The Way of Compassion: A Five Day Intensive

Sunday, May 3 to Friday, May 8, 2020 | Twin Cities

Image created for CPI by Joel Hedstrom.

This intensive from the Center for Prophetic Imagination explores suffering and oppression through Jesus’ model of compassionate ministry. Taking the best insights of liberation theology, mindfulness practice, and those traditions that understood that “compassion” means to “suffer with,” we will explore the posture of a Christ-centered solidarity today.

Together, we will learn what it means to be present to our own pain, the suffering of our neighbors, the suffering of Creation, and the suffering of God.

We will explore questions like: In what ways have each of us internalized dehumanizing myths? How can we begin to break through our conditioning to see the full humanity of others? What does our treatment of creation reveal about our deepest social values?

Participants should plan to arrive in Minneapolis before noon on Sunday, May 3 and depart after 6pm on Friday May 8.

This course is a part of the 2 Year Program in Prophetic Spirituality, but can be taken as an individual course. 

Suggested Readings:

  • Hope in an Age of Despair by Albert Nolan
  • Suffering by Dorothee Sölle
  • Coming Back to Life by Joanna Macy and Molly Young Brown

Intensive Facilitators

Mark Van Steenwyk is the executive director of the Center for Prophetic Imagination. Mark is the author of unKingdom: Repenting of Christianity in America, That Holy Anarchist, and A Wolf at the Gate. Trained as a pastor and spiritual director, he explores the intersections between deep spirituality and radical politics. For over 15 years, Mark has engaged with communities around the continent as a teacher, organizer and spiritual provocateur.

Patricia Enstad is a licensed social worker, spiritual director and teacher. She is an elected member of the Payne-Phalen Community Council on St. Paul’s Eastside and she volunteer facilitates a weekly Mindful Self-Compassion drop in practice group at the East Side Freedom Library (The ESFL’s mission is to inspire solidarity, advocate for justice and work toward equity for all). She is also an active St. Paul member of MN350 working for climate justice and energy democracy.


Since this is the pilot run of this program, we have endeavored to make each intensive as affordable as possible. Additionally, tuition for our program is based upon a sliding scale. Tuition includes the cost of food and lodging during the intensive. You must arrange travel to and from Minneapolis on your own.

We don’t want to turn any applicant away because of inability to pay. We will work with participants to explore alternate sources of funding, such as fundraising, congregational support, or grants.

Once you have submitted your application, and been accepted, we will contact you to arrange payment. Prices are listed in US dollars. 

Cost for Members: 
income under $25k/year: $600 
income up to $40k/year: $700
income up to $65k/year: $800 
income over $65k/year: $900 

Cost for Non-Members:
income under $25k/year: $660
income up to $40k/year: $770
income up to $65k/year: $880
income over $65k/year: $990