Dr. Brigitta Beer – Brisbane, Australia
Dr Brigitta Beer, BA, BSW, D Min is a Transpersonal Gestalt Psychotherapist, social worker, feminist, social and peace activist within Soroptimist International and Unifem Australia and has been living and working in the Brisbane area for many years. She originates from Austria and maintains her extended family connections there and with her daughter in Melbourne. Brigitta studied Creation Spirituality at Wisdom University (USA), graduating with a Doctor of Ministry degree. Her autobiographical book ‘Mystics Yesterday and Today: the love that connects us all’ (2008), relates her exploration through the “dark night of the soul” to understanding.
Brigitta is an Interfaith Minister and works within Believing Women for a Culture of Peace, as well as in the interfaith community and the larger society, creating tolerance and understanding of different cultures and religions. She is also a member of Womenspace (Brisbane). Since her retirement, Brigitta enjoys participating in the Redcliffe Theosophy Society, travel and sharing time with friends. Her interests include many cultural expressions, including the Opera. Brigitta says, “As a social and sacred activist you are always working no matter where you are. I know together we can change the world”.
Rev. Patrick Carroll – Melbourne, Australia
Patrick graduated from One Spirit Interfaith Seminary in 2008 but has participated in service and interfaith/intercultural dialogue since he was a boy. Patrick studied Liberation Theology at Georgetown University where he also worked with first year students and served the LGBT campus community. He then moved on to New York City where he earned his Master’s Degree in Social Work and worked for seven years on a mental health team in homeless shelters servicing homeless young people and families.
In 2011, Patrick relocated to Melbourne with his partner, Tom. He now works with young people living in residential care, maintains a strong connection with One Spirit and he is eager to foster the OSIS and wider interfaith community in Australia and around the world.
Rev. Siobhan Christian – Wollongong, Australia
Siobhan graduated from The New Seminary and was ordained in 2009. She works as an Advocate at the University of Wollongong and is also involved with developing community projects in conjunction with the Illawarra Women’s Interfaith Network. She has been facilitating Labyrinth events since 2008 (Veriditas-trained) and has been studying Transpersonal Counselling since 2009 (Sandplay, Transpersonal Art Therapy).
In 2010, Siobhan fulfilled her dream of learning to play the Crystal Alchemy Bowls, which she performs regularly, with love, for community groups and at galleries. Her great interest is the Shamanic traditions which have inspired her to seek a more soulful lifestyle of creativity, integration and meaning, close to nature.
Rev. Dr. Stephanie Dowrick – Australia and New Zealand
Reverend Dr Stephanie Dowrick has been writing and teaching from an interfaith perspective (and uniting psychological and spiritual insights) for more than 25 years. She has been leading retreats for much of that time, both inAustraliaand overseas, and was ordained by The New Seminary in 2005.
Stephanie has been leading services at Pitt Street (264) Uniting Church in Sydney since 2006, with Pitt Street’s minister, Rev Ian Pearson, offering the interfaith congregation invaluable hospitality. This large, diverse congregation meets each third Sunday of the month at 3pm. Dr Kim Cunio is the musical director and the music offered is quite exceptional. Stephanie also leads two spiritually inclusive retreats each year at Mana Retreat Center in NZ. From that work – which began in 2000 – a lively interfaith community has developed in Auckland offering meditation groups and monthly services, led by Rev Hilary Star Foged (One Spirit graduate) who also works closely with Stephanie at the Mana Retreats.
Stephanie’s principal work is writing. She is the author of more than a dozen highly acclaimed books that include Forgiveness and Other Acts of Love, Intimacy and Solitude, The Universal Heart, Everyday Kindness, and In the Company of Rilke, a spiritual study of the visionary poet, Rainer Maria Rilke. She offers a clear vision of the ethics and inspiration of an inclusive path in her 2010 book, Seeking the Sacred. You can receive regular inspirations from Stephanie Dowrick via her “Official Stephanie Dowrick” Facebook page or by joining The Universal Heart Network (see links section to the right).
Rev. Kerry (Kanta) Dwyer – Sydney, Australia
Kerry has drawn together her life and work as a theatre director, spiritual healer and civil celebrant culminating with her ordination from The New Seminary as an Interfaith Minister in 2009. Her guru, Sri Haidakhand Babaji, has been her spiritual guide for more than 21 years and she lives according to his main teachings of truth, simplicity and love.
Kerry currently hosts sacred fire ceremonies (“havan” or “yagna”) in the specially constructed fire pit at her Sydney home, and is dedicated to working with all the elements of nature, to find a harmonious, sustainable and spiritually conscious relationship with our extraordinary planet.
Rev. Dr. Kim Jewel Elliott AC JP – Aotearoa, New Zealand
Kim graduated from One Spirit Interfaith Seminary in New York in 2013 but her previous roles focussed on social services, specialising in youth work and sexual health education. She held a tenured academic position for 10 years and completed a PhD in spirituality and sexuality. She currently presents and publishes academic writing.
Kim has been a member of the lively Auckland Interfaith community led by Rev Hilary Star for 3 years and a registered marriage, civil union and funeral celebrant for 12 years. She performs a variety of ceremonies throughout beautiful New Zealand.
Rev. Jennifer Greenham – Melbourne, Australia
Jennifer has long been interested in people’s rite of passage; those times in our lives that mark out the significant transitions that punctuate our journeys. Ceremony and ritual have been used for eternity to give meaning, honour and celebration to these occasions. Jennifer’s work in this area is supported by her Interfaith Ministry Ordination in 2009 and Commonwealth Registration as a Civil Marriage Celebrant, and is available to conduct ceremonies upon request. She is an active volunteer and board member of the Interfaith Centre of Melbourne, supporting the work of its founder and director, Rev Helen Summers.
More recently Jennifer has been directing her energies toward a career in Mental Health Chaplaincy undertaking studies in Clinical Pastoral Education at a major hospital in Melbourne. This brings together her extensive background and experience in the community mental health sector with the keen desire to move into an active ministry role. She is also a Volunteer Community Chaplain with the Victorian Council of Churches Emergency Ministry. Jennifer brings to her work a soul-full and authentic expression. She believes that an open heart is the grace of God on earth, and it is with this in mind that she consciously approaches her various roles.
Rev. Ann Joel – Sydney, Australia and Brazil
Ann graduated from The New Seminary in 2011. She has a long-time practice as a spiritual healer and teacher, particularly through her relationship with John of God in Brazil. Ann regularly takes groups to visit John of God, including those who are ill and is also often asked by families of those nearing the end of their lives to attend the death bed to assist “passing over”.
Ann practices from a clinic in the Sydney’s CBD, teaches at the Awareness Institute and runs workshops throughout Australia.
Rev. Josephine Kerestes – Melbourne, Australia
People who have no connection with organised religion still require significant and appropriate ceremonies marking important transitions in life. Josephine understands this and, as a busy, professional civil celebrant, she creates and presents wedding and funeral ceremonies to elevate the spirit, connect people with each other and to their community. She has previously worked as a hospital pastoral carer and is currently studying a Master of Social Work. Completing her studies with One Spirit Interfaith Seminary, she was ordained as a Minister of Interfaith at Riverside Church, New York in June 2012.
The core of her spiritual formation is Christian religion and she is inspired by the potential for growth that lies in the common ground between Eastern and Western philosophies. Her qualities encourage people to place trust in her, and her efforts to live an ethical life inspire respect, love and emulation. She is also a member of Spiritual Directors International and enjoys companioning people in need.
Rev. Shari Landeg – Tasmania, Australia
Shari’s ordination with One Spirit Interfaith Seminary is the culmination of a long-held dream. From a young age, her indigenous heritage fostered a great awareness for and appreciation of the sacred dimension of the natural world. It also gave her a love of cultures, people and “place”. She encountered the Theosophical Society in her mid teens which opened her mind to a diverse range of worldviews, spiritual and religious beliefs and she has maintained the connection with TS ever since. Shari became a Tibetan Buddhist in her late twenties and had a primary role in the establishment of a Tibetan Buddhist centre, Kagyu Thigsum Chokyi Ghatsal, in Tasmania, in 2000. A Bachelor of Arts in Asian Studies deepened her passion for cultural studies and led to working and teaching in a variety of educational settings. Shari is also an accredited celebrant working in Tasmania.
Rev. Dr. Laurie Lea Levine – Sydney, Australia and Los Angeles, USA
Laurie is an author, civil celebrant and healer, a professional corporate speaker and television presenter, including as host of her own program. She has been in practice for over 20 years and is a Kundalini Yoga teacher, spiritual teacher, Master Practitioner of Neuro Linguistic Programming and developed her own healing modality, Emotional Release Point Therapy. Laurie completed her Doctorate in Divinity from Emerson Institute in Los Angeles, is an ordained Science of Mind (New Thought) Minister and conducts all kinds of sacred ceremonies, including blessings and weddings. She lives on the Central Coast of NSW and has been holding gatherings in Sydney for almost 7 years combining meditation, live music and singing, spiritual message, candle lighting, readings and sharing for about 10-20 people twice a month. Laurie remains affiliated with the Emerson Institute and Agape International Spiritual Centre in Los Angeles.
Rev. Peter Lloyd – Hong Kong and London, UK
Peter is a Findhorn Fellow, who, after 7 years living there returned to his birth city of Hong Kong where he has edited and published spiritual magazines and guides for the last 14 years. In 2000, he became moderator of the Hong Kong Network on Religion and Peace which organises monthly talks, dialogues, visits to places of worship, annual Days of Peace and retreats for all to experience and share different faith backgrounds. In 2008, Peter was ordained by the Interfaith Seminary in London. He is currently studying Process Oriented Psychology in UK but his formal ministry is as a celebrant, organising dialogues with the HK Interfaith network and monthly services for the Unitarian Universalists.
“My ministerial vow is to ‘love fully and serve God’. I don’t always succeed but it is what I aspire to on a daily basis”. He is also a registered Australian Civil Celebrant and can conduct weddings on Australian soil. In the last few years he has celebrated 20 weddings, mostly but not exclusively faith weddings (i.e some secular) in Hong Kong and the Region, as well as other ceremonies – baptism, divorce and rites of passage. Peter is based in Hong Kong but happy to work anywhere in Asia.
Rev. Shalani McCray – Sydney, Australia
Shalani graduated from One Spirit Interfaith Seminary in 2011 but with her extended family has been involved with the interfaith community at Pitt Street Uniting Churchfor several years. Shalani has begun offering inclusive interfaith gatherings at Cronulla, Sydney, which she and friends were moved to create after the Cronulla riots in 2005. These are held on a monthly basis in the meeting rooms of the Cronulla library. A not-for-profit organisation has been formed with office bearers to administer the local activities. Shalani sees her home faith community as Pitt Street and the Cronulla gatherings as an outreach/extension of that.
Rev. Jenne Perlstein – Melbourne, Australia
Jenne graduated from One Spirit Interfaith Seminary in New York USA as an Interspiritual Minister in June 2015. Jenne believes that the richness of many faiths and spiritual paths can lead us all to the Divine wisdom within. Jenne has a deep back ground in Christianity, (Protestant and Catholic), Buddhism and Judaism, Kabbalah, Wicca and humanistic approaches to life. Jenne has a passion for ceremony, life’s events and ritual. She has studied and participated in many spiritual, ceremonial events, psychological workshops and conferences. Jungian and other psychological approaches particularly complex trauma of childhood, are deep areas of study for Jenne which assists her intuitive skills in aiding people in illuminating their unconscious processes and their journey to self-awareness. She has travelled widely, learning and embracing the world’s ceremonies and life paths.
Jenne has 30 years’ experience as a Social Worker with a degree in Medicine, having worked in health, disability, rehabilitation, education,aged care and Aboriginal social justice. Jenne currently runs a psycho- spiritual counselling practice, is a Civil Marriage Celebrant (approved by the Commonwealth Government of Australia in Nov 2012), and has conducted many weddings and baby naming’s and offers a Funeral celebrancy/ministry, in Melbourne. Jenne’s interspiritual, humanistic philosophy and Social Work experience, means that she can offer diverse resources in counselling, spiritual ritual and ceremony as part of her Ministry.
Rev. Tim Pickles – Bangkok, Thailand, other South East Asian countries and UK
Hilary graduated from One Spirit Interfaith Seminary and as well as leading the very active interfaith community at the Subud Centre in Auckland and monthly meditations at Pt Chevalier, she is the facilitator of the Auckland Spiritual Learning Community.
Hilary also works closely Rev. Dr Stephanie Dowrick facilitating two retreats each year at Mana Retreat Centre at Coromandel. As a lecturer in learning communities at the Auckland UNITEC, she brings a focus on education to her interfaith work and practice.
Rev. Heather Topp – Sydney, Australia
Heather’s personal faith is Buddhist and she is a member of the Interfaith Committee and Chaplaincy Planning Committee of the NSW Buddhist Council. Heather trained as a Disaster Recovery Chaplain at Westmead Hospital and as a chaplain with the NSW Buddhist Council. She currently sits on 3 committees at Canterbury District Hospital, the Clinical, Community Participation and Advanced Care Planning Committees. As a result of her input, Canterbury recently opened an interfaith “Quiet Room” showing five major religious symbols on its door: Christian, Moslem, Jewish, Hindu and Buddhist. Heather is also a Marriage (Civil) and Funeral Celebrant and bereavement counsellor. She graduated from The New Seminary in 2009.
Rev. Chris Turner – Sydney, Australia and New York
Chris moved from Brooklyn, New York, to the Illawarra region in Australia in December 2012, primarily to start a family with his new partner. Chris has a BA in Environmental Studies and Economics, an MA in Sustainable Business and Communities and is currently working on a PhD proposal. He was ordained with One Spirit Interfaith Seminary in June 2013 and is currently self-employed as a Consultant for organizations and individuals working to identify and enrich the soul of their work.
Chris is active in his local community, volunteering with several organizations and offering ministerial services both in person and digitally. A dervish in the Nur Ashki Jerrahi Sufi order, Chris believes wholeheartedly that the paths to the Divine are as many and as varied as every breath and while he seeks to serve, there is also a conscious effort not to restrain and label what service means.
Rev. Diane Marama Winder is an American writer, international teacher and social activist, biomedicine specialist and spiritual guide who was raised in the hills and valleys of the Connecticut River. She grew up with a strong, creative influence from her Polish-Russian mother and a passion for nature from her father’s Dutch-German/Scottish-Irish heritage. For over a decade she has lived in New Zealand. She acknowledges the wisdom and guidance of the land, her ancestors and teachers.
Her ordination in 2012 through One Spirit Interfaith Seminary in New York City was the fulfillment of a lifetime of study and practice in interspiritual customs, wisdom traditions, and ethnic, cultural and aesthetic expression. She has been called to work in the world, yet the contemplative and mystical have always been part of her life. Her ministry is dedicated to sacred service across hemispheres and cultures, to help in the growing expression of spiritual wisdom, global justice and sustainability, and a humanity conscious of its unity with the web of life and cosmos. A former corporate executive, she holds a degree in Biology and has been at the forefront of innovations in medicine, leadership and learning. She has written extensively (over 300 published works) and spoken widely to audiences for over 35 years and brings this wealth of experience to her ministry and to her writing, lectures, workshops and retreats.
Diane is Co-Founder and Spiritual Director of the Sephira Institute and Winder Foundation, former National Vice President of United Nations Association of New Zealand and delegate on climate change and indigenous issues. She is a member of Spiritual Directors International and Union of Concerned Scientists, Auckland and Waikato Interfaith Councils, Life Member of the Sierra Club. She is pursuing a doctorate in ecopsychology, mythology and mysticism.
There are 48 Interfaith Ministers listed with Interfaithnet (and counting) and not all are shown here. If you wish to contact an Interfaith Minister in the Asia Pacific Region but they’re not listed above, leave a note in the comments section and the Site Moderator will get back to you.