Welcome to the Heart of Texas chapter of Contemplative Outreach (HoTCO). We are an ecumenical group of women and men serving together to support those who want to deepen their relationship with God through the practice of Centering Prayer.
Centering Prayer is an ancient method of Christian prayer which prepares us to receive the gift of God’s presence, traditionally called contemplative prayer.
HoTCO is one of more than 90 active chapters in 39 countries formed by Contemplative Outreach, Ltd., a worldwide spiritual network that provides support and resources for Centering Prayer practitioners.
We offer Introduction to Centering Prayer workshops and retreats ranging from one to ten days in length.
We support Centering Prayer groups that meet daily, weekly and monthly in various churches, homes and institutions, as well as contemplative church services throughout the area.
- COVID-19 Updates:
- Retreats are being offered Online only, In-Person only, and Hybrid (both) – check the details for additional updates.
- Many local Centering Prayer groups are now meeting virtually using Zoom conferencing. For the latest updates, please see Prayer Groups.
- The Meditation Chapel currently offers many online opportunities each week to join others in Centering Prayer and Lectio Divina. These are a wonderful way to pray with others in community, while remaining at home. When looking at their calendar, note that the Centering Prayer groups meet in the ‘Thomas Keating Chapel.’
- You are invited:
- 7-Day In-person Advent Centering Prayer Retreat – Fri, Dec 2nd 6:00 pm thru Thu, Dec 8th 11:30 am CST – offered by the Church of Conscious Harmony at Cedarbrake Renewal Center in Belton, TX. The retreat will be a prayerful, quiet, spacious time in community to live and move and have our being amidst the great mysteries of this sacred time of year, to listen to the beautiful music of the season, and gaze upon the glory of Advent art. There will be periods of Centering Prayer, twice-daily opportunities for prayerful movement/yoga, and each evening a Lux Divina service with Lectio Divina and the Eucharist. There will be times for spiritual companioning, if desired, and expansive spaces for time on one’s own. Retreatants will be sent a playlist of sacred music for the season to listen to throughout the retreat and beyond and to enter into the practice of Musica Divina. The retreat cost is $800 and includes vegetarian meals and a private room. Retreat will be held in the Conference Center. For more info and to register, select this link.
- 1-Day Online and In-person Advent Centering Prayer Retreat – Dec 10th, 9:00 am to 3:00 pm CDT – offered by the Church of Conscious Harmony. Join in the silence of Centering Prayer and Lectio Divina. For more info and to register, select this link.
- 3-Day In-person Advent Centering Prayer Retreat (“In Stillness & Silence, I Begin Again”) – Fri, Dec 16th 6:00 pm thru Sun, Dec 18th 11:30 am CST – offered by the Church of Conscious Harmony at Cedarbrake Renewal Center in Belton, TX. As we approach the Winter Solstice and the celebration of Christmas and New Year’s, take time in the silence of Centering Prayer at Cedarbrake, to consciously reflect on the year that has past and envision the new year to come. This teaching retreat will be an ideal opportunity for those wishing to experience a Centering Prayer retreat for the first time. The retreat cost is $300 and includes vegetarian meals and private room. Retreat will be held in the Conference Center. For more info and to register, select this link.
- 5-Day In-person “Renewal” Centering Prayer Retreat – Fri, Jan 13th 5:00 pm thru Tue, Jan 17th 11:30 am CST – offered by the Church of Conscious Harmony at Cedarbrake Renewal Center in Belton, TX. The retreat will be prayerful, quiet and spacious. We will have an opportunity to all join for Centering Prayer, Lectio Divina, prayerful movement and celebration of the Eucharist. There will be times for spiritual companioning, if desired, and expansive spaces for time on one’s own — to walk in nature, to read, journal, watch video or simply to rest. The retreat cost is $650 and includes vegetarian meals and a private room. Retreat will be held in the Conference Center. For more info and to register, select this link.
- For retreats in the year of 2022, please see retreats and introductory workshops. Retreats and workshops for 2022 will be updated as changes become available.
- The 12-Step Outreach service team will by led by Emily Haeussler. If you are interested, please contact Emily.
- Pamela Begeman is offering Welcoming Prayer workshops to the HoTCO community. The workshops can be 1-day or a series of evening meetings to accommodate your church or community. If you are interested, please contact Pamela.
- The 2022 Calendar of introductory workshops and retreats is tentatively set. Explore the events in 2022 and sign up for one!
- Pray in Community: Our list of local Prayer Groups will be continually updated in 2022. There are also several contemplative church services around town that we’re aware of. Information on these can be found on the Other Events page and will be updated as we receive new information.
- Consider supporting our Centering Prayer community by joining one of our Service Teams. We would love to hear from you regarding your interest in serving our chapter by mailing Lynne Roy or Kristi Michener. Your involvement in our Centering Prayer community is vital!
…when you pray, go into your room and shut the door and pray to your Father who is in secret; and your Father who sees in secret will reward you.
~ Matthew 6:6
Contemplative Prayer is the opening of mind and heart – our whole being – to God, the Ultimate Mystery, beyond thoughts, words and emotions, whom we know by faith is within us, closer than breathing, thinking, feeling and choosing; even closer than consciousness itself.
~ Fr. Thomas Keating, Open Mind, Open Heart