John Main Christian Meditation - WCCM

By means of the mantra we leave behind all passing images

and learn to rest in the infinity of God himself.

- John Main O.S.B.

Christian Meditation as Prayer

The basis of the Prayer is the indwelling of the Holy Spirit. Deep within all of us dwells the Blessed Trinity. At the depth of our being the Father continually loves the Son while the Son responds to the Father in love and prayer through the Holy Spirit. In our Prayer of Meditation we desire to be part of the love and prayer of Jesus to the Father.  Rather than think up words or aspirations or images of our own, we wish to unite ourselves with the loving prayer going on continuously within us. In this prayer we also seek to open ourselves completely to the Holy Spirit that He may bring about in us conversion, repentance and faith in the Good News of Jesus Christ.

Christian Meditation is a prayer of Stillness.  The body and mind are completely silent and still.
"Be still and know that I am God." - Psalm 46:10

In the stillness we bow in faith before the majesty of God who can reveal His unlimited love for us.
Meditation is a simple direct method of making us present to God in love.

Christian Meditation is a Prayer of Faith. It is more important to experience its power in our lives than to try to understand or explain it.  It is unlike other forms of meditation with which you may be familiar.  Here there are no words, no thoughts, no concepts, no images.  We pray with Jesus dwelling within us.  It is no longer 'our' prayer for "we do not know how to pray." - Romans 8

There are currently over 2000 World Community for Christian Meditation (WCCM) groups
in over 115 countries following John Main's teaching on Christian Meditation.

Patrons of the WCCM (as of 2019)

Individuals in the Community or society at large who support and endorse the mission of the WCCM:
1.  His Eminence Cardinal Walter Kasper, Germany
2.  His Eminence Cardinal Vincent Nichols, Westminster
3.  His Eminence Cardinal John Tong Hon, Hong Kong
4.  His Eminence Cardinal Sean Brady, N. Ireland
5.  The Most Rev. Paul Gallagher, Vatican
6.  The Most Rev. Christopher Prowse, Canberra
7.  Archbishop Jason Gordon of Port of Spain Trinidad
8.  RR. Dom Diego M. Rosa OSB, Congregation of Monte Oliveto
9.  Abbot Michelangelo Tiribili, Italy
10. Bishop Kallistos Ware, Oxford
11. The Rt. Rev. & Rt. Hon. Dr. Rowan Williams, Cambridge University
12. Professor Robert Kiely, Harvard University
13. Mary McAleese, Ireland
14. Dr. Balfour Mount, McGill University
15. His Holiness the Dalai Lama, Dharamsala
16. Paul Harris, Canada
17. Mother Mangalam, Malaysia
18. Margaret Rizza, Musician
19. Professor Bernard McGinn, Naomi Shenstone Donnelley, Professor Emeritus, Chicago University
20. Professor John Drew, Chancellor Emeritus, Regent’s University London

Lord Rowan Williams, 104th Archbishop of Canterbury, on WCCM

"In practice, ... wherever initiatives are being taken to reach out in new ways to a lapsed Christian or post-Christian public, there should be serious work done on how such outreach can be grounded in some ecumenically shared contemplative practice. In addition to the striking way in which Taizé has developed an international liturgical 'culture' accessible to a great variety of people, a network like the World Community for Christian Meditation, with its strong Benedictine roots and affiliations, has opened up fresh possibilities here. What is more, this community has worked hard at making contemplative practice accessible to children and young people, and this needs the strongest possible encouragement. Having seen at first hand - in Anglican schools in Britain - how warmly young children can respond to the invitation offered by meditation in this tradition, I believe its potential for introducing young people to the depths of our faith to be very great indeed. And for those who have drifted away from the regular practice of sacramental faith, the rhythms and practices of Taizé or the WCCM are often a way back to this sacramental heart and hearth."

How to Meditate

Christian Meditation is a mantra-based practice. Your mantra is a silent act of love and faith. It is an expression of your desire to be united in the loving prayer of Jesus rather than following any thoughts or ideas of your own. It is a way of leaving everything behind, of following Jesus, and of wanting to do only His will. Fr. John Main recommends the Aramaic word "Maranatha," which in English means "Come, Lord." This Aramaic word is one of the earliest known Christian prayers. Alternatively, you may choose a word or phrase of your own: "Jesus" or "Come, Holy Sprit" or "Be merciful to me, a sinner." Whichever word or phrase you use, keep to it always. Do not replace it to suit a changing mood.

  1. Prepare by taking some deep breaths, doing basic stretches, and/or listening to gentle music. This will help focus your attention.

  2. Sit down with your feet firmly on the ground, your hands resting on your knees, your back as straight as possible.

  3. Close your eyes gently. Begin to say your mantra in your heart and in your mind. You will not say it aloud. Repeat it slowly, reverently, and lovingly for the duration of your mediation. If you have chosen "Maranatha" as your mantra, say it as four distinct syllables: MA-RA-NA-THA. Say it without any thought as to its meaning. Say it in total faith and love, like St. Peter walking on the water.

Meditate every morning and evening for 20 - 30 minutes at a sitting, each and every day of the year. 
Distractions will inevitably come; let them float past you. As soon as you become aware of them, return gently to saying your mantra. In this way you are choosing Jesus above the distraction.


Meet Fr. John Main
Fr. John Main, O.S.B. (1926 - 1982)
Fr. John Main, O.S.B. (1926 - 1982)

Here's a link to a biography of Fr. John, from the WCCM website.

In December of 2014, Ireland's Radio Kerry aired a documentary about Fr. John Main's roots in Ballinskelligs, Co. Kerry.
Click on the link below to listen to the hour-long podcast.
John Main and the Path to Silence

More information about Christian Meditation is available at the following websites:

In November of 2019, Ireland's RTÉ, Radio 1 program Leap of Faith aired an interview with Fr. Tom Ryan about Yoga and Christian Meditation.
Click on the link below to listen to the 10 minute interview.