and Christi Humphrey. We welcome people of all experiences looking for silence in community and support in bringing mindfulness and compassion into their Christian path. The guided meditations and teachings will draw upon the Christian contemplative tradition, monastic spirituality, Buddhist meditation, and self-compassion practices. This Fall 2018 we will be exploring themes from James Finley’s book Christian Meditation: Experiencing the Presence of God.  See here for more details.
In addition, on the 4th Tuesday of each month, someone will be available for questions and conversation on meditation and contemplative practice from 6:30-6:55 pm (Sep 25, Oct 23, Nov 13).
Free-will offering: Donations appreciated to support our ministries.
Registration: Not required but helpful, please register by email. Newcomers welcome every session.

Contemplative Prayer Gathering
Thursday Mornings 10:00-11:30 am.  (Will not meet on Thanksgiving Day).

Chapel of St. Anne
A weekly circle of encouragement for the practice of contemplative prayer.
Led by Bethany House of Prayer Colleagues and Associates.  Newcomers welcome each week.  Enter into the beauty of the Chapel, present to the offerings of the day, the cares of your heart and our world.  Experience the gifts of community, silence and a shared attentiveness to the holy in our lives.

Contemplative Evening Eucharist: Chapel of St. Anne
The 3rd Wednesday evening of the month, September-May.
Next service: November 14.
(Please note: this is the 2nd Wednesday, for this month only, given the Thanksgiving holiday.)
Enter into the quiet beauty of the candle lit Chapel — sing, pray, listen, and honor silence with others who are making their way along paths both familiar and mysterious, ordinary and sacred.

Bethany Poets Workshop Fall 2018
Poem-Making for Witness, Summons, and Surprise
In this four-part poem-making series, we will make poems from new prompts, and share what we make—the poems and the gifts of their witness, summons, and surprise—to celebrate the blessings of our circle as well as the life of creativity within us and beyond us in the wider community. Pre-registration required.  Two poetry circles, beginning in September (see dates below). $120.00 for the fall series.
Groups meet once a month, September through December:
Friday Circle (last year’s morning group) meets 1pm to 3pm: Sept. 7, October 12, Nov. 2, and Dec. 7
Wednesday Circle (last year’s afternoon group) meets 2pm to 4pm: Sept. 19, Oct. 17, Nov. 14, Dec. 19
Note that there is a Waiting List for these circles. Please call or email Bethany House to add your name to the list in case openings become available.

Available Year-Round:
Spiritual Direction
Whether it is a regular practice or arises out of significant life changes or vocational discernment, the value of meeting with a spiritual director can help foster and support your care for your spiritual life and prayer. Bethany House of Prayer has over 10 trained spiritual directors who are lay and ordained, ecumenical leaders. Please contact us by phone or email to explore this resource.

Individual Quiet Days and Retreats for your Parish or Group
Bethany House of Prayer offers an exceptional space for retreats for individuals and groups.  Please contact us if you wish to arrange a day of retreat which can be self – directed,  meeting with a spiritual director or facilitated by Bethany House of Prayer. We can now accommodate groups overnight on retreat.  For group retreats, please register online or call or email to inquire or reserve retreat opportunities. Please contact Bethany House directly if you would like to reserve space for an individual retreat or quiet day.

“Catch the Vision” Celebrating a Century of the Order of Saint Anne
This handsome book of 112 pages and 123 full-color illustrations, offers us glimpses of OSA, past and present, together with reflections written by some of the Order’s many friends. The book can be ordered from the Sisters by email.

Join us as we bring our lives and souls into the transforming reality of God’s spirit in the world.