Over the last year Fionnuala Quinn, the International Coordinator for Contemplative Outreach, has visited us twice at Westminster. The primary reason for her visits to the UK has been to help us train Presenters of the Method of Centering Prayer but as part of each visit she joined in and led our prayer meeting at the Hinsley Rooms in Westminster. In February 2016 she was accompanied by Grace Padilla who set up Contemplative Outreach in the Phillipines and shared with us her experience as a coordinator and how CP is flourishing there. On the same occasion Fionnuala gave an inspiring talk to the group on The Development of Centering Prayer. We are fortunate that Fionnuala has allowed us to share the content of this talk; you can read the text by clicking on the link at the bottom of this post.
Jill Benet writes:
Sr. Fionnuala Quinn is a Dominican Sister. She was born in Ireland and as part of her vocation found herself living in New Orleans for many years. It was there she discovered the practice of Centering Prayer through the work of Basil Pennington. She was trained by Contemplative Outreach in the US and when her order brought her back to Dublin she founded Contemplative Outreach Dublin where she has been energetic and generous in sharing the practice and training others to do the same.
Three years ago she was given the post of International Coordinator for Contemplative Outreach. This was the first time this post has been held by someone from outside the US. She has done a wonderful job of training people and offering support all over the world except in the Spanish-speaking countries of Central and South America where they have formed their own body called Extension Contemplativa.
Since becoming International Coordinator, she has established a relationship with the leadership teams at Contemplative Outreach Ltd., contributing to their monthly calls. She has raised awareness of the difficulties and needs of groups and individuals living at a distance from the main source of training and support materials. She has also been able to tell them about the growth and enthusiasm for the prayer outside the US.
She has been very supportive of our work in the UK and other parts of Europe. In the last four years individuals from the UK, Austria, Poland and the Czech Republic have been trained in London and Ireland to present the method of Centering Prayer. Her next port of call will be in the autumn when she has been invited to offer training to enable the groups in Trinidad to grow. Willing to go wherever she is called, Fionnuala “gets on with it”, faith-filled and as authentic as ever. We wish her every blessing on the journey!