April 5, 2019 @ 6:00 pm – April 7, 2019 @ 2:00 pm
Wellspring Conference Center
11411 Neelsville Church Road
Germantown, MD

Nourishing Inner Wisdom, Joy, and Beloved Community in a Polarized World
at Wellspring Conference Center in Germantown, MD
Presented by Opening Heart Mindfulness Community of Washington, D.C.
*Scholarships available.
April 5-7, 2019

In a safe and joyful environment, this weekend retreat offers mindfulness practices in the Plum Village tradition, including rest, reflection, and renewal. Participants will explore ways to cultivate inner wisdom and joy for greater healing and transformation, individually and collectively. During these times of intense divisiveness, there is also intense change.  How do we hold this with understanding and love?

The retreat includes mindfulness practices: mindful breathing, mindful sitting, mindful walking, mindful eating (with some of the meal eaten in silence) mindful speaking and listening, ceremonies and rituals of healing, mindful movement, deep relaxation, quietude, small and large group reflection and dialogue.

Our Venue: 

Nestled in two-acres of natural woods just north of Washington, D.C. and close to Baltimore, Maryland, Wellspring Conference Center offers a rustic, simple, and sustainable natural environment, with delicious home-cooked meals.

Register now. Space is limited. Scholarships available.

Retreats & Facilitation Services

Coaching & Consulting Services

Conflict Resolution & Mediation Services

Named one of the best courageous books of 2014 by the Center for Courage & Renewal, this book is for educational leaders who feel overwhelmed, stressed, and exhausted, and offers explicit practices to help readers avoid burnout and become the mindful, poised, effective leaders they were meant to be. Loaded with real-time encouragement with portraits of educational leaders who are incorporating mindfulness practices, like attentive breathing, mindful walking about the school building, or calming pauses in the office throughout the school day, this book is a must-have guide.

Valerie Brown and Kirsten Olson. Corwin, December 2014. 344 pages.

The Road that Teaches: Lessons in Transformation through Travel.

Not your average travel guidebook, this book explores some of the world’s great pilgrimages, destinations, and the author’s reflections on the lessons she learned from them. Read this book to discover how travel can be transformational, how to be more mindful while traveling and every day, the adventures of traveling alone, the delights of encountering new people and places, ancient pilgrimage journeys and sacred travel worldwide.

Valerie Brown. QuakerBridge Media, 2012, 152 pages. Also available from QuakerBooks.

Heartfulness: Renewing Heart, Mind, and Spirit on Retreat and Beyond Valerie

Valerie Brown guides readers toward renewal of mind, heart, and spirit by encouraging them to take time away from the busyness of their lives through retreat. Drawing on her experience as a retreatant and retreat leader, she introduces readers to opportunities for personal restoration within a variety of focused retreats. She wonders how Friends experience of expectant waiting influences the retreat process and how retreats influence expectant waiting. She encourages the “big questions”—What has meaning and purpose in my life? What am I avoiding? What brings me most alive?—and offers specific practices for retreatants to cultivate in everyday life.

Valerie Brown. Pendle Hill Pamphlet #421.

Quakers are advised to begin worship by “centering down.” This is the first step in a Friend’s intention to wait in “holy expectancy,” to be drawn by the Light into communion with God. Centering prayer is also a practice used by Christian mystics to prepare for contemplation, and “centering” describes the meditation of a Buddhist in pursuit of that deep awareness called “mindfulness.” Valerie Brown is an explorer and teacher of centering practices, a Buddhist, and an active Friend. Drawing upon her own experiences and wide studies, she describes for Friends how these various traditions can offer us a better understanding and preparedness for our precious, elusive, mysterious, and simple practice of centering into worship. Discussion questions included.

Valerie Brown, Pendle Hill Pamphlet #407. 2014.