The Way of Radical Compassion
Practicing the Spiritual Path of Jesus
By Sister Greta
My master’s degree from Claremont School of Theology was focused on Spiritual Formation. What the heck is that you might ask? It’s all the ways that we grow in the love and knowledge of God. It is really about how we live into the two greatest commandments, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul and with all your mind… And the second is like it: You shall love your neighbor as yourself. On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets.” Mt 22. So how do we fulfill these seemingly simple yet as we know - exceedingly difficult commandments?
Professor Frank Rogers has developed a program to address exactly this. Grounded in the radical compassion that Jesus demonstrated, it is a three-fold program of compassion for one’s self, one’s neighbor, and even compassion for those we might see as enemies. The program is based in contemplative practices so that all the work emanates from a place of grounded connection with Divine Love.
This program is deeply healing and life-giving. I have found it so fruitful that I have become a certified facilitator and will be assisting in the program when we offer it at the monastery staring September 19. It is a 12-week program meeting every Tuesday from 7:00pm – 9:00pm.
The starting place is re-membering our sacred connection. We spend two weeks steeping in the life-giving love of God. We spend time in practice bringing back to our awareness those special moments when we felt most aware of our belovedness – most in tune with God’s presence in our lives.
Then we begin the work of integrating all of who we are. We begin to explore activated parts within us and what these parts are trying to tell us. If we are triggered we are not able to be compassion in the world. We discover what these activated parts need from us to feel safe and cared for. We become compassionate for ourselves and then are able to discover compassion for others – even those we perceive as enemies.
It is an absolutely wonderful program. Frank teaches through stories. His stories are spell-binding – and leave you in tears – sometimes of joy sometimes of heart-ache. But they always lead to deeper understanding even wisdom and certainly - compassion.
If you do not have the ability to join us – you can buy one of Frank’s books, which are sold on Amazon, and explore this vital work on your own. Or you can bring the program to your parish by contacting his organization through the website below.
Frank Rogers books: The Way of Jesus: Compassion in Practice, Upper Room Books. And Practicing Compassion, Fresh Air Books
To register for the program at the monastery or to bring the program to your parish: www.centerforengagedcompassion.com