Tag Archives: retreat

Be Still & Know Retreat

Saturday, February 29, 2020
Chicot State Park
9:00 am – 6:00 pm

A Lenten introduction to Contemplative Christian Spirituality for Seekers, Doubters, Rebels, and Ragamuffins. Together we will spend a day of prayer and silence exploring classic Christian practices such as: Celtic Daily Prayer, Centering Prayer, Prayer Walking, Chanting, Lectio Divina, and other disciplines. This is an ecumenical gathering of friends where all are welcome as they are, no one is excluded for any reason. This will be a silent retreat with dedicated times for discussion and sharing.

We will practice at the Chicot State Park Meeting Room on the secluded east side of Bayou Chicot Lake with meal provided and opportunities for afternoon hiking and evening campfire to close out the day. You are welcome to leave earlier in the day if needed.

Must register in advance through Eventbrite as space is limited. $40 registration includes meal. No additional registration fees. Cancellations allowed up to 7 days prior to the event.

Register Here

Morning Meditation Retreat

Join us this Saturday, April 8, from 9-10am for a morning retreat of sitting and walking meditation at the Butterfly Garden behind the Catahoula Ranger Station on Hwy 8 in Bentley. Free to attend. Bring a yoga mat, picnic blanket, or any support you need for sitting meditation outside on the grass. 

Directions: From Pineville Expressway head north on US 167 toward Dry Prong/Ruston. In Bentley turn right on Hwy 8. About 1.5 miles turn right at the Catahoula Ranger District Office. The Butterfly Garden will be on your right. There is a grassy parking area.

Afternoon Retreat at Toledo Bend

You are invited to experience an afternoon of our longer 4 day retreat this Saturday, January 14, at South Toledo Bend State Park from 1-5pm. Plan to arrive by 1pm and bring your own meditation cushion. There is no fee, but a suggested donation of $10 is appreciated. We do ask that you message us on Facebook or send an email to info@cenlameditation.org to let us know you plan to come out. 

South Toledo Bend State Park
120 Bald Eagle, Anacoco, LA 71403
Retreat meeting at Cabin #8.

Winter Retreat 2017

January 12-15, 2017

South Toledo Bend State Park

Anacoco, Louisiana

Registration is live for our 4th Annual Meditation Retreat on beautiful South Toledo Bend State Park in Anacoco, La. This will be our first 3 day retreat almost one month from now. 

This retreat will include meditations in sitting, walking, chanting, tea, journaling, and nature.

This meditation retreat is limited to those who meet at least two of the three criteria:

1) Prior retreat experience, preferably with Cenla Meditation or similar Sangha.

2) Regular personal meditation practice.

3) Active participant in meditation group

Meal assignments are required in addition to the cost of registration. Due to the limited space available and short notice all registrations will be non-refundable.

Registration is limited to a small number of participants. Please register soon to reserve a spot. Message with any questions.

Register at Eventbrite.com.

Open Your Heart Retreat Info

2015-12-29 16.33.40Directions: 

From I-49, turn south on Hwy 106 toward St. Landry. Just past St. Landry you will see a CLECO power station on your left. Turn left on the next road on the left which is Spillway Rd. and the entrance to the boat landing and Conference/Meeting Room facility. It is about 1.5 miles down a gravel road. The facility is at the very end of the road. Please note it is on the north side of the lake. It is not in the main campground/arboretum area on the south side of the lake. If you have trouble finding the facility, call Lyndon at (318)229-3811.

What to Bring: 

  • A Yoga Mat and any props that you like to use
  • Please wear comfortable, loose clothes and dress in layers, depending on the weather. We will try to keep a pleasantly warm room.
  • We should have enough meditation cushions for everyone registered, but if you like to sit with any particular style of cushion or chair, please bring them. There are only hard chairs in the facility for alternatives.
  • Journal or notebook and pen or pencil for a journaling practice
  • Hot water, tea, and water provided. If we all brought a mug, that would cut down on paper waste.
  • Finally, a vegetarian lunch will be provided. Some have offered to bring a dish to share. You are welcome to bring something to share also, but it is not required. Please email us at info@cenlameditation.org if you plan to bring food.

If you know of someone interested in attending that is not already registered, there are only a few spaces remaining. Email us at info@cenlameditation.org to let us know they want to come. they can pay via PayPal or bring money the day of the retreat.

It’s going to be a great day! We are excited that you are coming and hope that is a wonderful experience for everyone. See you soon!

Open Your Heart Retreat


Photo Dec 10, 10 07 26 PM

Open Your Heart
Yoga & Meditation
One-Day Retreat

Bayou Chicot State Park
Ville Platte, Louisiana

Valentine’s Weekend
Saturday, February 13, 2016
9:00 am to 6:00 pm

Kundalini Yoga with Bill Savage
Qi Gong with Paul Nettles
Meditation with Lyndon Marcotte
Yoga Tao with B. Hedrick

You can send the $40 registration via PayPal to info@cenlameditation.org, or download the Printable Registration Form and mail it in with payment. Space is limited. If you are interested in providing a vegetarian dish to share for lunch, please email us for availability.

3 Gifts You Can Give Yourself and Others

By Lyndon Marcotte 

I’m really looking forward to our local meditation group’s weekend retreat, and I’m also a little apprehensive about it too. Life has been clipping along at a furious pace these past few weeks. There have been lots of heartache, some new challenges, as well as great opportunities. I could personally use the retreat to slow down and allow time and space to process what’s been going on and prepare for what’s coming, but I’m afraid that the retreat will either be a jarring abrupt stop or just something else to get through and on to the next thing. I’m reminded that a retreat as well as  a regular meditation practice offers us three gifts that have the potential to restore balance and sanity to our lives.


The idea of “getting away” can seem like running away from your life. We’ve all had plenty of practice at avoiding pain and discomfort. What makes spending a weekend away or 15 minutes every morning meditating any different? When we practice meditation we are not escaping to our happy place where we are cut off from difficult people and emotions. Anyone who has tried meditation even once will tell you that they will find us there also.

The busyness of our life buys into our idea of who we think we are and the roles we play. The easiest place to avoid your life is actually right in the middle of all the hectic day to day drama we get caught up in. Our to do lists can sweep us away in a mindless current of activity that takes us further and further away from sanity.

By purposely carving out a few minutes a day or even a weekend once in a while to unplug from the madness gives us an opportunity to see clearly and reconnect with our lives on a very basic level. It may seem selfish to make time for yourself because we believe we are so very important and the world will fall apart without our efforts. It can be a disappointment to the ego to realize that life goes on with or without consent just fine. Are we really showing up for our loved ones if the self we offer them is frayed, exhausted, and empty? The truth is that taking the time to “get away” actually enables us to show up more fully for the people we care for and the rest of our lives as well.


There are so few places and moments in our day that are truly quiet. From the moment we wake up to the moment we lay down at night we fill the time with noise. Facebook, television, music, meetings, and idle conversation are all on standby to keep us comfortable at a moment’s notice, helping us to avoid silence at all cost. What is it about crickets and pins dropping that makes us so uncomfortable?

I think silence forces us to hear the thoughts that we’ve been trying to drown and feel the emotions that we try so desperately to delay. When immersed in silence we come face to face with ourselves and a sense of nowness that we aren’t entirely sure what to do with. It always easier to default to the past or grasp at the future than to stand on the razor’s edge of now.

The irony of course is that the silence we find so deafening is exactly what we need to truly listen. We will never resolve our neuroses by layering them under noise. Silence helps us to rediscover basic awareness, an undercurrent of sanity available to us in every moment. It’s only by entering the cavernous depths of silence that we can tune out the noise and tune in to the truth of who we are. That’s a truth that we can carry back with us into our daily lives to keep us grounded and whole.


When we get alone and get quiet, there’s no place to hide from yourself. Living a contemplative life of meditation or prayer is not all fairies and rainbows. It can be dark at times and difficult. There’s no getting around it. We can only go through it, but on the other side of a racing mind and raging heart there is space. Lots and lots of space. Plenty of room to walk around in, to explore, to work things out, to let things be. More space than you know what to do with. So much space that it makes you feel so very small, but so much space that it makes you feel so very free.

We discover in seclusion and silence untapped reserves of creativity, possibility, and potential. While it can be overwhelming, it can also be invigorating and inspiring. We learn that we’re not so trapped as it seemed. We don’t have to be a prisoner of our thoughts and every fleeting emotion. We don’t have to live on autopilot numb to the the world. We can risk getting up close with it all and not be overtaken by it. We can show up fully for our lives every day letting it all unfold around us, within us, and through us.

It doesn’t take a weekend away to find these gifts in your life. Even a few minutes a day to let yourself sit down, to rest, and to be can be a gift you give yourself and ultimately to others also.