The Guild for Spiritual Guidance

January 2023 Newsletter

Blessings of the Season to our Guild family…  

My musings are often wrapped in awe this time of year – awe, because this is a deeply celebratory season throughout the world. We know these celebrations by a wide variety of names, but, most of us, in both our joys and sorrows, find ways to celebrate and/or honor this time in one way or another. We revisit memories, make new ones, laugh and cry; feel deep joy and deep sadness. This awareness of connection brings a gentle smile to my heart. So many of our decorations are familiar the world over and connect us without a word. For the ancient Celts boughs of evergreen reminded the people that the green world would not be overcome by dark and cold, and bright red berries were a reminder of the passion for life. The practice of lighting a hearth fire or of holding a single candle speaks across countless barriers of history, tradition, and religion. And so, I celebrate this time of year with much awe, wonder, and gratitude. It may even be fair to say that I feel more deeply connected to earth and humanity at this time of year. I read the stories – new and well worn – of the ages and cultures, mull wine and cider to share, and marvel at the stars. May these winter days wrap you in the gift of wonder…

by Cari Keith

Practicing the Pause

As some of you may be aware from the announcements at the annual meeting earlier this month, the Guild finds itself in a time of organizational transition.  We welcomed LaNell Haydon and Jeanne Blackie to the board and prepared to say a sad farewell to LouAnne Bulik, Cindi Mitchell, and Kate Duncan as they ended their terms of service.  The Guild board also received resignation letters from Katherine Conner who has served faithfully for many years as Guild administrative assistant, and from Steve Allen who has served with love and dedication as treasurer for seven years.  

This is a great deal of transition for a small organization and we are blessed with board members who are volunteering additional hours to help move us through this time. There is also great synchronicity in these transitions occurring during this earthly transition time of year, a time when the call to pause and ponder rises most fully into consciousness.  As we work with new members and support service providers during this transition time, the Guild board will also be pausing for a time of pondering next steps as they align with our vision and mission. It is, in many respects, a gift – even though it is not something we would have planned to engage! Please hold the board in your care and prayers.  

We are encouraged by the presence of Surendra Shah, a banker with 44 years of experience, and his willingness to serve as treasurer. Surendra is spouse to Guild graduate Alice DeNormandi. We are encouraged by the presence of our new board members who are looking at ways of working with our website and newsletter. Please note, there will be no newsletter next month as we pause to learn, but keep your eye out for all the news the month after! We are encouraged by the help provided by administrative assistants present and past to create a job description (see below) that will entice someone looking to serve a great non-profit and to receive a small income. 

We are encouraged by those who have begun to send in their donations in order that we might be able to engage support staff with much needed skills. Your donations make all the difference! The Guild cannot continue to offer programs without your help. Thank you for your financial support in the past and for your on-going trust.  Please give as much as you can and please continue to support the Guild during this time of vision pondering, budget creating and staff hiring.      

May this be a time of pause and rich pondering for all of you.    

By Cari Keith

Regional Guild Member Gathering Opportunities

We have heard from you, our members, that gathering in small Guild groups would be a welcome opportunity to stay connected and to deepen those relationships begun in your AP cohort. One small group of five Guild graduates has been gathering monthly (zoom and in person) for over 10 years!  Each month this group gathers for a time of silence and reading, followed by deep sharing.  As with the AP experience, those who participate know the holding and stretching that can only come with this unique kind of relationship.  If you would like to join or host a local gathering of four to seven Guild graduates please contact Bernice Marie-Daly at    

Help Wanted: Do You Know Good Candidates for the Guild Administrative Assistant Position?

If you know of someone who might like to work with a great non-profit and to make a bit of income as well, please share with them the job description below and contact Cari Keith at: The job is posted for approximately 10 – 12 hours per week; salary to be discussed.  

Job Description:  The Guild for Spiritual Guidance is seeking an experienced administrative assistant (AA) to join our team. The AA will be expected perform a variety of administrative tasks, including managing emails, website content, Network for Good registrations and data base, maintaining membership and donor data bases, maintaining Google docs files. The AA will work closely with the board chair and board liaison to set priorities for the completion of the following tasks:

1.  Respond to Guild email messages in a timely manner and/or forward them to appropriate person.

2.  Maintain Network for Good registration log and data base.

3.  Maintain the data bases of Guild members, donors, and friends found in Mail Chimp, Quick Books, Network for Good, and Google docs, and ensure that a change made in one platform is carried over to other platforms.  

4.  Maintain Google docs file of Guild documents

5.  Receive edited newsletter articles and announcements. Create, distribute, and archive the newsletter.  

6.  Maintain website so that all content is up to date and past programs removed.  Assist program coordinators with back page content management and the uploading of short videos.    

7.  Create address label files and assist with Guild mailings

8.  Maintain, monitor and carefully file all necessary access passwords

9.  The administrative assistant takes direction from, and creates a priority list of needs with the board chair or board AA liaison. 

Upcoming Events

 Heart to Heart Dialogue Opportunity
Monday, January 16, 2023, 7:00 p.m., Via Zoom  

Heart to Heart is the diversity dialogue team of the Guild for Spiritual Guidance.  The group of nine began to meet informally following a graduate retreat, “The Racial Complex,” led by Jungian analyst Fanny Brewster in September of 2021. The vision was to become more aware of the ways in which racism has harmed all of society and to seek ways of intentional healing within and among us. Fanny met with the group eight times during the year and continues to be our guide and consultant.  In July, 2022, the team became a standing committee on the board.   

On January 16, the Heart to Heart team is offering Guild graduates an opportunity to gather and share their thoughts about the impact of racism on self, culture and society. Martin Luther King Jr’s Letter from a Birmingham Jail will guide the discussion through the questions King raises in the letter. You can find the full text of that letter here and the zoom link at the end of this announcement.

We hope that you will mark your calendar for this Guild event which integrates the wisdom of the Guild strands by addressing community relationships, Jungian thought, Teilhard’s interconnection of all, and the wisdom of mystical voices.  We look forward to your presence and sharing on January 16.  Join via Zoom.

Rewilding Our Story with the Evolutionary Dancer
 January 17, via Zoom, 7-9 p.m. ET

Carol Kilby, author of Evolutionary Dancer: Out, In, and on the Fringe of the Church, will present this first Engaged Wisdom course of the new year.

Carol notes that this evolutionary moment calls for the rewilding of our story! The stories of nationhood, religion, and culture have separated us from our larger selves and our relationship to the universe and the earth.

In this time of planetary crisis, it is time for an exodus, time for a new story. Inspired by Sadie Allen Moon’s observation that Jung saw the source of every society’s renewal in individuals whenever they navigate beyond the walls of their culture and bring back to it some novel insight for the collective’s development, the course will investigate how evolutionary rituals, personal practices, and rites of passages can ground our story in the ways of cosmos and nature empowering us to consciously and positively step into the earth’s dance of transformation. 

In addition, participants will discover evolutionary rituals that draw on climate science, new cosmology, ecology, and an evolutionary spirituality that re-member our wild and wonder-full selves. Through rewilding our stories, rituals, and selves in the dance of becoming, individuals who contribute to the evolution of the collective.

The course is open to all, both Guild members and non-members. The fee is $30.
Register here.

Join the Author for a Book Discussion
on Race and the Cosmos, January 22

We are excited that author and theologian Barbara Holmes will join us for this discussion! All Guild graduates are invited to have a conversation with theologian Barbara A. Holmes about her book, Race and the Cosmos: An Invitation to View the World Differently, on Sunday, January 22, 2023, at 6 p.m. EST. Her fascinating book explores the question of what it means to be human through the intersecting lenses of the cosmos, indigenous wisdom, unfolding scientific learning, and divine love. It offers ideas that help dismantle old racial constructs and give hope for new ways of embracing anti-racism in our cultural context.  

There is no cost to participate but please register here in order to indicate your interest and receive the zoom link for the January 22 discussion.

Explore the Natural Cycles of the Earth Community with “Rewilding with Creation: Living the Rhythms of the Seasons” to Begin January 21, 2023

Guild members and friends, come delve into the natural cycles of the earth and our embedded experiences of them in a new year-long Engaged Wisdom program, Rewilding with Creation, starting January 21, 2023.

Rewilding with Creation ask participants to consider the following questions:

  • How do we participate in the natural cycles of the earth community?

  • How do we develop and support our capacities to co-create with the earth?

  • Is there one consciousness embedded in creation?

  • How do we relate to the synergy of the deep cycles of the earth?

  • How do we receive and celebrate that relatedness? 

If these questions resonate with you, consider registering for this in-depth, 12-month course. You will explore your local bioregion, journal about your experiences with nature, and employ contemplative practices. 

“Rewilding with Creation” covers four modules of three months each: Season of Dormancy to Quickening from January through March; Season of Life Bursting Forth from April through June; Season of Harvest from July through September; and Season of Preparation for the Dark from October through December.

Guild member, environmental educator, and longtime staff member with the Vermont Wilderness School Amy Hyatt will lead the program.

Learn More

Join Us on a Pilgrimage to Assisi: May 2023

Buon Natale! Christmas greetings from Assisi. Throughout this medieval town there are delightful reminders, sacred and commercial, of the holiday. Open-air markets, seasonal concerts and of course “presepe” – Christmas cribs - which are a traditional and highly-anticipated feature. The one pictured here stands outside the historical home and shop of Pietro Bernardone, successful cloth merchant of the late 1100’s and early 1200’s, and father to St. Francis. A sharp eye will note that the infant is not yet in the manger – he will be placed there at midnight on Christmas eve.

Join us here in May 2023 for “In the Footsteps of Francis and Clare”, the Guild’s Pilgrimage to Assisi. This is a beautiful opportunity to call forth what is deepest within you as you experience the marvels of Assisi and beyond. You can join Pilgrimage A and encounter Francis and Clare through their life experiences and writings as you visit major sacred sites within Assisi. You can choose Pilgrimage B, and journey beyond Assisi to 4 cities with Franciscan heritage - Perugia, Gubbio, Greccio, and La Verna. Or join us for Pilgrimage C, which combines both A and B. You will enjoy a glorious two-week immersion experience in Assisi and beyond! 

Register today! Some single and double rooms are still available. ALL are welcome! To register and for more details, click on the button below. 

To contact your pilgrimage facilitators, you can email Paul Kimmerling and Br. Mark D’Alessio at

Register Now

Join the Virtual Coffee Cafe Tuesdays at 10 a.m. 

Guild graduates, if you love the idea of connecting with friends from your Apprenticeship Program and other Guild graduates, join the Coffee Café every Tuesday morning at 10 a.m. There are people who would love to see you and reconnect. There is no cost to attend the Coffee Café.
Join us via 

Silent Meditation Tuesday Evenings and Thursday Mornings

Gather for silent meditation and prayer on Tuesday evenings at 9:00 p.m. EST and/or Thursday mornings at 6:30 a.m. EST. There is no program as such. Log on, settle in, breathe, and sit together with our Guild family, holding the world, the Guild, our lives in holy space. There is no cost for the silent meditations.

Join us via Zoom.

 Upcoming Programs at Wisdom House

Wisdom House is an interfaith retreat and conference center presenting programs in spirituality, wellness, the arts, and ecology, while offering hospitality to academic, civic, nonprofit, and business organizations. Wisdom House hosts in-person weekends for the Guild Apprenticeship Program and Graduate Guild Retreats.

Check out these upcoming programs at Wisdom House
  • Proprioceptive Writing, January 18

  • What is Your Story about Forgiveness? January 25

  • Remembering Thomas Merton, January 28

  • Greeting the New Year Retreat, January 29

  • Day of Mindfulness: Cure for a Hectic World/Learning the Art of Nothing to Do, February 11

  • Face to the Rising Sun: Reflections on Spirituals and Justice, February 11

  • Fireside Winter Directed Retreat with Guild member Brother Mark D’Alessio, February 13

  • Wisdom Kitchen’s Cooking Class: Savory Stews, February 18

  • Ash Wednesday Reflection and Meditation, February 22

For More Information

Upcoming Courses at Deep Time Network 

  • Deeptime Leadership & Personal Empowerment, Module 2, Applying the New Cosmology, January 11 through March 24
  • Book Celebration, Cosmogenesis with Brian Swimme, February 23
Deep Time Network Course Information
Upcoming Retreat with Friends of Silence
Tending Fire: A Women’s Retreat at Shepherd’s Spring, February 3-5, 2023.
For More Information
You’re receiving this because you’re a member of the Guild or a Guild member has recommended you because of shared interests. We hope you enjoy hearing from us, but if you would prefer not to receive this, then feel free to unsubscribe at any time.   Shalom. Salaam. Peace.
January 2023
Copyright 2021, Guild for Spiritual Guidance, All rights reserved.
Header Photo Credit, John Keith

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The Guild for Spiritual Gudiance · 25 Gordon Avenue · Briarcliff Manor, NY 10510 · USA

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