"In contemplative prayer we seek to become the person we are called to be, not by thinking of God but by being with God."
- John Main
John Main (1926-1982), an English Benedictine monk, pioneered the practice of Christian meditation. His genius was to recover a way into the contemplative experience for ordinary people within the Christian tradition. Hailed by Bede Griffiths as the "most important spiritual guide in the church today, " Mains work inspired the foundation of the World Community for Christian Meditation and a network of hundreds of meditation groups around the world.
John Main introduces the practice of Christian meditation for modern people who wish to deepen their spiritual lives.
Laurence Freeman OSB is a monk of the Olivetan Benedictine Congregation of Monte Oliveto Maggiore and Director of The World Community for Christian Meditation. Freeman was born in England in 1951 where he was educated by the Benedictines and studied English Literature at Oxford University. In the monastery his spiritual teacher was John Main with whom he studied and whom he helped in the establishment of the first Christian Meditation Centre in London. In 1977, he went with John Main at the invitation of the Archbishop of Montreal to establish a Benedictine community of monks and laypeople dedicated to the practice and teaching of Christian meditation. Freeman studied theology at the Universite de Montreal and at McGill University, made his solemn monastic profession in 1979 and was ordained to the priesthood in 1980. After the death of John Main in 1982, he continued the work of teaching meditation that had now begun to develop a global community. In 1991, Fr Laurence returned to England to establish the International Centre of the newly formed World Community for Christian Meditation that is now present in more than a hundred countries. He is the Director of the WCCM Benedictine Oblate Community. In 2010 he launched the MEDITATIO outreach programme of the Community to mark the celebration of its twentieth anniversary.