"Abba Macarius was asked, ‘How should one pray?’ The old man said, ‘There is no need at all to make long discourses, it is enough to stretch out one’s hands and say, ‘Lord, as you will, and as you know, have mercy.’ And if the conflict grows fiercer say, ‘Lord, help!”2
Throughout the history of Christianity this type of prayer has been called by many different names; “prayer of the heart,” “the practice of the presence of God,” “the prayer of simplicity,” “the Jesus prayer,” “the prayer of the Name,” “monologistic prayer”3 and “the prayer of silence.” Despite its different names and slightly different approaches each form aspires to a contemplative dimension of prayer. This is described in The Catechism of the Catholic Church as “the symbol of the world to come,’ or ‘silent love.’ In this style of prayer, “words… are not speeches, they are like kindling that feeds the fire of love.” (CCC 2717)
The retreat, Into the Deep: Growing in intimacy with God through silent prayer is geared towards a deeper encounter with God in silence. The retreat will include 3 hours of silent prayer together in common. It is recommended that those who attend these retreats already have a regular prayer life and are comfortable with silence.
2 The Sayings of the Desert Fathers, 131.
3 The prayer of one word