“In solitude and silence people become aware of what is actually occurring in their hearts—without incessant external stimuli, they discover who they are.”
+ L. Paul Jensen (PhD ’07), an adjunct professor and founding president of The Leadership Institute, in his book Subversive Spirituality: Transforming Mission through the Collapse of Space and Time. Pictured above: Roger Feldman’s Tenacious Convergence, a temporary site-specific sculpture on Fuller’s Pasadena campus that expresses the unstable context of the first-century church. Inside, angled walls intentionally disorient the viewer and reveal open spaces just out of reach—evoking a struggle to find prayerful silence in the midst of chaotic times.
“What does solitude and silence look like in my context? There’s not a lot of silence. I have to think about a spirituality of noise and how I incorporate these noises into my life with God. . . . The problem with a lot of us is that we spend so much time learning about all the things that are happening in the world—we spend a lot more time there than in the Bible. So what does it mean to listen to God not just at Saint Andrew’s Monastery, but also in MacArthur Park or walking down Alvarado Street?”
+ Jude Tiersma Watson, associate professor of urban mission, describing her calling to be an “urban contemplative” cultivating silence in the city of Los Angeles. Watch the interview above. Pictured, students walk through Austin, Texas, at the Brehm Center’s South by Southwest Festival immersion course; the street mural above them evokes a struggle to navigate a chaotic modern life.
+ Berenice Rarig, an installation and performance artist pictured in Fuller’s Prayer Garden, uses simple materials like fabric and paper to guide others to prayerful silence—a silence where we become aware of “the language that is already in the material, pointing to the Father.” Watch her interview above and explore more on silence from the Brehm Center’s Culture Care Summit.
“Silence precedes speech; only one who has learned to be silent is prepared to speak.”
+ David Augsburger, senior professor of pastoral care and counseling, from his Baccalaureate address on the pastoral aspects of silence, patience, and presence.
“Everything that had taken place until now had been necessary to bring him to this love. ‘Even now I am the last priest in this land. But Our Lord was not silent. Even if he had been silent, my life until this day would have spoken of him.’”
+ Toward the end of Shusaku Endo’s novel Silence, Father Rodrigues has an epiphany: faith was still possible in the midst of the suffering he had witnessed; paradoxically, God’s own silence expanded his heart, making it possible to love in a new way. Pictured: Martin Scorsese pausing at Christopher Slatoff’s sculpture of the crucifixion on Fuller’s Pasadena campus—a silent moment to remember where love and suffering meet. A screening of his adaptation of Endo’s novel, sponsored by the Brehm Center’s Reel Spirituality initiative, created space to reflect on faith, suffering, and more. Watch more here.
+ “Death and Resurrection” from the Liturgical Meditations series portrays the night before and the morning of the resurrection of Jesus, marking the beginning of Eastertide. Filmed at Paymaster Landing in Imperial County, California, the bright star-filled sky evokes a contemplative silence.
Rest: Experiencing God’s Peace in a Restless World
Siang-Yang Tan (Regent College Publishing, 2003)
Silence and Beauty: Hidden Faith Born of Suffering
Makoto Fujimura (InterVarsity Press, 2016)
Meditative Prayer: Entering God’s Presence
Richard Peace (Wipf & Stock, 2015)
Spiritual Traditions and Practices with Richard Peace (and other faculty)
The Spiritual Disciplines with Richard Peace
Theology, Film, and Culture: Engaging Independent Films with Kutter Callaway
Spirituality and Mission with Jude Tiersma Watson