The Guild for Spiritual Guidance

May 2022 Newsletter

Called, Challenged, and Creating: 
 A Diversity Dialogue Update

by Cari Keith

Called:  In September, 2021, following a weekend Guild retreat with Dr. Fanny Brewster, Cari received a call;  the Guild received a CALL!  Fanny articulated her observation about the unique way Guild members attentively listened to one another, honored one another, and gently challenged one another. She identified something for the organization that we may have intuited, but never clearly articulated for ourselves; something intuited, but rarely engaged in group settings beyond Guild functions. Fanny expressed her wonderment as to why we were not organizationally out in the world; a world much in need of our commitment to deep listening.  Keenly recognizing that listening, holding, and witnessing to another’s story is the first step in any healing process, Fanny invited us to explore with her the possibility of a dialogue collaborative.  She called us to create with her a way to offer opportunities for dialogues in racial healing; opportunities to listen and hold the stories of racial injustice and inequity. She called us to create with her opportunities to be active agents in the cultural healing process.        
In January, 2022, the Guild Board agreed, by consensus, to a working collaboration between Guild members and Jungian Analyst Fanny Brewster. In a number of follow up meetings, Guild members expressed their support and encouragement for the development of a common ministry focused on racial dialogues of injustice and inequity.   
Challenged:  The Guild was called and the organization heard and responded. It will be a challenge – something new always brings with it a challenge. However, like John Lewis’ “Good Trouble,” I chose to believe that this will be a “Good Challenge! The affirmative organizational response to the call to a collaborative ministry between the Guild and the larger community is unique in the history of the Guild. However, as one of our members, Carolyn Nicosia, reminded us, the call to Guild community service is not unique. Carolyn writes, “We often spoke of Guild members having a common work of ministry but that never developed.  Perhaps at this time in the life of the Guild we are being given an opportunity to help in a greatly needed, peace-related work...” This new work and collaboration is in keeping with our organizational diversity statement, the teachings and practices of our strands, and our commitment to sacred listening and spiritual response. The focus of our work together will be on shared conversation and witnessing to the culturally destructive and pervasive presence of racial inequity and injustice. The Guild board and membership is keenly aware of the intersectionality of multiple forms of cultural injustice and inequity. We are choosing, as a first step in sacred activism, to focus on racial injustice. There is much work to be done. We are simply and profoundly committed to beginning…  
Creating:  The organization was called by Fanny. The organization reached out to those members who felt passionate about the call and were able to give consistent and committed time to a process not yet fully designed; to a process that would need their creative input, experience, and willingness to grow through the inevitable discomfort of new creation. At a large gathering on April 29, nine attendees committed to the creative process and to working with and learning from Fanny Brewster. Many more attendees offered their support, prayers, and encouragement.  Our next step moves us beyond an intentional organizational statement of diversity into active participation in the work of building diverse relationships. Our next step will call us to the intentional creators of the sacred space needed to engage those conversations that will move participants toward racial relational healing. Together we begin the process of growing fully into an organization committed to the healing, transformative process of sacred listening and spiritual response. Our next meeting is June 6, 2022 at 1:00 pm. Please hold us with hope and inspire us with your shared or whispered wisdom.     
Andrew Harvey was another Guild presenter who recognized what the Guild had to offer and encouraged the Guild to engage the world in the work of sacred activism. I close with his inspiring words – words that helped me to recognize how very much the Guild, as an organization and as a collective of listeners, is needed in our world. I can almost hear Andrew cheering us on and whispering his encouragement…“A spirituality that is only private and self-absorbed, one devoid of an authentic political and social consciousness, does little to halt the suicidal juggernaut of history. On the other hand, an activism that is not purified by profound spiritual and psychological self-awareness ... will only perpetuate the problem it is trying to solve, however righteous its intentions.” – Andrew Harvey
Called, Challenged, Creating – We, the members of the Guild for Spiritual Guidance have much work to do and much to celebrate!  
      Guild Offers New Spiritual Guidance Supervision Program with Depth Psychology Orientation

The Guild for Spiritual Guidance is offering a new one-year program called Spiritual Guidance Supervision with a Depth Psychology Orientation. The program will commence in November 2022, and the invitation to this program will be limited to Guild graduates in the initial year.

The supervision program invites those who are called to begin a private practice of one-to-one interfaith spiritual guidance or who are already engaged in practicing interfaith spiritual guidance to refine their skills as a spiritual guide. The curriculum utilizes a depth psychology focus as well as individual and peer supervision for aiding the practitioner to gain deeper perspective and awareness of self, and self in relationship to the guide.

The program is designed for those who are looking for support in their spiritual guidance practice; who are looking to grow in understanding of themselves and the ways in which they are present with their guidees; who are looking to deepen their skill with guidees; and who are desiring to deepen their understanding of depth psychology and its impact on their practice.

painting by Becky Nielsen

Learn More

Do You Know Candidates for the AP Program?
Encourage Them to Apply

APXXII is now forming, and there is still time to apply for the next cohort commencing in September 2022.
As Guild graduates, we understand the deep connections we make with one another during the Apprenticeship Program. For many of us, the Apprenticeship Program was a transformational journey.
Do you know someone who is longing for deeper spiritual connection? Please encourage that person to consider applying to APXXII. Just click on the button below to download the AP brochure.

painting by Becky Nielsen 
Downloadable AP Brochure

Aging as Spiritual Practice Workshop in June

June 23-26, at the Mountain Retreat Center, Highlands, North Carolina
Join Guild members and others at the Mountain Retreat Center in Highlands, North Carolina, for a three-day, in-person workshop this June on Aging as a Spiritual Practice. Guild member Paulette Robinson will lead the workshop, which is co-sponsored by Wholeness of the Heart, Sage-ing International, and the Guild for Spiritual Guidance.
Aging is a time of harvesting and bringing the sacred into life. It is a time when the external forces of life make way for an internal focus on life’s purpose and mining life experiences for meaning. Life itself becomes a reflective space. When lived purposefully, aging becomes a spiritual practice. In this course, participants will explore tools for internal and external spiritual practice that can serve this internal movement. They will create meaning-making rituals, deepen meditative states, make intentional sacred spaces, and more.
Paulette Robinson is a certified Sage-ing Leader, graduate of the Guild for Spiritual Guidance, and experienced retreat and workshop facilitator. For the past 20 yeara, Paulette has facilitated healing as a shamanic practitioner using multiple energy modalities and practices.  She has certifications in spiritual and elder coaching, family constellations and ancestral trauma,  alchemical alignment (somatic trauma release), past-life regressions, and mediumship.
Dates: June 23 (1 pm) to June 26 (1 pm) in person at The Mountain Retreat Center, Highlands, North Carolina
Program Cost: $555 
Registration closes on June 9, 2022
Room and Board Cost for lodging and all meals:
Double Room:  $315 (for all meals and lodging for four days and three nights)
Single Room:   $455  (for all meals and lodging for four days and three nights)

Join us on Pilgrimage to Iona August 12-21, 2022  


Two places have recently become available for the pilgrimage to Iona this August.  Pilgrimage offers us the gift of supportive community and solitude. Iona invites us to listen deeply to the voice of the spirit. Iona also invites your voice, and as the island has done for over a thousand years, it holds and witnesses your pain and questions; it celebrates your joy and healing. You are invited to this unique experience. For full details, click on the button below or contact Cari Keith (

Learn More

Pilgrimage to Assisi:
The Piazza and Sacred Community 

by Paul Kimmerling

One could say that the piazza, aka, the square, is the heart of community life in many Italian towns – a place where the past and present overlay each other; a place where daily interactions play out. In Assisi, the most central square is the Piazza del Comune, a short walk from our pilgrimage guesthouse, which means you can enjoy it at a moment’s notice. You’ll find a variety of shops, as well as food and beverages. To take it all in, sit at an outdoor table at Bar Trovellesi, where both locals and tourists go for mid-morning coffee or an early evening aperitivo. 
In the Piazza del Comune, you can see and feel multiple layers of history. Two thousand years ago, when the town was called by its Latin name, Asisium, the piazza was the site of the local Roman forum and a temple to the goddess Minerva. If you want to see an impressive collection of local Roman artifacts, visit the Archaeological Museum at the northwest end of the piazza. Fast-forward to the mid-1200’s, when Giotto featured the Temple of Minerva as a backdrop in one of the many frescos he created for the Basilica of San Francesco, a series that depicts scenes from the saint’s life. This basilica, and Giotto’s renowned series, is one of the highlights of the pilgrimage. Today, the façade of Minerva’s temple stands among later medieval structures as well as more recent ones. 
As we contemplate The Guild’s strand of Sacred Community, we might engage in a series of imaginative exercises about the Assisi of the past and present. In the time of St. Francis, societal change was in the air – the ambitions of the rising merchant class were bumping up against the historical rule of the nobility. We could ask, what sorts of interconnections and interdependencies might have held the community together, or divided it? How might the daily interactions of the time have played out in the Piazza del Comune, and to what purposes? 
We might also imagine how different Francis’ vision of community was – one without the exclusive and unjust distinctions of rich and poor; powerful and powerless; servant and master. A community where love of God and each other, expressed through service to the most underserved and excluded, was the primary focus, rather than the pursuit and maintenance of status or wealth. 
Finally, imagine yourself as a pilgrim in Assisi in May 2023. As you do, ask yourself how might your presence contribute to the community? What sort of interconnections and interdependencies might you experience right here, in the Piazza del Comune? 
Join us to find out.
The retreat is only one year away! Be part of the fellowship of pilgrims building sacred community with each other in the multi-layered richness of Assisi.  Single and double 
rooms are available. Space is limited, so reserve your spot now! 


The author, Paul Kimmerling, a spiritual director and photographer, is one of the co-facilitators for the upcoming pilgrimage to Assisi, “In the Footsteps of Francis and Clare,” in May 2023. His love of Assisi and his deep connection with St Francis prompted Paul to design and lead five retreats in Assisi before retiring there in 2021. His Franciscan retreat, “Live the Questions: A Journey with Francis and Clare,” was offered four times between 2013-2018. In 2019, Paul led “Through Beginners’ Eyes,” a photography retreat to foster new ways of seeing the world and encourage greater creativity in photo making.

1. The Fountain, Piazza del Comune, Assisi
2. Bar Trovellesi, Piazza del Comune, Assisi
3. The Temple of Minerva, Piazza del Comune, Assisi
4. A cozy table, Piazza del Comune, Assisi

Learn More and Register
Save the Date: September 10, 2022
Guild for Spiritual Guidance Annual Meeting

Join the Virtual Coffee Cafe Tuesdays at 10 am 

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 am. There are people who would love to see you and reconnect.

There is no cost to attend the Coffee Café.
Join us via Zoom

Silent Meditation Thursdays at 6:30 am

Every Thursday morning at 6:30, Guild members gather for time together in quiet. There is no program as such. Log on as close to 6:30 as you can, settle in, breathe, and sit together with our Guild family, holding the world, the Guild, our lives in holy space. The meeting closes around 7:00 with a reading. You are welcome any Thursday morning.

For more information and the zoom link please email Holly Moore at:

There is no cost for these meetings.
Status of Monday Night Creative Oasis 
Dear Guild members,

The Creative Oasis will no longer meet on Monday evenings. It has been a gift to engage with many of you and to share the quiet hours of creative space.  Over the past two years, there have been many fond memories among us! Yes! It has truly been two years! As the pandemic kept many of us isolated, the Guild leadership responded in early 2020 to create opportunities for its members to gather via Zoom.  One of those gatherings was the Creative Oasis, an invitation to engage creatively in a medium of our choosing; to join in silence as we worked;  and to share our swirls and colors of our imagination.

With the miracle of vaccines and booster shots, we are all venturing out more and engaging in a variety of in-person opportunities once again. The Creative Oasis is therefore closing its Zoom room for now. Perhaps, at some point in the future, we will gather again, just for fun and not because of a pandemic! The hope of the facilitator team is that we will all set aside time to engage the creative side of our brains in creative, imaginative space. 
With gratitude for your shared creativity and much care for your on-going wellness,

Cari, Holly, Bernice, and Pamela  


 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
  • Retreat for Women in AA and Al-Anon, June 3
  • The Mystic Meets the Prophet, June 3-4
  • Summer Directed Retreats, various dates
  • The Road Not Taken, July 16
  • Surrendered: The Grace of Spiritual Awakening, July 29-30
Wisdom House Program Information

Upcoming Courses at Deep Time Network 

The Deep Time Network is dedicated to orienting humankind to the great story of evolution as our primary context, and learning from it so we can make the best choices possible. 
  • Emergent Dialogue, June through August
  • Quantum Wisdom: Essential Insights from a Revolutionary Science, August
  • Deeptime Leadership and Personal Empowerment, September through June
Deep Time Network Course Information

Upcoming Event at Friends of Silence 

Nan Merrill, one of the founders of the Guild for Spiritual Guidance, founded Friends of Silence in 1987 as an urban contemplative community welcoming individuals of all faiths and cultures.
We Return: Restorying the Heroine’s Journey at Rolling Ridge, June 3-5, 2022
We Return Info

Writers and Artists Wanted

Would you like to write a reflective piece for the newsletter? Would you like to share your poetry, artwork, or remembrances of what made the Guild such a special experience for you? Would you like to write a profile of a Guild member for the newsletter? If so, please contact Lou Anne Bulik. 
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.
May 2022
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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