Carl McColman is a contemplative writer, speaker, teacher, soul friend, and storyteller, and now, ZG's Contemplative in Residence.
In this role, Carl serves as a guiding presence, consultant, teacher, workshop and retreat leader, and Spiritual Director. Each year, our students have exclusive access to his teaching for the Spiritual Direction Training Program.
We also offer an annual public workshop where you can enjoy Carl's wisdom on a variety of perennial topics in the area of contemplation, mysticism, and more. This Fall, Carl will be teaching in-depth on Christian Mysticism as part of our four-part series.
More About Carl...
He is the author of numerous books, including The Big Book of Christian Mysticism, Answering the Contemplative Call, An Invitation to Celtic Wisdom and Unteachable Lessons. His latest book, Eternal Heart is out now.
Several of Carl’s books have won awards or recognition, notably Befriending Silence which won the 2015 “Georgia Author of the Year” award in the field of inspirational/religious writing. His work has been warmly endorsed by many leading voices in the field of Christian spirituality, such as Richard Rohr, Mirabai Star, Daniel Ladinsky, Dave Dault, Christine Valters Paintner, Zenju Earthlyn Manuel, Adam Bucko, Br. Paul Quenon, Judith Valente, and others.
Carl studied at James Madison University (BA, English) and George Mason University (MA, Professional Writing and Editing). His formation in the spiritual life includes training with the Shalem Institute in Washington, DC; the Institute for Pastoral Studies in Atlanta; and the Monastery of the Holy Spirit in Conyers, GA; where Carl is a Life-Professed Lay Cistercian: a layperson under formal spiritual guidance with the Trappist monks.
After a career as a humble bookseller, he entered into full-time lay ministry as a retreat director, writer and speaker. Since 2016 he and his wife have served as adult catechists, co-directing the RCIA (Rite of Christian Initiation) process at their parish. He is a commissioned Centering Prayer presenter with Contemplative Outreach of North Georgia, and a spiritual director serving individuals both in metro Atlanta and online.
Carl’s writing appears on numerous websites, including Patheos, the Huffington Post, Day One, Contemplative Life, and Medium. He regularly posts new content to his personal blog at www.anamchara.com/blog on topics such as Christian mysticism, contemplative practice, Celtic spirituality, and interspirituality (interreligious dialogue).
Carl co-hosts the Encountering Silence podcast with filmmaker Cassidy Hall and theologian Kevin Johnson. He also creates video and audio content for his website.
Carl and his wife, artist Fran McColman, live near Atlanta in a small house filled with cats, books, icons and love. Their daughter, Rhiannon, passed away after a long illness at age 29 in 2014. When they take a break from the work they so enjoy, you may find Carl and Fran wandering around the mountains of western North Carolina or taking long walks along the Emerald Coast of Florida.
“If you don’t know about Carl McColman and his work, you should.” ~ bestselling author Brian D. McLaren
Carl's busy with...
Online Day of Reflection for Patrons: Transfiguration (August 7, 2021)
An online Quiet Day/Day of Reflection for the generous patrons who support Carls' work through Patreon. Read more...
SDI Presents: Christian Mystics and Spiritual Companionship - Wisdom Teaching for Those Who Hold Space
This four-part SDI webinar explores the companioning relationships between various Christian mystics and how their wisdom and insights can shape the work of spiritual directors and spiritual companions today.
Thursdays September 9, 16, 23, 30, 2021
Online Course: Wisdom of the Desert (September 27-October 22 2021)
Four-week online course, sponsored by Columbia Theological Seminary’s Center for Lifelong Learning. Read more...
Carl co-hosts "Encountering Silence", a podcast that explores the beauty and importance of silence from many angles, not just the religious/spiritual/mystical, but also reflecting on the psychology of silence, silence and the arts, silence and politics, silence and education… the list goes on. For a topic that we often don’t devote a lot of time and energy to, silence certainly has an important (if quiet!) role in all our lives. Learn more...
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