Christ Church Georgetown Garden


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Quiet Mornings at Christ Church

An Eastertide Quiet MorningWalking in Newness of Life: On Saturday, May 6, 9:30 a.m. - 12:30 p.m., there will be a Quiet Morning in the Chapel led by Merrill Carrington. The events of Holy Week and Easter, and our liturgical recollection of those events, go by with little time to absorb, much less understand, the nuanced depths of these holy mysteries. Yet, the Risen One calls us to weave Resurrection Life into the patttern of our days of haste and distraction. With its ancient roots, Eastertide is a season that the earliest Christians observed as "the Great Fifty Days." For 21st century Christians, the days leading to Pentecost are an opportunity to "read, mark, learn and inwardly digest" the Paschal Mystery as we listen week by week to the disciples' encounters with the Risen Christ. With the aid of a few of the great works of art that have attempted to interpret the reality of Christ's Passion and Ressurrection, the Quiet Morning will help identify the newness of life already present to us, renew the ground of our beseeching, and deepen our intention to "practice resurrection."  Merrill Carrington has an MDiv from Union Theological Seminary and spent three years on the staff of the College of Preachers at Washington National Cathedral. She is a peer guide in the Continuing Education in Preaching program at Virginia Theological Seminary. As a spiritual director, her ministry has focused on companioning individuals in the life of the Spirit, and leading retreats and quiet days. She has been a Christ Church parishioner since 1993 and is a member of the Vestry.


In 2016-2017, Christ Church plans to offer four Saturday Quiet Mornings for spiritual refreshment – three linked to the liturgical calendar, and three focused on leading voices from the rich history of contemplative Christianity. As has been true of past Quiet Mornings, the intention is not only to provide insight into contemplative tradition and some of its leading lights, but also to provide an experience of drawing closer to God and to our own deepest selves, through a time of quiet spaciousness. On the schedule already is a Lenten Quiet Morning to be led by the Rev. Martin Smith on Saturday, March 11, 2017.

Contemplative prayer strikes some as a bewildering concept, and in many ways it is distinct from both the corporate prayer of our liturgies and from our individual prayers of petition, intercession or gratitude. It is most often silent and tends to involve resting in God's presence and opening ourselves to the "still, small voice." This generally requires that we set aside our own agenda, perhaps sitting with a phrase, image, or narrative that emerges from a scripture passage or other reading. While there are various approaches, the contemplative framework is surprisingly simple and deeply rooted in Christian tradition, which means that we are all capable of some degree of contemplative prayer and contemplative living. It also means that there are many guides to help move us in that direction. For more information and question, please contact the Rev. Elizabeth Keeler or parishioner Merrill Carrington.