Archive for 2011

Celebrating Incarnation

Lectionary readings for December 25, 2011: Isaiah 52:7-10; Psalm 98; Hebrews 1: 1-4,(5-12); John 1:1-14 “The Word became flesh and lived among us, and we have seen his glory, the glory as of a father’s only son, full of grace and truth.” John 1:14 Good is the Flesh by Brian Wren Good is the flesh…

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Christmas Eve: The Nativity of Our Lord

Lectionary readings for December 24, 2011: Isaiah 9:2-7; Psalm 96; Titus 2:11-14; Luke 2:1-14 (15-20) “For the grace of God has appeared, bringing salvation to all…” Titus 2:11 Christmas Eve signals the beginning of the feast of the Nativity—the celebration of God with us.  Advent, the season of waiting, is coming to a close as…

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Advent 4: Mary and the Prayer of Indifference

Lectionary readings for December 18, 2011: 2 Samuel 7: 1-11,16; Luke 1:46b-55; Romans 16:25-27; Luke 1:26-38 Then Mary said, “Here am I, the servant of the Lord; let it be with me according to your word.” Luke 1:38 Most of us don’t think of indifference as being very positive. In fact, we tend to identify…

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The Fruit of Active Waiting

Dear Friend of the Transforming Center, Greetings to you this Advent season! During Advent we practice the spiritual discipline of waiting—waiting for the coming of Christ not only in the ancient world of the Biblical story, but in our own lives now. We become aware of those places where we long to experience Christ’s presence…

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Advent 3: Keepin’ it Real

Lectionary readings for December 11, 2011:  Isaiah 61:1-4, 8-11; Psalm 126; 1 Thessalonians 5:16-24; John 1:6-8, 19-28 There was a man sent from God, whose name was John…he himself was not the light, but he came to testify to the light.  The true light, which enlightens everyone, was coming into the world. John 1:6-9 In…

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Advent 2: Preparing the Way: Making Confession

Lectionary readings for December 4, 2011:  Isaiah 40:1-11; Psalm 85:1-2, 8-13; 2 Peter 3:8-15a; Mark 1:1-8 “See, I am sending my messenger ahead of you, who will prepare your way; the voice of one crying out in the wilderness: ‘Prepare the way of the Lord, make his paths straight.’” John the baptizer appeared in the wilderness,…

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Advent 1: The Darkness of Waiting

Read these Lectionary readings for November 27, 2011: Isaiah 64:1-9; Psalm 80:1-7, 17-19; 1 Corinthians 1: 3-9; Mark 13:24-37 “But in those days, after that suffering, the sun will be darkened, and the moon will not give its light, and the stars will be falling from heaven, and the powers in the heavens will be…

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Preparing for Advent

During Advent we wait for the coming of Christ not only in the ancient world of the Biblical story, but in our own lives now. As is our tradition, we will offer a special eReflections series entitled Poems and Prayers for Advent to help you watch and wait for Christ’s presence where you need it…

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Part 5: Discerning and Doing the Will of God

Editors note: During the launch of the fall ministry season, we offer you part 5 of our eReflections series encouraging you to establish spiritual rhythms that will strengthen the soul of your leadership. Click on the link to read part 1, part 2, part 3, and part 4 of this series. “Decision making has its…

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Part 4: Self-Knowledge and Self-Examination

Editors note: During the launch of the fall ministry season, we offer you part 4 of our eReflections series encouraging you to establish spiritual rhythms that will strengthen the soul of your leadership. Click on the link to read part 1, part 2, and part 3 of this series. “A leader is a person who must take…

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Part 3: Silence and Word, Stillness and Action

Silence and Word, Stillness and Action

Editors note: As we head into the fall ministry season we offer you part three of an eReflections series to encourage you to pay attention to the spiritual rhythms that will strengthen the soul of your leadership. Click on the link to read part 1, part 2, part 4, and part 5 of this series.  …

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Part 2: Solitude and Community

Solitude in Community

Editors note: As we head into the fall ministry season we offer you part two of an eReflections series to encourage you to pay attention to the spiritual rhythms that will strengthen the soul of your leadership. Click on the links to read part 1, part 3, part 4, and part 5 of this series. “Let…

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Part 1: Rhythms of Work and Rest

Busyness

Editors note: As we head into the fall ministry season we offer you an eReflections series to encourage you to pay attention to the spiritual rhythms that will strengthen the soul of your leadership. Click on the link to read part 2, part 3, part 4, and part 5 of this series. “We are blessed with…

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Your gift doubles when you give before August 28th

Progress Update: Our goal is to raise $10,000 in August (for a total impact of $20,000). As of August 27 we are at $13,209! Total impact $23,209. Praise God for his provision. Pastors need the endurance of an Ironman! Completing an Ironman competition demands a level of endurance that doesn’t happen by accident. It requires…

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Interview with Ruth Haley Barton Regarding Sacred Rhythms

Sacred Rhythms

“Many of us have more clearly developed plans for finances, further education, home improvements and physical fitness than we do for our spiritual lives.” —Ruth Haley Barton An Interview with Ruth Haley Barton What is the significance of the phrase “sacred rhythms”? Ruth Haley Barton: The phrase “spiritual rhythms” is a way of talking about the…

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Transforming Center Announces Academic Partnership with Northern Seminary and Dr. Ruth Haley Barton joins Northern as Professor of Spiritual Transformation

Former Northern student and founder of the Transforming Center, Ruth Haley Barton, was awarded with an honorary doctorate for her years of fruitful ministry in the areas of spiritual formation and direction at this year’s commencement ceremony.  In conjunction with the conferral of this degree, Dr. Barton joins Northern Seminary’s faculty as Adjunct Professor of Spiritual…

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Pentecost: Celebrating the “Spirit” in Spiritual Transformation

Lectionary readings: Acts 2:1-21; Psalm 104:24-34; I Corinthians 12:3b-13; John 20:19-23 This week we celebrate Pentecost—the incarnate and risen Christ present to us in a new way through the gift of the Holy Spirit—enlivening, empowering and transforming us to further Christ’s redemptive mission in the world. Pentecost signals the beginning of Ordinary Time—not because it…

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When Resurrection Takes Time

“The way of possibility is the way of going through.” John S. Dunne It’s a good thing Easter is a season and not just a day because some resurrections take time.  Like the coming of spring, some resurrections happen gradually; they are not overnight sensations. And yet somehow, we need to experience these as miracles…

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Sacred Rhythms DVD Curriculum reviews

Below are some early reviews of the new Sacred Rhythms DVD Curriculum. Don’t miss the special offer Zondervan is offering until May 5th. From Byron Borger on the Hearts and Minds bookstore blog Sacred Rhythms: Spiritual Practices that Nourish Your Soul and Transform Your Life DVD  Ruth Haley Barton (Zondervan) $31.99 book and DVD study pack.…

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Good Friday Prayer Vigil Response

On Good Friday over 400 people around the world (including those who will attend our service) will be praying together using this Stations of the Cross Prayer Guide. We have been amazed at the response to the invitation to pray in this particular way. Just a few of the locations from which people will be praying include……

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Holy Week: Practicing the Most Sacred Rhythm of All

“Nothing that has not died will be resurrected.” C.S. Lewis I remember leading a retreat for pastors some years ago in which we talked about that place in the spiritual journey (variously called the Dark Night, the wilderness, the movement from the false self to the true self) in which there is a very profound kind…

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An Invitation to Pray on Good Friday

“Who can stay awake in this night of God? Who will not be as if paralyzed by it? Christ’s struggle was with God. This was his real agony. He overcame it through his self-surrender. That was his victory, and our hope.”  –Jurgen Moltmann It is a custom of the Christian church to keep vigil with…

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Lent 2011: The Wilderness Within

“The spiritual journey is not a career or a success story.  It is a series of humiliations of the false self that become more and more profound.” Fr. Thomas Keating I agree with this statement. I don’t like it… but I know it is true.  And it makes me wonder if any of us are…

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You’re Invited: Stations of the Cross Prayer Service on April 22

Good Friday Stations of the Cross Prayer Service Quiet moments of music, liturgical prayer, thoughtful meditation and silent reflection on Christ’s journey to the cross. Friday, April 22, 2011 12:00 – 1:00 pm Loretto Center Chapel 1600 Somerset Lane Wheaton, IL Led by Ruth Haley Barton, Rory Noland, and the Transforming Center team You are…

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Lent: An Invitation to Return to God

Lectionary readings for Ash Wednesday: Joel 2:1-2, 12-17; Psalm 51:1-17; 2 Corinthians 5:20b-6:10; Matthew 6:1-6, 16-21. “Yet even now, says the Lord, repent and return to me with all your heart” Joel 2:13 Today is Ash Wednesday—the beginning of the Church’s observance of the Lenten season. It is a space in time in which we…

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New Sacred Rhythms DVD Curriculum coming soon

Our first DVD curriculum, Sacred Rhythms: Practices that Nourish Your Soul and Transform Your Life (Zondervan), will be available in late March. Based on the book, Sacred Rhythms (available from interVarsity Press), Ruth Haley Barton offers teaching and spiritual direction that will help you introduce spiritual formation to your congregation by actually guiding them in…

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Hear what people are saying about the Transforming Community®

These video testimonials highlight some of the people who have participated in the Transforming Center’s two-year experience of spiritual formation for leaders in community.   A Transforming Community® is a group of pastors and Christian leaders who commit themselves to nine quarterly retreats over two years of time for the purpose of experiencing deeper levels…

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A Reunion Retreat for Transforming Community® alumni

The Transforming Center is pleased to announce our first reunion retreat on May 1-3, 2011 for those who have been through our two-year Transforming Community® experience. FOR THE SAKE OF OTHERS With guest presenter Dr. M. Robert Mulholland, Jr. Spiritual transformation is the process by which Christ is formed in us for the glory of…

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Join Ruth Haley Barton for Leaders in Conversation Webinar

Join Ruth Haley Barton on March 22nd at 2:00 EST for a Conversation on Strengthening the Soul of Your Leadership. Ruth will guide you through the “How Is It With Your Soul?” assessment for leaders and then explore solitude and silence as crucial disciplines for strengthening the soul of your leadership. Sponsored by David  C.…

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Martin Luther King, Jr.’s Strength of Soul

“Every genuine expression of love grows out of a consistent and total surrender to God.” Martin Luther King, Jr. One of the things that disturbs me most about the way we talk about spirituality and related themes in evangelical circles today is the way we often create false dichotomies between being and doing, prayer and…

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What We Believe About Spiritual Transformation

autumn tree cover

A Biblical and Theological Perspective Following is a brief summary of the core beliefs that form the foundation of our approach to spiritual transformation (spiritual formation). Christ Formed in Us. Spiritual transformation is the process by which Christ is formed in us …for the glory of God, for the abundance of our own lives, and…

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Epiphany: A New Kind of Journey

Lectionary readings for January 6, 2011: Isaiah 60:1-6; Psalm 72:1-7, 10-14; Ephesians 3:1-23; Matthew 2:1-12 “Christians of the future will either be mystics or they will not be.” Karl Rahner Today is the feast of the Epiphany—the day when the Church commemorates the journey of the wise men to seek the Christ child.  On this…

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