Educating imaginative, resilient leaders for God's changing world.

Join Us for Study in Sacred Spaces

by Lifelong Learning Staff

Ecokaying devotional, Bahamas 2011. Photo: Karen Holmes

 Thoughtful, purposeful journeys can stir questions, lead to insight, build community, and give new energy and perspectives. Such journeys bring us closer to God and to one another.
Each year, the Center for Lifelong Learning offers opportunities to travel with others for the purpose of exploring the world through the lens of our Christian faith. Most recently, Mark Douglas, Steve Harrington, and Linda Morningstar led an eco-kayaking adventure during which participants spent five days sea kayaking in the Bahamas, camping on islands, exploring issues of environmental ethics, and renewing their spiritual lives. 
  This pilot program was well received; early planning for the next eco-outing is underway.
  While the Certificate in Spiritual Formation holds many of its classes in the spiritually rich atmosphere of Columbia Seminary, our explorations in Christian spirituality and spiritual practices also take us to other sacred places.
  At least two spirituality certificate classes each year are held at Montreat Conference Center in North Carolina. This April, Bruce Rigdon will lead an Eastern Orthodox Christianity class at Montreat, where we will not only behold the beauty of spring in the North Carolina mountains, but also will visit a local Eastern Orthodox Church.
  Annually, we hold a Women’s Contemplative Retreat and a Men’s Contemplative Retreat at monasteries in Alabama and Georgia. There, participants explore the contemplative life and monastic spiritual practices and participate in the liturgy of the hours along with the brothers and sisters of the monastery.
  The capstone course of the Certificate in Spiritual Formation is a pilgrimage. In the past, we have journeyed to holy places such as Iona, Taize, and the Holy Land.
This year’s pilgrimage to the Holy Land begins on Ash Wednesday. After spending a week in Galilee tracing the ministry of Jesus, we turn our eyes and hearts toward Jerusalem, where we walk the Via Dolorosa (the Stations of the Cross) and remember the last moments of Jesus’ life and celebrate his empty tomb.