Friday, July 19, 2013

Ruth Haley Barton's Transforming Center: A Path to Roman Catholicism & New Age Paganism


The Transforming Center: A Path to Roman Catholicism & New Age Paganism

Ruth Haley Barton, Co-Founder of The Transforming Center in Wheaton, Illinois, and author of several very contemplative books has a mission--a mission that is luring hundreds of deceived pastors, churches, leaders, and even entire denominations back into the mystical practices of Roman Catholicism, and New Age Paganism. While many have written endlessly about Barton’s books which are crammed with revered mothers and fathers of the Roman Catholic church, and contemporary contemplatives few have written about Barton’s Transforming Center--its location, its retreats, its agenda, its board/faculty, its spiritual directors, and its retreatants.

Thus, it is time to ask: What does “The Transforming Center” really teach? Whom does the “The Transforming Center” really want to reach? Where does “The Transforming Center” hold its endless retreats? Whom does “The Transforming Center” use to teach their “transforming” doctrine? What connections does the Roman Catholic Loretto Center, Bon Secours Retreat Center, Marytown Retreat Center, and; Cardinal Stritch Center have to Barton’s past and present? How is “The Enneagram” embedded in the program? How is the InterVarsity Press connected to the TC? Read on!  

The Transforming Center & The Loretto Center

* The TC is located at the Roman Catholic “Loretto Center” in Wheaton, Illinois.
* The TC is closely related to the Roman Catholic “Loretto Center.”

The Loretto Center:
* Location: Sixteen acres at 1600 Somerset Lane, Wheaton, Ill.
* Founded/Funded by: The Institute of the Blessed Virgin Mary
* Offers: conferences, workshops, retreats, staff-enrichment, team-building, planning, leadership training...
* Services: psychological counseling, spiritual direction, massage therapy, Reiki, individual/group retreats, workshop opportunities…
* Facilities: meeting rooms, conference rooms, bedrooms, dining, art studio, theater, garden, massage studio, woodland, offices, chapel, labyrinth…

The Loretto Center Director:
* SR. Arlene Ashack, IBVM (Institute of the Blessed Virgin Mary)
* Transforming Center Spiritual Director/ One of Barton’s chosen seventeen directors.
* Artist/Designer of Loretto Center’s Labyrinth
* Teacher of Upcoming Workshop: “Prayer by Other Names” along with Patti Essig of Yoga Energy and poet Karen Kuchar facilitator of workshop: “Wisdom Writing Circles (Patti Essig at Loretto)
* Designer of Logo for: “Institute of Communal Contemplation and Dialog” with links to such sites as: “Contemplation and Social Justice,” “Inner Explorations,” “Rumi,” “Thomas Merton,” “Institute for Noetic Sciences,” “Leadership Conference of Women Religious,” & “Global Policy and the United Nations,” “One World,” “New Cosmology” …

The Loretto Center Workshops:
* Loretto offers: workshop opportunities.
* Workshops: Tai Chi, Prayer by Other Names, Yoga Outdoors, Blast Away Procrastination, Wisdom Writing Circle, How to Create a New Vision for Your Life, The Fundamentals of Brennan (Barbara) Healing Science, QiGong Classes, Embodied Myth, Shamanic Healing, Chakra Workshop, Christmas Quiet ...

Questions:  What does this Roman Catholic "spiritual center" seem like?  Why would an "evangelical" like Ruth Haley Barton want to locate her Transforming Center there?  Does its director, Sister Ashack,  sound like someone who could be a "Spiritual Director?"

The Loretto Center Labyrinth:
* “The World-Wide Labyrinth Locator” pictures Loretto's Labyrinth and lists its type: Medieval, Chartres replica; its material: grass; its hours: daylight; its designer: Arlene Ashack; its builder: Arlene Ashack; and its size: 96 feet diameter.
* “The Loretto Center” invites you to a special prayer journey as you walk the labyrinth just outside its chapel doors. It says that the labyrinth is a metaphor for the center of your deepest self. When you walk it you will begin a sacred journey into self-understanding.
* “The Loretto Center” gives “General Guidelines for Walking a Labyrinth” as focus: clear your mind of distractions; experience: tune in to yourself and your surroundings; exit: the way our is different than the way you entered; reflect: record feelings, thoughts, and memories experienced during your walk; and walk often: the journey is always different.

Transforming Center Services at the Loretto Center Chapel:
* Good Friday Stations of the Cross Prayer Service: RHB/Rory Noland/TC Team lead services at LCC
* Advent Evening Prayer & Advent Reflections: RHB/Rory Noland /TC Team lead services at LCC

***** The Loretto Center’s pages contain several “quotations.” Pay attention to every quote; find out who these people are! Answers are only a quick click away!

The Transforming Center Newspaper Description
* A Wheaton Newspaper: Describes what the TC is about.
* TC Participants: Describe their retreats at the TC.

The Transforming Center and the Bon Secours Spiritual Center, Marriottsville, Md.

* The TC holds retreats at the Bon Secours Spiritual Center
* The Shalem Institute (where Ruth Haley Barton trained)  holds functions at Bon Secours

The Bon Secours Spiritual Center:
* Location: 1525 Marriottsville Road, Marriottsville, Md.
* Founded by: The Sisters of Bon Secours
* Description: High point of 313 acres adjacent to Patapsco State Park
* Offers: Meeting Rooms for retreats and conferences
* Workshops & Programs: Seminars, Friends of Bon Secours Days of Prayer, Circle of Trust Retreats, Yoga, Spiritual Direction ...
* Special Features: Chapel, Walking & Hiking Paths, Reflecting Pond, Labyrinth, Zen Peace Garden, Bookstore
* Surrounding the Center: Sisters of Bon Secours Provincial House; President’s Office of Sisters of B.S.; Marian Hall Residence; Vocation Office; Formation Office; Novitiate Office …

Bon Secours Spiritual Center Labyrinth:
* Type: Eleven circuit
* Location: Focal point of a one-acre sacred space
* Surroundings: Trees, and meditative benches
* Built: 1999 to celebrate the 175th anniversary of founding of the “The Sisters of Bon Secours in Paris”
* Designed for: Helping walkers to find peace, healing, and hope
* Stages of the Walk: purgation-a letting go or “detachment” of personal cares/stress; illumination-the center of the labyrinth where clarity/insight are often gained; and union-the return out renewed and refreshed

Bon Secours Spiritual Center “Centennial Peace Garden”:
* Type: Zen
* Marked by: a “Peace Pole” which declares “May Peace Prevail on Earth” in several languages
* Entrance: place to pray for peace and global unity
* With: gardens and “natural rooms” formed by large boulders

Bon Secours Spiritual Center & The Shalem Insitute/Rose Mary Dougherty:
* Continuously used by Shalem for all sorts of retreats and workshops
* 2013, Fall at Bon Secours: Shalem’s 40-Hour Contemplative Prayer Vigil as well as
Shalem Society’s Annual Gathering on “Trusting the Spirit”
* Zen Nun Rose Mary Mayoan Dougherty worked at Bon Secours
* Shalem Staff: Doughtery to help teach Class of 2014: “Spiritual Guidance Program;” Residency program will be at Bon Secours; 

Bon Secours Spiritual Center Bookstore:
* Description: Has more than 2000 titles in spirituality, prayer, spiritual direction, world religions, and poetry
* Especially featured: Joan Chittister, Anthony DeMello, Gerald May,** Thomas Merton, Henri Nouwen, Joyce Rupp,** Margaret Guenther ** (Gerald May Memorial Service at Bon Secours)
* Wooden Hand Labyrinth: “Many customers travel a great distance to purchase one special item--a wooden hand labyrinth used for meditation and prayer. People come from as far away as Philadelphia … to seek out these unique 15 by 15--inch square carved wooden labyrinths…”

** These have given lectures at Bon Secours.

Bon Secours Recent & Upcoming Transforming Center Retreats:
* East Coast Community: Click on the Transforming Center Travel Information & Directions to find Bon Secours
* Baltimore Area: Click on the Transforming Center Upcoming Events for retreats to be held at Bon Secours
* Baltimore Area: A future scheduled “For the Sake of Others Retreat” includes presenter M. Robert Mulholland Jr. (Transforming Center Faculty)

Question: Barton claims to have separated herself from her “Shalem” background. Is this the case? Think of all of the sacred spaces a TC retreatant visiting Bon Secours might visit.

The Transforming Center and Marytown Retreat Center

Marytown Retreat Center:
* Location: 1600 W. Park Ave., Libertyville, Illinois
* Established: 1997
* Area: Fourteen Acres
* Owned & Operated by: Conventual Franciscan Friars
* Facilities: Conference Center, Overnight Retreat House
* Sacred Spaces Spaces: A prayerful facility
* Also at Marytown: ( A place of Eucharistic Adoration consecrated to the Blessed Virgin Mary,
Our Lady of the Blessed Sacrament) a Perpetual Adoration Chapel; National Center for the Militia of the Immaculata (MI); National Shrine of St. Maximilian Kolbe; A Kolbe Holocaust Exhibit; Largest Catholic Gift Shop and Bookstore between Chicago and Milwaukee; and Home of Immaculata magazine and Marytown Press ...

**Marytown’s web page states: “Through God’s grace Marytown is becoming one of the most vibrant centers of Catholic renewal in the Midwest United States.” (Bookstore)

And it is to Marytown, and to its Retreat House that hundreds of Transforming Center retreatants journey over and over again. Check the schedule to see how many times someone in a TC program might come stay at Marytown or nearby Cardinal Stritch Center.

Marytown Perpetual Adoration Chapel
* Description: One of the most beautiful adoration chapels in the world
* Centerpiece: Five-feet-two-inch monstrance or Ostensorium
* Monstrance: For veneration and adoration of the Real Presence of our Lord
* Monstrance’s Design: Shows the Immaculate (Mary) crushing the serpent between her feet while leading all to true adoration of her Son present in the Sacrament of the Altar above her head
* Archdiocese of Chicago Adoration Site: Longest running site begun June 7, 1928

Marytown Pilgrimage Shrines:
* Shrines to visit: St. Francis of Assisi Peace Garden; Rosary Meditation Garden; Crucifixion Shrine, & Infant of Prague; Our Lady of Fatima; Stations of the Cross; Sacred Heart Shrine; Our Lady of Tears; Grotto of Our Lady of Lourdes; and St. Maximilian Kolbe Rose Garden
* Peaceful Setting: Fourteen acres in which to walk, rest, pray, and meditate

Explore the Marytown site with all of its idolatrous statues/shrines, perpetual adoration chapel, and huge monstrance to worship and answer honestly whether this is a place “evangelicals” by the hundreds should be coming to “to rest their souls in God?” The TC writes: “We try very hard to hold our retreats in beautiful places …” And Roman Catholic Marytown is this place? The TC also notes: As you enter the retreat center a greeter will point out important locations. They write:
You will want to take note of the chapel space, in particular, because hopefully your soul will feel drawn to spend time there in worship and intimacy with God--- perhaps even before the retreat officially begins.” (TC “Frequently Asked Questions” Pages)

The Transforming Center and the Cardinal Stritch Retreat House

The Cardinal Stritch Retreat House:
* Location: 1300 Stritch Drive, Mundelein, Il
* Supported by: Archdiocese of Chicago/other benefactors
* Founded: 1950s
* Area: 900 acres of forest/water
* Surrounded by: University of St. Mary at the Lake; Chapel of the Immaculate Conception; Residences; a classroom building; the refectory; library/resource center; administration building; gymnasium; conference and guest facilities; a convent; villa for the Archbishop of Chicago (Cardinal George)…

The Cardinal Stritch Retreat House Directors:
* Director: Monsignor Dennis J. Lyle
* Former Director: Deacon Richard Hudzik**

** Note: “Deacon Hudzik” is a Transforming Center “Spiritual Director.” ** See The TC list of approved Spiritual Directors, Spiritual Mentors, & Psychologist. TC says “The TC is pleased to offer you a list of resources that includes spiritual directors … known personally by those in the TC… Each director or consultant has a general practice that we would recommend for all areas of need.”

The Cardinal Stritch Retreat House Programs:
* Retreat House Retreats: Offers a Deacons Retreat; Retreat for Priests; Jesus Caritas Month, Nazareth Retreat; Retreat for Women Religious; Directed Silent Retreat; Retreat for Mundelein Seminary Alumni; Preached Retreat; Priest Training; …
* Retreat House Spiritual Director: Sister Georgene Wilson, OSF: artist, holistic; healing arts; and other New Age type agendas Sister Georgene says: “Through the ministries of ‘Wisdom Webbings Anchorhold’ to accept themselves as Good, Wisdom and Grace-filled, and incredibly free to love.”

Transforming Center Retreats at Marytown, Bon Secours, & Palisades Retreat Centers:
* Upcoming Events Marytown: June 2013-October 2015: As of June 2013- nineteen retreats
* Upcoming Events Bon Secours: June 2013-October 2015: As of June 2013- four retreats
* Upcoming Events Palisades: June 2012-October 2015: As of June 2013- one retreat (Events) (Palisades)

The Transforming Center Frequently Asked Questions:

*  Question: “Why do you have two retreat centers in the Chicago area?” Answer: Marytown has room for prayer/teaching/ meetings, but not enough sleeping rooms; thus Cardinal Stritch is used for overflow.
*  Question: “What does this (TC) look like in every day operations? Answer: “We have our offices at the Loretto Center located in a quiet neighborhood in Wheaton, Illinois. This location provides us with great spaces to welcome people for quiet reflection, spiritual direction, guided retreats, and prayer services.” And what a neighborhood that is with great spaces like a convent, a labyrinth, a Catholic chapel, a retreat house and programs ( e.g. yoga, Reiki, holistic healing, labyrinth prayer walks, wisdom writing circles…).

The Transforming Center Community Personal Testimony Video

TCC Member Testimonies:
* Five TCC participants: Rev. Dr. David Hughes (RHB Board/Retreat Faculty) (Pastor: First Baptist Church, Winston-Salem, NC) ; Rev. Dr. Jonathan Taylor Haley (RHB Board/Faculty) (Pastor: First Presbyterian Church, LaCrosse, WI); Dr. Bryson Brazier (Apostolic Church of God, Chicago, Ill.); Rev. Melanie H. Clark (Covenant Presbyterian Church, Racine, WI), & Kelly Kastens (Director Programming & Worship, Mt. Christian Church, Joppa, MD)®-2/
* Participants Praise: TCC experiences of silence and solitude, community sharing, eight every three month retreats, meetings with own TCC Spiritual Director, practicing disciplines back home, and reading recommended TCC books
* Buzz Words/phrases Used: authentic self, community, present to, transformation of one’s soul, discernment, spiritual director, journey
* Member Remarks: Rev. Clark: reading list impressive; Dr. Haley: TCC spiritual director so helpful and practice at home church great; Dr. Hughes: idea “transformation of soul” new and challenging
* TCC Ad: Shown every few minutes enticing new leaders to sign up for the two-year course
* Rev. Clark’s Covenant Pres. Church site story: June 2013 newsletter “The Tidings” (written by co-pastor Rev. Victoria Millar) two page article “Back to Centered” teaching contemplative prayer
* Millar Quote: “Melanie (Rev. Clark) and I whole-heartedly commend to you as a spiritual practice, a powerful form of prayer called contemplative or centering prayer which is a response to the grandeur of God.”
* “Back to Centered” Article : Christian Century (Rodney Clapp) calls for sitting quietly in a straight-backed chair, getting rid of distracting thoughts and …

The Transforming Center Faculty

The TC has a team of nine people that make up the TC faculty who make significant contributions to TC events. These include: RHB, and eight others.

The Transforming Center List of Spiritual Directors

The TC offers a list of eighteen (including Barton) spiritual directors, spiritual mentors, a psychologist, and a sabbatical consultant who are known personally by those in the Transforming Center. Most of these listed offer their services in the context of Transforming Center retreats or Transforming Center Communities. These persons also are said to adhere to Guidelines for Ethical Conduct put forward by the Spiritual Directors International.
Notice the  Thomas Merton  quotation at the top of the page!  

Just who are these spiritual directors and consultants? And if they are “known personally” what do these people really practice? Really believe? Really teach?

The Transforming Center Spiritual Director List:

Sr. Arlene Ashack, IBVM (Institute of the Blessed Virgin Mary):
* Director: The Loretto Center (See above!)
* Studied at: The Claret Center, Chicago (Resources for the Human Journey)
* Claret’s Services: Psychotherapy, Spiritual Companioning, Sacred Dance, Workshops, Retreats…
* Claret’s Goal for Spiritual Direction: “For people of all faith traditions…”

Dr. Ruth Haley Barton:
* Cofounder/President: The Transforming Center
* Studied at: The Shalem Institute for Spiritual Formation
* Studied: The Enneagram with Russ Hudson of The Enneagram Insitute
* Specialization: Corporate Discernment with leadership groups
* Taking: “directees” only from leadership groups
* InterVarsity Press: Contract to write six more books

Rev. Adele Calhoun:
* Co-Pastor: Redeemer Community Church, Needham, Ma
* Studied Spiritual Directorship at: Roman Catholic La Salette Seminary, Ispwich, Ma
* Founding Board Member: The Transforming Center
* InterVarsity Fellowship: Once in this organization
* Wrote: IVP Formatio Spiritual Disciplines Handbook: Practices that Transform Us (Part of a set with three other RHB TC books)
* Handbook: RHB’s endorsement on back; RHB named (p. 9) as one who had urged, prodded, and encouraged her to finish her book
* “Covenant Group:” member with Karen Mains, Marilyn Stewart**, Linda Richardson**, Sibyl Towner**, Jane Rubietta...
* Enneagram Coach: Conducts workshops with husband Doug
* Wrote: IVP Formatio Invitations from God with an RHB endorsement/ thanks to Ruth (p199) for the invitation from God the TC offers
* “Covenant Group:” (pp.60-61) Karen and group named
* IVP Transforming Center Plug: Two page ad; advertises AC and RHB books/ TC two yr pastor/leadership program

** These three Covenant Group members also are RHB spiritual directors!

Alice Fryling:
* Husband: Robert Fryling: Publisher IVP, Sr. V.P. InterVaristy Christian Fellowship
* Studied at: Christos Center for Spiritual Formation, Mn
* Author: Seeking God Together: An Introduction to Group Spiritual Direction
* Chapter Three Book Recommendation: Zen nun Rose Mary Dougherty’s (Shalem) The Lived Experience of Group Direction
* Book Quotes: from Gerald May, Tilden Edwards, Thomas Merton, David Benner, Mindy Caliguire, M. Robert Mulholland Jr., Henri Nouwen…
* Enneagram Facilitator: Partners with Jessie Vicha presenting: “The Enneagram: A Tool for Transformation”
* Alice Fryling named in article: “The Enneagram GPS: Gnostic Path to Self” by Marcia Montenegro
* Robert Fryling: Author: The Leadership Ellipse endorsed by RHB, Phyllis Tickle, Albert Haase, O.F.M. (author of Coming Home to Your True Self)
* Admired by/Quoted by: Sibyl Towner in her Willow Creek Spiritual Formation Classes

Rev. Bill Haley:
* Anglican Priest: Associate Rector of the Falls Church
* Member: RHB TC Retreat Leadership & Faculty
* Studied at: The Shalem Institute for Spiritual Formation
* Publisher: Re:generation Quarterly Magazine
* Writer:  The Washington Post, The Washington Institute, Prism, Sojourners
* Owner: Corhaven Retreat Farm with RC wife Cara
* Cara Haley: Admirer of Mother Teresa; Member Blessed Sacrament Catholic Church

Rick Hatem:
* RC Spiritual Director: Henri Nouwen Society
* Studied at: Spiritual Renewal Center, Syracuse, NY
* Supervisor: “Wellstreams Ecumenical Program of Spiritual Formation & Training”
* Author: Drawn to the Living Water: Twenty Years of Spiritual Discovery
* Presenter: “Living Awards Breakfast”: “Hope for Today” from St. John Holy Rosary Roman Catholic Church

Deacon Richard (Dick) Hudzik
* Former Director: Cardinal Stritch Retreat House, Mundelin, Ill.
* Formation Classes at: University of St. Mary at the Lake Seminary
* Deacon Formation Program: RC Archdiocese of Chicago
* Co-Vicar Chicago’s Diaconate Community: Appointed by Francis Cardinal George, OMI
* Minister: St. Maria Goretti Parish, Church of St. Mary Parish
* Deanery Deacon Coordinator: Part of Deanery C of Vicariate I
* Board Member: Christ in the Wilderness Retreat Center

Brenna Jones:
* Connected to: Contemplative Karen Mains’ “Hungry Souls” Group
* Studied at: Christos Center for Spiritual Formation, Minneapolis, Mn
* Coauthor: With husband Stan of God's Design for Sex from NavPress
* Retreat Leader: With Karen Mains & Karen Franzen (Willow Creek) of Retreats of Silence at St. Mary’s Monastery, Rock Island, Illinois
* St Mary’s: Sisters of St. Benedict; Benet House Retreat Center; Join them for Lauds, Noon Prayers, & Vespers; a lovely place …

Rev. Claire Loughrige:
* Cofounder & lead pastor: Crossroads Church & Ministries, Marshall, Mich!search/profile/person?personId=357380976&targetid=profile
* Studied at: Christos Center for Spiritual Formation, Minneapolis, Mn
* Area of Specialization: Enneagrams
* International Enneagram Association: Nine Points Magazine article by Claire Loughrige
* Wrote Article:: “Back to the Future: Motions of the Soul and The iEnneagram”: quotes/recommends RC priest Richard Rohr’s book: The Enneagram: A Christian Perspective
(RHB also quotes Rohr in her books.)
** WHERE DID LOUGHRIGE LEARN ABOUT ENNEAGRAMS?** Read her quote from the “Back to the Future: … The iEnneagram” article:
“Let me offer you my personal journey. I was introduced the Enneagram while on a two-year quarterly retreat journey of spiritual transformation for leaders with the Transforming Center … Meantime, the two-year retreat course at the TC included academic and experiential learning: Ignatian practices of Examen, Ignatian Meditation (Finding yourself in the story), and practicing movements of Consolation and Desolation (motions of the soul) …”
* RHB Quote: Loughrige quotes RHB, prolific author and President of the TC, as defining “discernment this way: “Spiritual discernment…truth (John 16:7-15)” (Pursuing God’s Will Together)
* End of Article: Loughrige states she is a “Spiritual Director for Christian Leaders at the TC”
* 2012 “International Enneagram Association International Conference” in Long Beach Cal.
Main Speakers: Russ Hudson (RHB Instructor), David Daniels, and Cheri Huber (Zen Teacher/Zen Monastery Peace Center)
* Same Conference: Claire Loughrige: Sunday AM Session: “Ignatius 3 Centers Approach for Integrated Life Direction”
* Enneagram Center of Maryland: “Meditation & the Enneagram” by guest teachers
* Enneagram Center Guest Teachers: First Guest: Rimi Riegel, Unitarian Universal Church; Later guest: Rev. Claire Loughrige doing “Meditation & Type 3”
* “Crossroads Transforming Retreats:” Quarterly retreats beginning fall 2013 at Crossroads Church, Marshall, MI with Claire/husband
* Retreats based on MSG Matthew 11:28-30: “Get away with me and you’ll recover your life. I’ll show you how to take a real rest. Walk with me and work with me-- watch how I do it. Learn the unforced rhythms of grace. I won’t lay anything heavy or ill-fitting on you. Keep company with me and you’ll learn to live freely and lightly” (Eugene Peterson, The Message)
* Primary Retreat Curriculum: RHB’s Sacred Rhythms book; Coupled with Scott & Claire’s over ten years retreat experience with the TC
* Retreat Opportunities: practical guidance for practicing spiritual disciplines in community, option to join two year community with nine retreats, and guidance with a spiritual friend

Kim Nielsen:
* TC Community Coordinator for Transforming Center Community: Arranges retreats
* TC Facebook: Full-Page Photo: Kim as 1st grad from TC Community partnership with Northern
Theological Baptist Seminary** in “Master’s Specialization in Spiritual Transformation”
* “Transforming Experiences:” Kim’s All Things CONTEMPLATIVE page; quotes from RHB, Richard Rohr, Sufi Rumi, Sufi Hafiz, David Benner, Barbara Brown Taylor, Thomas Merton, Ignatius, …; links to Richard Rohr’s Daily Meditations, Midday Meditation with Photo doing “Visio Divina;” Renovare and Renovare Book Club; “dotMagis: The Blog of Ignatian Spirituality;”  Dr. David Benner’s website; Sibyl’s (Towner) Book Club; The Transforming Center; ...
* Mentor, Friend, Spiritual Director: Sybil Towner (See below.)
* Facilitator: For The Enneagram from CrossPoint Ministry
* Facilitator: with One LifeMaps (Sibyl Towner)

** RHB is an adjunct professor here; NTBS partners with the TC

The Transforming Center and The Enneagram

* The Enneagram & The TC: Embedded into the TC program.
* The Enneagram & RHB: Ruth’s bio: She studied the Enneagram under Russ Hudson of The Enneagram Institute.
* The Enneagram & TC Retreat #6: “Transformation Through Self-Knowledge & Self-Examination”
* The Enneagram & Retreat #6 Topics: Monday Topic: AM: “The Enneagram: A Tool for Self-Knowledge;” Monday Topic PM: “The Enneagram: A Tool for Self-Knowledge (cont.)
* The Enneagram & The Spiritual Directors/Other TC Workers: Read here all of those who have been openly involved with this practice!

The Transforming Center Spiritual Directors Continued:

Rev. Dr. Alice J. Petersen:
* Pastor: Presbyterian Church USA
* Studied at: Shalem Institute of Spiritual Formation
* Specialization: Clergy and professional church workers
* Associated with: Burke Presbyterian Church
* Married to: Rev. Bill Lowery, Peacekeeper
* Petersen: Into Contemplative Ministry; contemplative prayer; Sabbath-keeping
* Burke Church: Contemplative Services; Labyrinth Ministry: one inside and one out

Rev. Linda Richardson:
* Priest: Anglican Church of the Savior, Wheaton, Illinois
* Husband: Rev. William Richardson, Rector
* Studied at: Christos Center for Spiritual Formation
* Covenant Friend: Of Adele Calhoun & Karen Mains’ “Hungry Souls” ministry
* Church of the Savior Spiritual Formation  Department:

Stephen W. Smith:
* Author: Marriage (2006: Smith & Gary Chapman);
* Work (2006: Smith, Fil Anderson, Robert A. Fryling, & Craig Glass)**
* The Transformation of a Man's Heart (2006: Smith & Dr. Gary Chapman);
* The Lazarus Life (2008);
* Soul Custody (2010: Gary Chapman, PhD. cover endorsement);
Soul Shaping (2011: Back Cover: Fil Anderson); The Jesus Life (2012);
** NOTE: Robert Fryling: husband to RHB Spiritual Director/Enneagram Facilitator Alice Fryling; part of IVP team; Fil Anderson is a NC spiritual director/author;
* Smith’s Quotes/Notes: Uses Peterson’s The Message; admires Peterson; books full of contemplatives;
* Book Ads: Most include a page ad touting The Potter’s Inn; note RHB Spiritual Director list includes The Potter’s Inn web site;
* Studied at: Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, Fuller Theological and Trinity Evangelical Divinity School
* Specialization: Soul Care for leaders in the ministry/marketplace
* Founder of: The Potter’s Inn (Aspen Ridge, Co.)
* The Potter’s Inn Mission: Spiritual Formation/Soul Care
*  Some Potter’s Inn Retreats/Activities:
* “Enneagram Retreat: A Window to the Soul” (2011, Martie McMane);
“Understanding Yourself and Others: The Enneagram Retreat” (3-13, Jim Cofield);
“Understanding Yourself and Others: The Enneagram Retreat” (10-13, Anissa Ferris);
“Experience Labyrinth Prayer"(5-13); “Soul Care Days” (Tuesdays);
“Meditation Garden with Water Wheel;”
“Soul Care Five-Day Retreat” (Daily Office/Divine Hours; Silence/Solitude);
*  "Group Missionary Retreat” (11-13, Spiritual Direction Offered);
Spiritual Director (D. Sachsenmaier);

Marilyn & Douglas Stewart:
* Pastors Emeriti: Church of the Savior
* Marilyn Training: Christos Prayer Center for Spiritual Direction
* Doug & Marilyn: Spiritual Formation/other positions for InterVarsity Christian Fellowship
* Doug & Marilyn: Lead “Silent Retreats:” Various Churches
* Marilyn: Part of “The Covenant Group” with Karen Mains, Adele Calhoun, Sibyl Towner, & others

Sibyl Towner:
* Director of Spiritual Mentoring/Mentoring Director for Women’s Ministry: Willow Creek Community Church (Bill Hybels)
* Teacher: Classes/Courses in Spiritual Mentoring at WCCC
* Spiritual Mentor: Transforming Center
* Spiritual Director: TC Retreats
* Specialization: prayer; family of origin issues, and the Enneagram
* Co-founder: One Life Maps
* Co-Author: Listen to My Life
* Facilitator: Leadership Network: “Listen to My Life Retreats”
* Sibyl’s Monthly Bookclub Suggestions: e.g. Parker Palmer book
* Listen to My Life: courses/retreats/workshops with “personal coaches”
* Co-Director with husband: “The Springs” Retreat Center (Oldenburg, Indiana)
* The Springs Amenities: A Labyrinth; “The Gathering Space;” (for Breath Prayer, Lectio Divina …)
* An Fall 2013 Spring’s Event: “Body, Mind, & Spirit: A Women’s Retreat with Yoga”

Rev. Dr David Hughes:
* Pastor: First Baptist Church of Winston-Salem, NC
* Part of TC: Since 2007
* RHB Board & Retreat Faculty: Travels often to TC
* RHB Transforming Center Community Video: A pastor participant touting the TC
* “Hughes Sabbatical Blog” (10-12): Had traveled to Chicago for TC retreat; goes on to Oldenburg;
* First Time Private Retreat: **Oldenburg Franciscan Center, Oldenburg, Indiana**
* Oldenburg Retreat: Spent in Silence/Solitude except when with a “spiritual director”
* Cincinnati Conference: Two-Day Enneagram Tool of Understanding Program
* Enneagram Seminar: “The Enneagram & Grace: 9 Journeys to Divine Presence” (Sept.
29-30, 2012) Cincinnati, Ohio
* Enneagram Teachers: Richard Rohr and Russ Hudson (Ruth Haley Barton Teacher)
* “The Springs” Visit: With dear spiritual friends: Dick & Sibyl Towner
* Hughes’ Reflections: Faced Franciscan Private Retreat with excitement/trepidation; his own father questioned what he’d do there; end result Hughes says: “…the combination of solitude, silence, and skillful spiritual direction, not to mention the seminar (Enneagram!) and time with friends (The Towners) that followed proved to be a potent combination to the deepening of my relationship with myself (my emphasis) and God that far exceeded my expectations. Because the experience is still fresh, it will take me some time to unpack it much less discuss it publicly. But eventually I expect you will be hearing more about it, post-sabbatical.”
* More About My Sabbatical Blog” (12-12):;_ylt=As4H2nhmFxp_Ly5PnW9A6XWbvZx4?
* Books: read many; most impacting-Dallas Willard’s The Great Omission;
* Franciscan Retreat: “…met a remarkable spiritual director who guided me into a journey that took me deeper into the soul and psyche than I had ever been …”
* Enneagram Conference: “…used a tool called the Enneagram to examine my particular pattern of false self behaviors…”
* Result of Sabbatical: Developed “A Rule of Life” to guide my spiritual rhythms; added "The Vital Practice of centering prayer to my menu of spiritual rhythms
* Hughes' Quotes: “As it happens people who operate primarily from their heads… benefit greatly when they learn to turn off their minds, center down their souls, and simply listen to God in the stillness.”
“Simply put church leaders cannot take people where they themselves have not gone. …so my first priority must be my own discipleship and spiritual formation.” (sounds very Ruth Bartonish!)
* Hughes’ Current Agenda: Reading widely what churches/organizations doing to launch spiritual formation journeys; helping launch the TC’s new program: “Leading the Transforming Church”
* Online Services/Sermons After Sabbatical:
* 1-6-13 Service: “Epiphany” is introduced through Peter Paul Rubens’ art; pageantry; decorations; candles with communion; poems; quotes; song, ritual, sermon, and scripture; continuous buzz words thrown out as: deep, epiphany, journey, community, transforming, Christ follower …
* 1-13-13 Service: Worship Leader: scripture reading rituals (e.g. “This is the Word of God. Thank-you God!”); teaches “Pass the peace!” ritual (“The peace of Christ be with you. And with you!”); ;”
Members: going deeper at “4-D Wednesdays” using buzz words like spiritual formation team, discernment team, diversity, community…
* 1-13-13 Sermon: His sabbatical: how life changing his spiritual direction experience was; his turn-around on embracing “Christian mystics”; His Meditation Suggestions: With an icon/image; points out a cross over baptistery as a marvelous icon; With scripture: uses Isaiah passage as example for meditation; says read slowly, let words soak in, resist hurry, let it wash over your soul, and just “be” with God; suggests congregation relax, close eyes, and practice this meditative experience; With water: speaks of water and baptism; directs congregants to four bowls of water; at these bowls someone, on behalf of God, will dip their finger into the water, make a sign of the cross on a person’s hand, and bless them…
Note: What was done during these services was to take every opportunity to introduce/talk about a new “order of service,” and new “experiences.” But, what was not done was to preach the gospel!

Baptist pastor, Dr. David Hughes’ story, is but one of hundreds of pastors and church leaders who have dipped their toes into the Transforming Center’s contemplative mysticism; and slowly but surely retreat by retreat, book by book, ritual by ritual, prayer by prayer, and experience by experience have sunk deeper and deeper into its mystical muck. The Bible says that “by their fruits” we will know them. (Matthew 7:20)

Rev. Dr. Connie Wilson:
* Pastor: United Methodist Church
* Studied at: Benedictine Souljourners Formation Program for Spiritual Direction (Sophia Center), Archison, Ks.
* Affiliated with: New Way Ministries School for Spiritual Direction
* Specialization: Clergy, lay leaders; group spiritual direction

This paper was written with one goal in mind: that is expose what the true agenda of the TC is, and just where much of this agenda is carried out, and with whom this is done. When one examines the retreat denominations, the retreat churches, the retreat directors, the retreat locations, the retreat outlines, the retreat practices, and the retreat materials it is totally apparent where all this is leading-- straight back to Rome! And it is not just leading back into Roman Catholicism, much of what is being presented often is Roman Catholicism! And thousands from every denomination and organization have joined, and are joining with the TC on this journey. And who cares about these deceived souls that Ruth Haley Barton, and her cohorts are luring in? We must! You must! I must! We must sound the warning before it is too late, for surely many wolves in sheep’s clothing have entered in among us, and are devouring the sheep.

Acts 20:29-30 KJV “For I know that after my departing shall grievous wolves enter in among you, not sparing the flock. Also of your own selves shall men arise, speaking perverse things , to draw away disciples after them.”



Thursday, July 18, 2013

Pasco Washington’s Faith Assembly Quotes Zen Nun Rose Mary Dougherty, Zen Sensei (Teacher) from The Silver Springs Zendo/One Heart Sangha, to Highlight Their “Alongside Ministry”

A Rosemary Dougherty quote heads up the “Alongside Ministry” of Washington’s Pasco Faith Assembly.
Pasco is the home of the “credentialed” Spiritual Formation Pastor Gail M. Johnsen, good friend of Jodi Detrick, and author of many AOG “Woman in Ministry” articles and teacher of Spiritual Formation Retreats. See:

To say having the quote of Sensei “Rose Mary Myoan Dougherty” is “shocking” on an AOG church site is an understatement. Who would want to quote a teacher of Zen Buddhism, who is a dharma holder in the lineage of the White Plum Asanga, who is part of a “Sangha,” who does Zen “zazzen” (sitting meditation), who does Zen “kinhin” (walking meditation), who participated in a March 2013“At-One-Ment-Intensive Residential Sesshin” at Woodside Parkway Zendo, and who is a Roman Catholic Senior Fellow for Spiritual Guidance from the Shalem Institute? Besides, Rose Mary Myoan (Zen Meaning: Light in Darkness) Dougherty is listed on the “Sweeping Zen Website” as someone in the “Who’s Who in Zen.” And then she’s also listed as being affliated with the “Zen Peacemakers Sangha.” (Note: Rosemary is spelled with two words; check the Shalem site.) See:

And where does this Rose Mary Dougherty quote come from? It comes from Rose Mary Doughtery’s book Group Spiritual Direction (1995) p.13. This is a book filled with quotes from such men as Thich Nhat Hahn, a Buddhist Vietnamese monk, and “Father of the New Age” French priest Teilhard de Chardin. This is a book with an endorsement by Gerald D. May (Shalem ) who was also a Zen follower having written the foreword to Kim Boykin’s Zen for Christians: A Beginner’s Guide.

In the book Dougherty writes about Thich Nhat Hahn as saying “The one is many, and the many are one. To be is to inter-be. We cannot be by ourselves alone. We are to inter-be with every other thing.” Dougherty also continues: “In the practice of Buddhism, for instance, one is frequently of the Sangha just as surely as we seek refuge in the Buddha who is our Inner Teacher.”

Again, Ruth Haley Barton, herself, uses this same Rose Mary Dougherty quote in her December 2006 article “ A Community of Waiting and Expectation.” Placing the quote front and center, in her article, Barton obviously had much admiration for her former teacher; and from the prominent place Barton still places the names of her former mentors in her bios-Edwards, May, and Dougherty-she is unashamed of her time spent at the New Age Shalem Institute.

I ask the questions: How can an AOG Church have a quote from a nun that is and has been heavily into Zen for years? What is the AOG stand on Zen? How can an AOG Church have anything to do with anyone (Ruth Haley Barton) who would study under such a lady and still let everyone know about this lady and her associations? These “credentialed” ladies: Pastor Gail Johnsen and Dr. Jodi Detrick, for two, may have all the courses and education, and the best intentions in the world; but they are encouraging and introducing into the AOG Women’s Ministry and like groups “Spiritual Formation Teaching” by praising and quoting such people as Rose Mary Dougherty and Ruth Haley Barton. Not only are they reading Barton, but they are reading and quoting many others as Zen admirers Thomas Merton and Henri Nouwen, and Roman Catholic mystics Teresa of Avila, and St. John of the Cross.

I am shocked that the AOG is allowing these ladies to begin to take AOG people down the path of “Spiritual Formation” under such persons as named above. And what I write is but the tip of the ice berg; pages could be written on some of the books and resources Gail Johnsen is now widely recommending to unsuspecting and undiscerning men and women in all of her transformational writings. See: This dissemination needs to be stopped before many more flee right back into the welcoming arms of the Roman Catholic Church.

Learn to Discern Granny Verse:  "Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep's clothing..."  Matt. 7:15