Falling Upward while running with the wolves

In the 1960s and 70s, when the world seemed topsy-turvy in America, I was in my teen years and trying to figure my way through life. I entered college, got married and had children, while my husband pursued the path to become a professor. At one point, I realized, something inside was nagging at my heart, and would not let me be at peace doing my secretarial work; I just knew it wasn’t the right path forward. I had the chance to study theology and then attend seminary. At one point early in my ministry, a friend gave me a copy of “Women who Run with the Wolves,” and said, “you might appreciate what she is saying.” I couldn’t read it fast enough and realized how much I wish I had had the book when I was younger. Ever since, I’ve taught it to many women’s groups and see the women engage the stories and find a freedom to speak in ways for which they’ve hungered for years.

Last year, I began teaching Richard Rohr’s “Falling Upward,” after discovering his life changing theological perspective which became quite a gift. I so appreciated how he invited us to learn that we each have a life changing experience and thus move into what he calls our “second half of life.”

This past year, as I taught both books separately, I realized how each complements the other and deepens a person’s inner journey; Estes offering her insights into feminine development through the great Jungian psychological lens, and Rohr integrating some of his theological and spiritual insights into his Jungian understanding through the masculine lens. I have read and studied women’s spirituality extensively and have been aware that the masculine and feminine journeys are similar, but different. I thought: What if I offered a retreat imagining a dialogue between Estes and Rohr; a dialogue between the feminine and masculine experiences and the gifts gained as they evolved. Are you curious? Come and explore imagine this dialogue with us and let’s see what buried treasures we can discover together.

Read more about this special retreat here.


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Lee Ireland

Rev. Lee A. Ireland is a full-time Interim Pastor.  She was trained as a pastor at Andover Newton Theological Seminary and trained as a Spiritual Director at Mercy Center, Madison, CT.  Since 1990, she has been leading retreats and serving churches. ...