Spiritual Formation

Colonial Church embraces a call to a vision of spiritual formation in all our ministries.

So what is Spiritual Formation? Simply, it’s the process of a community being formed in the image and likeness of Christ for the sake of others. Growing in Christ involves both the inner life of faith and the outward experience of living one’s faith out in daily life. The Center for Spiritual Formation at Colonial helps integrate spiritual formation into the life of our church by offering opportunities for spiritual growth, prayer, study and reflection.

The Center includes space for Spiritual Direction, prayer, and silent retreat and is located on the south end of the church over looking the covered bridge and pond (above Upper Room’s Staff Offices).

We’re hiring a Spiritual Formation Associate to tend to our communal formation. Our opportunities will be limited as we discern the right fit for this dedicated position, but keep in touch here for opportunities that might bubble up between now and then!

Centering Prayer with Lectio Divina:

Listening to God Through        Prayer, Scripture, & Silence

The Prayer of Consent

“Be still and know that I am God.” Psalm 46:10

Centering Prayer is a receptive method of silent prayer that prepares us to receive the gift of contemplative prayer, prayer in which we experience God’s presence within us, closer than breathing, closer than thinking, closer than consciousness itself.  This method of prayer is both a relationship with God and a discipline to foster that relationship. Centering Prayer is not meant to replace other kinds of prayer.  Rather, it adds depth of meaning to all prayer and facilitates the movement from more active modes of prayer-verbal, mental or affective prayer-into a receptive prayer of resting in God.  Centering Prayer emphasizes prayer as a personal relationship with God and as a movement beyond conversation with Christ to communion with Christ.  By Thomas Keating, Contemplative Outreach

Evenings will consist of one to two periods of Centering Prayer, a prayer form of listening to God in silence, and lectio divina. This is a prayer form of reading and listening to scripture in a meditative manner. Instructions will be given so there is no need to be experienced. Everyone is invited to join this experience of prayer.

Evenings are led by Carol Cushman, who is a trained facilitator of Centering Prayer. They are currently meeting virtually via Zoom. Looking to get plugged in? Email Carol Cushman or Rev. Sara Wilhelm Garbers.

Spiritual Direction

In the wondrous and sometimes frantic rush of your life, do you find yourself longing for a small space of quiet, for a small slice of time in which to catch your breath, to put your life into perspective, and most importantly, to sense where God might be in the midst of it all?

Perhaps spiritual direction is for you. Spiritual direction has a strong foundation in Christian tradition and is centuries old. It is a ministry of listening, where a trained director listens with care and reverence to your story, your experiences, your thinking, your acting, and your prayer in order to help you live with greater clarity and intention as you relate to God, yourself, and others.

Most people seeking direction meet with a director once a month for a few months to a few years. It is customary to pay a suggested fee, though no one will be turned away who cannot pay. If you are drawn to seeking spiritual direction, please contact Rev. Sara Wilhelm Garbers and we will connect you with a director with whom you can schedule a complementary introductory meeting.

Spiritual Retreats

(Personal and Corporate)

Colonial offers space for both personal retreats and hosts occasional spiritual formation retreats. Unfortunately, we are not booking retreats right now in line with our current COVID-19 policy. Keep in touch here or in our E-News for updates as our policies change.


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