Lauren Artress is a masterful speaker and teacher who quickly engages the listener in a process of discovery. She addresses the spiritual hunger that plagues the Western world and provides a unique answer to this need. Many of our religious symbols—often through overuse—have lost their numinous meaning. Her introduction of the labyrinth back into our awareness brings back an ancient symbol imbued with new meaning devoid of sin and guilt. Through her work with the labyrinth as a path of prayer and a walking mediation, Lauren found her voice connected directly to the passion of her ‘soul-assignment’.
Lauren Artress is a Canon of Grace Cathedral in San Francisco. Laurance S. Rockefeller recognized her visionary work and funded her creation of Quest: Grace Cathedral Center for Spiritual Wholeness in 1987. It was out of the spiritual programming she did through Quest that she taught herself large group spiritual work. This work eventually led her to the labyrinth.
She founded a non-profit named Veriditas, the World-Wide Labyrinth Project in 1996 to “pepper the planet with labyrinths”. With over 3500 labyrinth sites in the US alone, her non-profit work has embraced the vision to activate and transform the human spirit through the Labyrinth Experience. The Veriditas offices are located at the Institute for Noetic Sciences retreat center in Petaluma, CA. Lauren is an Episcopal priest, spiritual director and licensed Marriage and Family Therapist in the State of California. She offers Spiritual Direction, Life Coaching and brief psychotherapy in her home office or by phone. She offers couples’ therapy to those in the Bay Area.
Lauren received her Bachelors Degree in Special Education at Ohio State University, her Master’s Degree in Education at Princeton Theological Seminary and her Doctor of Ministry Degree in Pastoral Psychotherapy at Andover Newton School of Theology. She trained in psychodynamic psychotherapy at the Blanton-Peale Graduate Institute at the Institute of Religion and Health in New York City and held a private practice there from 1974 to 1986. She holds an honorary doctorate from The California Institute of Integral Studies in 1999. She received the Gandhi, King, and Ikeda Peace Award for her work in bringing people together in creative, peace-giving ways. She is on the Editorial Board of Presence Magazine, a publication of Spiritual Director’s International. She is a panelist on the Washington Post/Newsweek blog called On Faith.