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Why must one be a commissioned presenter of the Centering Prayer Introductory Workshop before becoming a commissioned presenter of the Lectio Divina Introductory Workshop?
There are important reasons why a commissioned presenter of the Introduction to Lectio Divina Workshop is required to be a commissioned presenter of Centering Prayer. The following are the principal reasons for this requirement:
- Lectio Divina and Centering Prayer are the two core practices of Contemplative Outreach, Ltd. They compliment and support each other, yet they are two distinct practices, each with its own integrity. Therefore, it is important that a presenter of the Lectio Divina Introductory Workshop be experienced in both practices, and in their presentations, so that their distinctive differences can be clearly articulated.
- The presentation of these workshops is more in the nature of a transmission rather than a presentation. One teaches from the depth of one’s experience of the prayer, rather than from certain knowledge one has gained through study.
- The Contemplative Outreach, Ltd. presenter training is a 6-day intensive residential course that instills presentation skills in the presenters, as well as deepens and forms their practice, so that they are better prepared for this transmission. Presenters work in small groups to learn about group dynamics and how best to transmit the prayer in the manner that maintains the integrity of the teachings of Fr. Thomas Keating.
- While the subject matter is different, the actual manner of presentation of Centering Prayer and Lectio Divina is much the same. Therefore, we rely on Centering Prayer training to provide the necessary skills and experience in presenting that can easily be adapted to the presentation of Lectio Divina.
- The experience of presenting the Centering Prayer workshop during the course of commissioning provides valuable experience that will enhance one’s presentation of Lectio Divina.
- If we did not require that a presenter of Lectio Divina first be a commissioned presenter of Centering Prayer we would need to have a separate 6-day training to properly form presenters as outlined above. In addition, many presenters would lack the depth of experience and knowledge that a commissioned presenter of Centering Prayer has developed.