Center for Contemplative Justice

Mission Statement

The mission of the Center for Contemplative Justice, Inc. is to foster acts of corporate justice arising from contemplation. The mission furthermore is to support individuals in their contemplative life to the end that they form visions of personal well-being, which lead to visions for social and structural well-being.


The CCJ is not affiliated with any religious organization or institution, believing that a commitment to transformation through contemplation, leading to acts of justice, binds together many of the world’s religious traditions. We are an independent non-profit corporation with a broad charter to operate for charitable and educational purposes.What does this mean in practical terms?

Several years ago, Becca Stevens and Dick Lodge wrote a white paper (Waiting at the Gates) describing an organization that could serve as a springboard for people launching their own ministries in Nashville and the greater world.  A central idea was the creation of a board comprised of representatives from many of the world's religions, to enhance interreligious dialogue and to draw upon the wisdom and contacts of leaders in Nashville.  The Center for Contemplative Justice was formed and granted 501(c)3 status in 2004. The concept was to create a 501(c)3 entity that may serve as an umbrella organization for people holding a vision so that they may birth their idea, nurture and grow it, eventually seeking independent 501(c)3 status as the situation warrants it.  The CCJ Board does not provide financial backing or staff for people proposing new programs, as this is a group of volunteers.The first entity created under the CCJ umbrella was CCJ-Ecuador, the organization that manages Escuela Anne Stevens and the yearly pilgrimage to San Eduardo, Ecuador in March.  A second entity, CCJ-Botswana, was formed to manage the relationship with the Holy Cross Hospice in Gaborone, Botswana.  A CCJ Board member, Gordon Peerman, heard about a Texas ministry-Mobile Loaves & Fishes- through an NPR story.  After meeting with the leaders of MLF, Gordon submitted a proposal to launch Mobile Loaves & Fishes in Nashville under the non-profit umbrella of CCJ.  Within a few years, the Nashville organization had grown substantially and was ready to leave CCJ, becoming an independent 501(c)3 organization itself.Finally, the CCJ sponsors speakers, programs, retreats and other educational forums, including a contemplative Eucharist service held the second and fourth Sundays of each month at the A-frame chapel, led by Rev. Scott Owings and Rev. Gordon Peerman.For more information about CCJ or to learn more about submitting a proposal to the Board, contact Scott Owings / 

CCJ-Ecuador: Escuela Anne Stevens


For 20 years we have been engaged in a wonderfully symbiotic relationship with the community of San Eduardo, Ecuador. St. Augustine’s took our first Alternative Spring Break trip to Ecuador in 1998 and opened a school named Escuela Anne Stevens in the town of San Eduardo in 1999. Since then, we have financed the operations of the school through donations and sponsorships, we have made an annual pilgrimage with approximately 32 people every spring to help with capital improvement projects, and we established an annual medical clinic for those in San Eduardo and the surrounding communities. In 2013, we founded Sibimbe, a women's sewing cooperative whose hand-sewn pouches are purchased by Thistle Farms.  A new building to house the cooperative and to provide new learning spaces for the school was completed in early March 2014 before this year's team from St. Augustine's arrived. 


Ecuador Wish List 2018 - Toothbrushes, Reading Glasses, etc.

Each year, we have relied on donations to supply some of our needs on the pilgrimage to Ecuador, and we have reached that stage of our preparation for the journey on March 3, 2018. We are accepting donations of: toothbrushes, reading glasses (especially 2.25, 3.00, and 3.5), safety glasses and sunglasses (adult and children’s).

For the wellness clinic, we need infant & toddler supplies: sippy cups, bulb aspirators, toddler spoons and forks, bottles, bottle brush cleaners, baby tooth and gum cleanser, diaper rash cream, saline drops (e.g., Little Noses).

 Questions? Contact Allen Karns at


Sponsor a child at Escuela Anne Stevens 

The school has 72 students this year that are excited to learn and be a part of the community. Resolve to sponsor a child at Escuela Anne Stevens for the 2017-18 school year! Your $35/month donation ($420/year) goes to pay the salary, retirement contribution, and health care benefits for the six full time teachers at Escuela Anne Stevens in San Eduardo, Ecuador. In addition, it helps purchase supplies for the school. If you would like to sponsor one or more children, please send an email to Allen Karns or Don Welch. Checks are payable to "CCJ-Ecuador" with "sponsorship" written in the For: line. 



Sibimbe is a sewing cooperative in San Eduardo, Ecuador. This social enterprise partners with Escuela Anne Stevens, where it is housed. Sibimbe launched its business by creating healing oil pouches for Thistle Farms. They have expanded their work to produce a variety of items for Shared Trade, liturgical items for Cokesbury and have just recently begun making pet collars and leashes for the non-profit PEHT.The Reverend Gina Angulo, priest at the church in San Eduardo and spokesperson for Sibimbe, says, "The purpose of this cooperative is to provide decent work and to improve the quality of life for women.  It is our hope that in the future there will be many more women that can be a part of Sibimbe."  Pictured from left to right are Rev. Angulo, along with Sibimbe's three seamstresses, Rosario, Blanca, and Marilu.For more information, visit their facebook page - Sibimbe San Eduardo - or email Kim Bailey or Mary Murphy.


Holy Cross HospiceFor over 10 years, the Center for Contemplative Justice has supported the work of Holy Cross Hospice in Gaborone, Botswana as they provide physical, emotional, and spiritual care for those suffering with HIV-AIDS and other terminal illnesses. Holy Cross Hospice has also been a leader in promoting palliative care in the country through their training programs, and the inception of the first in-patient facility in the country. In addition to financial support which comes