Why Stillpoint?

By Rev. Elizabeth Rechter, Executive Director

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Every year at this time, we ask for your continued financial support of the good work of Stillpoint. But why Stillpoint? What keeps us insisting this work must be tended? In lean and leaner years we continue. Why? As I contemplated this important question, Henri Nouwen’s wisdom came to me. I was reminded of the words of his poem, Choose Life.

Life is always small.
It is always vulnerable.
It never shouts or screams.
It always needs protection and guidance.
Saying “yes” to it means being willing to look at the small life that seeks to be born
in your heart, in your body, in your mind, among people.

Death is always glamorous.
Death shines; it is always big and noisy.
Death goes bang, bang!

Because life is very small, you can never see it happening.
Have you ever seen a tree actually grow?
Can you see a child grow?
Growth is too gentle, too tender.
Life is basically hidden.
It is small and begs for constant care and protection.
If you are committed to always saying “yes” to life,
you must become a person
who chooses it when it is hidden.
— HENRI NOUWEN, CHOOSE LIFE

It is to this hidden, small, tender life that Stillpoint is committed. It is not glamorous and it is not loud. We say ‘yes’ to this work as an open and inclusive contemplative community that invites people into a deeper experience of the Holy.

In forming spiritual directors to serve spiritual leaders and faith communities, we provide ongoing support for contemplative living. We send people into the world who are committed to the practice of deep listening, who draw alongside others to help them listen for the silent, tender movement of God in their life. And in offering one-day retreats and programs, we invite our expanding community to nourish their faith and connect that faith to action for building justice and peace. In the wilderness of this year, where fear, divisiveness, and death have been so loud, more than ever, the small, hidden life begs for our care and protection. 

Many have felt and expressed that our current affairs may have a silver lining that shimmers. We are needed. In order for love to arise it must be incarnated in us. And as we consider how to do this, we have many choices of good work to support. I hope you will consider supporting the good work of Stillpoint, as generously as you can, that we may be a viable partner in our world in tending the small, tender life that is in need of our constant care and protection. 

With gratitude for your companionship, 
Elizabeth+

Rev. Elizabeth I. Rechter Executive Director, Stillpoint

Rev. Elizabeth I. Rechter
Executive Director, Stillpoint

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