Thomas Merton: The Contemplative Dark Thread

(Originally printed in the Fall 2006 Issue of the MCOI Journal page 8) Twenty-some years ago, my sister Janet and I signed up for a field trip sponsored by the Crystal Cathedral to a Vedanta monastery in the nearby Saddleback Mountains. At that time, we were working together on a discernment newsletter called The New Age Alert and attended as part of our research. The field trip was being promoted as an educational adventure to … Continue reading

Milestones, Memories and Mission

This has been a year of milestones, memories and mission. Joy and I celebrated our 48th wedding anniversary in September. In October we celebrated having met 51 years ago. And some years ago, way back in September of 1952, I was born. 44 years ago, also in September, I was born-again. It seems September is a good month for me. 😊 That is the month I was born, married and born-again. 24 years ago, we … Continue reading

Contemplating Contemplative Prayer: Is It Really Prayer?

(Originally printed in the Winter 2005 Issue of the MCOI Journal beginning on page 10) “God’s first language is silence.”1 “Progress in intimacy with God means progress toward silence.”2 “The important thing is that we are relaxed and our back is straight so that the vitalizing energies can flow freely.”3 Contemplation is “a pure and a virginal knowledge, poor in concepts, poorer still in reasoning, but able, by its very poverty and purity, to follow … Continue reading

Is Your Faith in Vain?

We just finished celebrating the event which is the highlight of the Christian calendar and indeed central to the Christian faith. The resurrection has special implications in several areas. Where the sacrifice on the cross paid for our sin and gave us peace with God, the resurrection conquered death and guaranteed that the redeemed would likewise be resurrected and see God face to face! Without the resurrection of Christ and his people, the Christian faith … Continue reading

Wildly Unbiblical

(Originally printed in the Summer 2003 Issue of the MCOI Journal beginning on page 1) Real Men Don’t Hug Unless… {All “real men” would answer C’ to the posed questions.} 1. Alien beings from a highly advanced society visit the earth. You are the first human they have encountered: and as a token of inter-galactic friendship, they present you with a small but incredibly sophisticated device that is capable of curing all diseases, provide an … Continue reading