Stephen Wright works as a spiritual director and trustee for the Sacred Space Foundation (SSF). Before this, he had a long and distinguished nursing career in the National Health Service and academia, the Royal College of Nursing, and as a consultant to the WHO. He gathered a few glittering prizes along the way. Then his personal and professional life took an about-turn over 35 years ago through a series of life-changing spiritual experiences. Consequently, he developed an interest in spiritual matters and the connection with wellbeing, and cofounded the SSF, to support those in spiritual crisis. He was made an Honorary Fellow of the University of Cumbria in 2013 for his work connecting spirituality and health. Three books explore the nature of healing relationships:
- Therapeutic Touch: Theory and Practice;
- Sacred Space: Right Relationship and Spirituality in Healthcare; and
- Reflections on Spirituality and Health.
- Coming Home: Notes for the Journey is a personal and scholarly account of spiritual awakening and support.
Stephen has received significant development in spirituality and spiritual direction in the presence of several renowned spiritual teachers, most especially his mentor Ram Dass, at the Interfaith Seminary, and in the depth of his relationship with his fellow trustee and SSF cofounder Jean Sayre-Adams. He works with individuals seeking spiritual guidance and organizations developing the practice of healing, spiritual care, conflict resolution, staff support, compassion, and leadership. He is a supporter of and an activist in several environmental movements. As an ordained interfaith minister, he brings a rich experience of spiritual practice from many faiths to his work, as well as being a member of the Iona Community. He is a trustee of TheWEL, a charity based in Scotland offering groundbreaking approaches to wellbeing. With the support of the Diocese of Carlisle (in 2021 he was made a member of the Synod), Stephen established the St. Kentigern School for Contemplatives in 2018. His other recently published works include
- Burnout: a spiritual crisis: from stress to transformation;
- Contemplation: words and silence for the Way Home;
- The Kentigern Way: A life and Lakeland pilgrimage;
- A Grasmere pilgrimage;
and collections of poetry and chant:
Heartfullness: The Way of Contemplation: 12 steps to freedom, awakening and the Beloved completes a quartet of related books on spiritual awakening and is a deep, experiential ‘course’ in liberation from addiction to the ego-self, opening to the way of contemplation, and becoming receptive to the Beloved and a path of service.
He lives with his partner in the English Lake District, deepening service and spiritual practice, participating in his local church community, taking care of his organic garden, and enjoying grandfatherhood.
Discussion of this interview in the BatGap Community Facebook Group.
Interview recorded October 16, 2021.
Video and audio below. Audio also available as a Podcast.