Welcoming Prayer

Description

The Welcoming Prayer is a method of consenting to God’s presence and action in our physical and emotional reactions to events and situations in daily life. The purpose of the Welcoming Prayer is to deepen our relationship with God through consenting in the ordinary activities of our day. The Welcoming Prayer helps to dismantle the emotional programs of the false-self system and to heal the wounds of a lifetime by addressing them where they are stored — in the body. It contributes to the process of transformation in Christ initiated in Centering Prayer.

Purpose

The purpose of the Welcoming Prayer is to deepen our relationship with God through consenting in ordinary activities. The Welcoming Prayer helps to dismantle the emotional programs of the false-self system and to heal the wounds of a lifetime by addressing them where they are stored — in the body. It contributes to the process of transformation in Christ initiated in Centering Prayer.

Freedom from the False Self

The practice of Welcoming Prayer is an opportunity to make choices free of the false-self system — responding instead of reacting to the present moment. Through the action of the Holy Spirit, our practice empowers us to take appropriate action as freely and lovingly as possible in any situation.

History

Mary Mrozowski, one of the founders of Contemplative Outreach, formulated the Welcoming Prayer. She based it on the 17th century French spiritual classic Abandonment to Divine Providence by Jean-Pierre de Caussade as well as Fr. Keating’s teachings and her own lived experience of transformation with its underlying attitude of surrender. The practice was so powerful in bringing about inner change that it soon spread throughout the Contemplative Outreach network.

Instructions

  1. Feel and sink in to what you are experiencing this moment in your body.
  2. Welcome what you are experiencing this moment in your body as an opportunity to consent to the Divine Indwelling.
  3. Let go by saying “I let go of my desire for security, affection, control and embrace this moment as it is.”

Cynthia Bourgeault and the Welcoming Practice

Additional Resources

The Practice of Welcoming Prayer (Cherry Haisten)


SOURCE:

The text on this page was excerpted from The Welcoming Prayer by Contemplative Outreach. Contemplative Outreach is an excellent resource for anyone seeking information and guidance about the Christian contemplative tradition and associated practices.