“Sought through prayer and meditation to improve our conscious contact with God, as we understood Him, praying only for knowledge of His will for us and the power to carry that out." Step Eleven
Contemplative Outreach Ltd. was founded in 1984 to encourage the practice of Centering Prayer, which is based on an ancient prayer practice. Thomas Keating, OCSO is one of the founders of the Centering Prayer movement and Contemplative Outreach, a spiritual network that teaches Centering Prayer and provides a support system for those who practice it. He is the author of many books and recorded presentations on Contemplative Prayer. The practice of Centering Prayer, and the spiritual, historical and psychological basis of it, are described and elaborated in several of Thomas Keating's works, including Open Mind, Open Heart and Invitation to Love.
In 2001, The 12 Step Outreach program of Contemplative Outreach was established to offer Centering Prayer to people in all 12 Step fellowships as an 11th Step prayer/meditation practice. We help individuals and groups establish contemplative prayer practices through workshops, retreats and formation programs. Thomas Keating's book Divine Therapy and Addiction reflects on the wisdom and the legacy of Alcoholics Anonymous and all 12 Step programs.
The practice of Centering Prayer has parallels with other spiritual traditions and is easy to do. For those who live by the 12 Steps found in AA, Al-Anon, ACA, OA, DA, NA, GA, and other programs, a Centering Prayer practice can be a key support system in the process of recovery and transformation.
Centering Prayer can help deepen our application of the 12 Steps generally, and the 11th Step specifically, through daily immersion in prayer and meditation. We believe that, when applied as a daily supplement to the 12 Steps, Centering Prayer opens us to the deepest dimensions of spirituality.