Wil Hernandez, Ph.D.
Founder, President, and Executive Director – CenterQuest
There lies a seeker deep within each one of us! God is the one who built such a perpetual longing inside us all. This God-given resident thirst, as we may already realize, can only be quenched by no less than the One who implanted that desire in our hearts. No other person has so eloquently expressed this truth than the great Augustine, who famously wrote in his magnum opus Confessions this oft-quoted declaration: “Thou hast made us for Thyself, O God, and our hearts are restless until they find their rest in Thee.”
Suffice it to say, we’re all on a quest. Either we’re moving closer to or further away from our spiritual center. I speak here of a symbolic center, metaphorically employed by many, including the mystics of old in a variety of different ways. For a Christian, the center point is decidedly God in Christ, first and foremost. But it can also well refer to the center of our souls, our God-imaged selves where God dwells and where we dwell with God. Our spiritual life gravitates around this pursuit of the center—constantly finding, discovering, and returning to this center, where we then claim it, identify with it, stick with it, live in it, draw from it, and minister out of it.
It is out of this broadly held conviction that CenterQuest was birthed. Inspired by Henri Nouwen’s fascination with the symbol of the wagon wheel—with its wide rim, strong wooden spokes, and big hub—we at CenterQuest embrace Nouwen’s firm belief in the paramount importance of our spiritual lives being lived out from the center. Nouwen remarked: “When I move along the rim, I can reach one spoke after the other, but when I stay at the hub, I am in touch with all the spokes at once” (Here and Now, 25). Employing his own analogy, Nouwen “likens the hub to his own heart, to the heart of God, and to the heart of the world and reiterates that only by remaining in his own center can he feel communion with the world and find the energy to move out of the center to help others,” for he was deeply convinced that “it is from the center that we find our energy and the courage to move out to touch the spokes and find our common humanity” (Turning the Wheel: Henri Nouwen and Our Search for God, 231).
As an organization, CenterQuest exists as a hub—an ecumenical center where Christians of all persuasions engage in an ongoing exploratory study and practice of Christian spirituality. I encourage you to read more about us on this website to acquaint yourself further with who we are—our mission and vision and how we intend to carry out our God-given mandate in collaboration with our various affiliate partners.
Welcome to our newly launched site! We invite you to freely roam around and familiarize yourself with our services and offerings that seek to advance the work of spiritual formation within the ecumenical field of Christian spirituality. Join the hub, and together let’s endeavor to unite in our common center, which is God.