Sustainable Faith School of Contemplative Life


The School of Contemplative Life (SCL) is a retreat-based, 24-month exploration of ancient spiritual practices that are formative, nourishing, and have the effect of changing people from the inside out.


We’ve created this leisurely-paced, communal and substantial introduction to the contemplative life for people who want to deepen their experience of God’s love, discover new ways of praying and reading Scripture, learn the power of silence and solitude, establish better rhythms of rest & recreation, understand what makes them tick, find healing in broken areas of life, examine strong & persistent desires, learn how to make better life choices, and acquire a sense of mission and purpose for life.

In his book Falling Upward, Richard Rohr speaks of two halves of life. In the first half, we fill a container. It’s characterized by climbing the ladder, growing families, awards, accomplishments, and often our identity. In the second half of life, we’re invited to unpack that container and gain something infinitely more valuable and lasting. The School of Contemplative Life is for those who want to start unpacking.

Sustainable Faith School of Contemplative Life (SCL)

Eight quarterly one-day retreats – two-year period – one beautiful retreat location!

I must listen to my life and soul and try to understand what it is truly about – quite apart from what I would like it to be about – or my life will never represent anything real in the world, no matter how earnest my intentions. Parker Palmer

Our SCL Schedule:

SCL is composed of eight overnight retreats held quarterly over a two-year period, with each retreat building slowly upon the other. The first four sessions focus heavily on your inner self. The last four help you become aware of how your inner work touches your outer world, culminating in a Rule of Life, and a stronger sense of mission. Each module is offered as an overnight retreat, going from late afternoon on Friday, ending around 4 pm on Saturday, and have a consistent rhythm of communal, experiential learning followed by individual communion with God and time to process afterward.


  • 4 pm – Arrive & Settle In
  • 6 pm – Dinner
  • 7 pm – Session I
  • 8:30 pm – Night Prayer
  • 8:45 pm Silence with God


  • 8 am – Morning Prayer/Break Silence
  • 8:15 am – Breakfast
  • 9 am – Session II
  • 10:30 am – Time with God
  • Noon – Lunch
  • 1 pm – Session III
  • 2:30 pm – Time with God
  • 3:30 pm Reflection & Closing Prayer
  • 4 pm – Dismiss

How Will I Know If Attending A SCL Is For Me?

Maybe you recognize yourself in one of the following statements:

  • I feel like I’ve been at a plateau for a while. What new frontiers might God inviting me to explore?
  • I’ve heard of spiritual disciplines, but I really don’t know how to make sense of them for my life.
  • I would like to grow in my ability to notice God in my everyday life.
  • I would like to know God better. I feel like I am at a stand-still in relating to Him.
  • I want to grow spiritually. What might be a few next steps?
  • I can’t see where I am in relation to God. I can’t see where I am headed.
  • My spiritual life doesn’t seem to work the way it used to. What is going on?
  • I would like to explore the intersection between my personal, spiritual life and my life of relationships and responsibilities.

Our SCL Module Overview:

Weekend #1:  SOUL REST: getting in touch with our desires through Jesus’ invitation to rest. Focus: Retreat/Discovery of Desire. Key Practice: Sabbath

Weekend #2: SOUL ROOM: creating space for God to change you from the inside out. Focus: Silence and Solitude. Key Practices: Silent Reflection & Prayer, Periods of Solitude

Weekend #3: SOUL FEEDING: learning to engage the scriptures for transformation. Focus: Being Nourished through Scripture. Key Practice: Lectio Divina w/ various accents

Weekend #4: SOUL CONNECTION: connecting to God through your body and prayer. Focus: The Body. Key Practices: Centering Prayer/Prayer Walking

Weekend #5: SOUL AWARENESS: knowing yourself better helps you know God better. Focus: Self-Awareness. Key Practice: Self-Examination via Enneagram

Weekend #6: SOUL HEALING: allowing God to touch you and heal you. Focus: Inner Healing. Key Practices: Attachment Inventory/Steps Toward Healing

Weekend #7: SOUL DISCERNMENT: making decisions in community. Focus: Discernment. Key Practices: Clearness Committee/Group Spiritual Direction

Weekend #8: SOUL MAKING: rearranging your life for transformation, mission, and community. Focus: Contemplative Activism. Key Practice: Developing a Rule of Life


CONTACT US if you are interested in bringing Sustainable Faith’s School of Contemplative Life (SCL) to your community!

Bollersandymartypic1b Come make room for your soul with Marty & Sandy Boller, long-time pastors & spiritual directors through a series of eight 24-hour getaways placed quarterly over a two-year period, designed to explore and embrace the relationship that God desires to have with you.  Questions? Contact Marty & Sandy Boller.

Take a look at this amazing story of one man’s story of transformation as he learned to slow down his life, walking at Godspeed rather than his own hurried pace…