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Learning how to meditate

The Janssen Centre offers a number of opportunities to learn how to meditate and to nurture you in your meditative practice.  The Centre currently offers the following meditation programmes: three Centering Prayer Groups, a Thomas Merton Contemplative Living Program, Christian Yoga Meditation Classes.  New programmes will be offered in 2015, including, Centering Prayer Retreat Days, Satsang Contemplative Prayer Groups, Sessions on 'The Cloud of Unknowing', etc.


How to Meditate

Learning how to meditate is as easy as breathing slowly and deeply. One begins by relaxing and focusing on the breath  You may already know that meditation can help improve the quality of your life. 

It is highly recommended that one meditate with others whenever one has the opportunity.  More on what groups may be available near you in just a minute.

Here are a few tips to help you get the most from your meditation time. 


  1. Find a time when you will not be disturbed by family or friends.  Sit upright in a straight-back chair.

  2. Relax your body, especially your facial muscles, close your eyes gently and allow your face to relax into a half smile.

  3. Be aware of your breathing, follow your breath as you inhale and exhale slowly and deeply.

  4. Choose a word or symbol which expresses your intention to consent to God's presence and action in your life.

  5. Recite the sacred word gently as you breath.

  6. Whenever your mind begins to wonder, return to the sacred word as you re-center yourself.

  7. Continue your meditation for approximately 20 minutes, or longer if you feel so inclined.

  8. At the end of your meditation period, sit in silence for a few minutes.


Centering Prayer Meditation Groups at the Janssen Centre

We recommend a form of meditation known as 'Centering Prayer', as promoted by Fr Thomas Keating, an internationally renowned Trappist monk who has encouraged Centering Prayer Meditation Groups around the world. 

Numerous opportunities exist to learn to meditate with others.


Meditating in a group can help you deepen your practice.  There are three Centering Prayer Groups at the Janssen Centre:

  • Group 1 meets on the first and third Wednesday of the month at 7.30pm

  • Group 2 meets every other Tuesday of the month at 10am

  •  Read More>> about Centering Prayer in Australia


Other Centering Prayer Meditation Groups around Melbourne:

1.   4/29 Broomfield Ave, Alphington 3078: every Tuesday at 7.30pm;  Contact: Sr Helen Duffy RSM; Contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

2.  Stella Maris Church, 49 Cloris Avenue, Beaumaris 3193; Every Thursday morning at 8.30am; Contact: Breda Hertaeg; Tel: 9584 6681  Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

3.  St Ambrose Parish House, 287 Sydney Rd, Brunswick 3056; Every Tuesday at 7.30pm; Contact::  Chris Morris Mobile: 0430 112 555;  Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

4.  St Mary's Church, 160 Foster St, Dandenong 3175; 4th Tuesday of each month at 7.30pm; Contact: Sr Margaret Fields OP Tel BH: 9791 4611  AH 9590 0991

5.  Pallotti College, 80 McNamara Rd, Milgrove;  Every Wednesday Evening at 7.30pm; Contact: Fr Michael Mifsud  Tel: 5966 2049.

If you are from a state other than Victoria, a list of contact names is available on another page on this website.  Click here to Read More>>

If you are interested in joining the Centering Prayer Network and wish to receive the Centering Prayer Electronic Newsletter, send full contact details to:  This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it ' ); /


Thomas Merton Bridges to Contemplative Living:

Centering Meditation is also a feature of the 'Thomas Merton Bridges to Contemplative Living Programme' which meets on the second and fourth Wednesday of the month at 7.30pm.

The Merton Bridges  Programme exists to awaken interest in contemplative living through studying and reflecting upon the writings of Thomas Merton.  The Bridges Group reflects on Merton's writings  in a prayerful manner, similar to lectio divina.

New participants are welcome at any time.  READ MORE>>

To contact someone about the Bridges Programme, send an email message to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


Yoga and Healing Life's Hurts through Meditation on Jesus

These one-hour sessions, to be led by Fr Gilbert Carlo SVD, focus on gentle yogic postures, breathing exercises, relaxation and meditation.  (Donation Welcome)  Read More>>



In the spirit of reconciliation, the Society of the Divine Word, Australia Province, acknowledges the Traditional Custodians of country throughout Australia and their connections to land, sea, sky, and community.

We acknowledge their skin-groups, story-lines, traditions, religiosity and living cultures.

We pay respect to their elders, past, present, and emerging, and extend that respect to all indigenous peoples of New Zealand, Thailand, and Myanmar.

We are committed to building with them, a brighter future together.

The Arnold Janssen Spirituality Centre for Inter-religious and Cross-cultural Relations, commonly known as KARUNA, is an initiative of the Society of the Divine Word (SVD) Australia Province

22 Woodvale Road, Boronia VIC 3155
Phone: (03) 9762 6625 | Email:  Contact Us

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