Wellstreams Class of 2015
Front Row: Ana Berrios-Allison, Ernestine Ujah, Jayne Reynolds, Donna Hissrich, Susan Kramer; Middle Row: Leslie Flemming, Barbara Hubbell, Sandra Weisner, Evy Buchanan, Wellstreams director Carol Ann Spencer, OP; Top Row: Kim Paskell, Marsha Ryan, Debra Aichele, Beckie Boger
Wellstreams graduates talk about Wellstreams and spiritual direction in these YouTube videos >
I’ve been blessed to experience the diversity of God’s love for me. Every Wednesday at the Martin De Porres Center my two lands have been coming together, redeeming my life story while preparing it to overflow with wellstreams of water. Ana Berrios-Allison (2015 graduate)
Like the cycle of leaves on a tree…new life is only preceded by death, the letting go of the old.
My journey at Wellstreams was about that new life. With the warmest of intentions, people have congratulated me on my “success” or “accomplishment” as a graduate of the Wellstreams program. I simply smile and know that there was no such accomplishment or success; rather it was a releasing of all that was hindering love and life within me.
Early in my journey at Wellstreams I faced many fears. I held on tightly, as though I would disappear if I released those fears. (Imagine a tree holding on to its leaves…It would never know new life.) In the safe and sacred space of my sojourners, peers, faculty, and spiritual directors, I was able to trust the process of letting go of much that bound me. Letting go of my fears, my pride, and my “image” was like a death in many ways. In fact it was a death of the false illusions that I thought were me—only to discover it was the pathway to real Life! As I let go, my roots grew deeper into Love, giving me an inner strength and grounding that helps to weather the storms of life. It continues to enable me to trust in the continual cycle of the seasons of life, knowing that God is ever present in all.
This is a journey not of strength or determination—it is one of trust in Love. It is a journey that will not disappoint. It is a pathway to real inner freedom and peace.
When I reflect on my experience at Wellstreams, I know that it was truly the gift of life. Barbara Hubbell (2015 graduate)
Wellstreams…for me the experience was all about birthing. My initial weekend in the class left me feeling pregnant—at 64! And throughout the almost 3 years there were many births into new levels of understanding. My inner development was God directed as the mysteries of life were revealed in both micro and macro images. I became more at one with the universe and with myself, moving outward and inward almost simultaneously. Being a gardener and flower-lover, an image that I adopted for myself was the poppy. From the tiniest seed, to a hard-shell bud, self-protecting up to the moment when the flower emerges with petals that are exuberant in their wild, brilliant, frilly plentitude. Wellstreams watered me well during my fertility and development while leading me closer to the source of living water. Kathie Houchens
I had no idea that listening to myself and walking through my own inner longings would be my journey with Wellstreams. I learned to know myself in relation to God’s Grace and how to listen to others as they journey through life. I learned to put myself aside and be available for someone else. Wellstreams gave me my voice. I learned the “both/and” of things instead of “either/or”; and to revel in that freedom. It was a blessing to grow in such a safe and graced community of staff and participants. This program has truly been life changing for me. It is wonderful to have the tools so freely given during Wellstreams to continue growing with God. Sandy Oppermann
I have always been particularly fascinated with and fond of kaleidoscopes: their colors, shapes, hues, designs, changeability, interest, connections, angles, light, shadows, movement. The Wellstreams journey for me is like living inside a kaleidoscope. Katherine Murphy
Wellstreams has been my weekly “oasis.” Regardless of the way the rest of my life was going, I looked forward to class time because I knew I would be welcomed, accepted, and surrounded by love. Wellstreams was the place where the personal relationships with God and myself were nurtured and encouraged to grow. Jacquelyn Dean
There are so many ways that Wellstreams has touched and continues touching my life. This experience has been life changing for me in so many ways… The learning is difficult, challenging, sometimes confusing, wonderful, creative, bringing clarity and always pushing out the boundaries of me, of discovering more about my true essence, of my relationship with God, others, and myself. I wonder sometimes what to do with Wellstreams and definitely wonder what I will do without it! And I know that this experience will continue to be a true gift in my life. Thanks be. Sue Ulmer
The Wellstreams experience for me was one of deep, lifelong transformation that erupted in the midst of traumatic encounters of being human that I might learn to listen with others in search of the blessing of God in their lives. In Wellstreams I learned more than just the beginning skills of spiritual direction. I learned how to love again, love myself for the sake of God. Dave Boling