Susan Castillo will be teaching "The Way of the Monk" at Tim Keller's Redeemer Presbyterian Church. This is NOT just for women, but open for men and women (she's currently getting her M.A. at Westminister Theological Seminary). As I have demonstrated already in another post, Keller believes women can and should teach men spiritual things as long as its not in the "office" of "elder".
Here's what Redeemer says for the class on their webpage (bold, my emphasis):
The Way of the Monk (April 28, May 5 & 12)
Do you long for the great theology in your head to be more real to your heart? Come discover age-old methods of contemplative prayer and worship that can help you encounter Christ in a more intimate, experiential way. In this hands-on workshop, you will experience the ancient art of chanting the Psalms (they were meant to be sung!), embark on a practice of authentic Christian meditation, discover how a simple, time-honored tool can help unleash the prayer warrior in you, learn what a typical monastic day is like and how you can make your own, private retreat at a monastery, and much more!
Note: This workshop will be of added benefit to fellowship group leaders who wish to cultivate greater variety and depth in their group’s time of worship.
Schedule: Tuesdays, April 28, May 5 & 12 from 7:00PM to 9:00PM.
Location: Redeemer Offices, 11th Floor Conference Room (1359 Broadway, 11th Floor, btw. 36 & 37).
The Way of the Monk (April 28, May 5 & 12)
Apr 28 7:00PM - 9:00PM
In this session, we will focus on Centering Prayer, an age-old practice of authentic Christian meditation. We will cover history, technique, obstacles, and how to overcome them. We will also devote ample time to actual practice and Q &A. We will learn how to properly prepare by grounding ourselves in God’s Word. As a prelude, we will consider the purpose, power, and biblical precedent for silence, solitude, and contemplative practice.
May 5 7:00PM - 9:00PM
Finally…help for fidgety hands and distracted minds! In this session, we will focus on the use of a prayer rope, a practice of prayer that engages the whole person. We’ll begin by viewing a brief video that demonstrates the “Chaplet of the Divine Mercy,” a particular method of using a prayer rope. We will then do our own investigation of Scripture to determine the meaning and power of God’s “mercy” and the resulting implications for rich, yet highly accessible intercessory prayer. We’ll also cover history, purpose, technique, and devote ample time to actual practice and Q &A.
May 12 7:00PM - 9:00PM
The Divine Office/ Liturgy of the Hours
In this session, we will peek at an actual monastic schedule and focus on the mainstay of their daily life, known as the "Divine Office" or "Liturgy of the Hours." At the cornerstone of the Divine Office is the prayerful, sung recitation or "chanting" of the Psalms; we will consider how we can rightly appropriate the Psalms as our own prayer. We will then learn and practice Compline, the final service or "office" of the monastic day.
Location: Redeemer Church Offices (directions) 11th Floor Conference Room
Susan Castillo is currently on Redeemer staff in the Fellowship Group department and is pursuing an MA in Biblical Counseling from Westminster Theological Seminary. She wholly espouses Reformed Presbyterian theology while continuing to embrace her “inner monk.” Sometimes referred to as “The Retreat Lady,” she has been fleeing to monasteries to “honeymoon with Jesus” for over ten years.
In addition Redeemer Presbyterian Church has a Spiritual Formation department. This is a heavily used term by Emergents/Contemplative Spirituality followers.
***NOTE***Let's not forget that Tim Keller has endorsed Eastern Mystic feminist Adele Calhoun's "Spiritual Disciplines Handbook" book, also endorsed by mystic Ruth Halye Barton, back in 2005:
Reviews & Endorsements
"I have long profited from Adele Ahlberg Calhoun's gifts in the field of spiritual development, and I am delighted that she has compiled her experience with spiritual disciplines into book form. I highly recommend it and I look forward to using it as a resource at our church." —Dr. Timothy Keller, Redeemer Presbyterian Church, NYC
"I love this book! Adele has provided a treasure trove of spiritual
disciplines that will nourish your soul, striking a delicate balance between accessibility and depth that comes from her own faithful practice. Read it, engage the disciplines, and allow God to transform you in the deepest levels of your being." —Ruth Haley Barton, cofounder, The Transforming Center, and author of Sacred Rhythms and Invitation to Solitude and Silence
"The Village Church lives to revolutionize Greenwich Village, through word and deed, into the pre-eminent expression of urban eternal life, by bridging those who don’t believe to the church, dancing believer with believer, and uniting all to Christ."
Don't worry if that hardly made any sense. Its Emergentese. It only continues....
"We spend a lot of our energy to accomplish nothing! Individually and in our 11:00 a.m. gathering each Sunday, we celebrate Jesus Christ as our connection to the Divine. Through celebrating His birth, life, death, resurrection and ascension, we inhale His grace and exhale our appreciation. This respiration of worship, with joy and reverence, is vital to who we are, an exhibition of excitement about knowing and walking with God.
The Village Church brings the Ancient forward to today. We find the historic Christian faith to be the means of navigating the turbulent choices of city life. We are creedal, sacramental and confessional in the Presbyterian tradition (PCA). The ministry of Word and Sacrament, Praise and Prayer, are means of grace we use weekly to proclaim both God’s transcendence and Christ’s invitation to immanence, in an eclectic style indigenous to Greenwich Village. We hail the Scriptures of the Old and New Testament, working constantly to reform the faith in our contemporary setting."
Sounds like New Age Eastern Mystic stuff.
Here are some articles to show you the dangers of Contemplative Spirituality and why it is unbiblical:
Contemplative Prayer: http://www.lighthousetrailsresearch.com/cp.htm
Contemplative Terms: http://www.lighthousetrailsresearch.com/contemplativeterms.htm