What Is the Zion Center for Spiritual Development and Healing
By the Rev. Kimron Reising, former pastor at Zion UCC and founder of the Zion Center
I came to Zion in 2015 with a vision for creating a welcoming space for practitioners of alternative spiritual and healing practices. This vision is born of my belief that Christianity has been too exclusive and judgmental in relation to other faith traditions and the spiritual/healing practices that have been developed around the world, over thousands of years.
My goal is to bridge the chasm that has formed and bring the wealth of experience and knowledge from “marginalized” traditions and practices together in one place. I believe this is being faithful to the Way of Jesus, and brings a smile to God’s face.
The Zion Center is a ministry of Zion Evangelical United Church of Christ, that intentionally reaches out to those who have been hurt or judged by the traditional Christian church, or those who choose to follow a more universal spiritual path that respects every tradition built on unconditional love.
The Zion Center provides a way to experience the love of God and the support of community, but it does not require participation in traditional Christian worship or engagement with traditional Christian practices. Still these valuable resources are available on a weekly basis for those who wish to experience them for the first time, or return to try again.
Oneness with God, unity with the Creator, connection with the Ultimate Source, is the end purpose of nearly all spiritual traditions and practices, including Christianity. This goal is clearly expressed in the teaching of Jesus and articulated by Jesus in John 17:25 (also the motto of the UCC) “that we may all be one.”
The logo for the Zion Center was designed by a personal friend and professional graphic designer, Deborah Doleh. I told her I wanted a dove which is representative of the Holy Spirit in the Christian tradition and also as a sign of Peace across the world. I wanted the colors of the chakras (energy centers in the human body recognized by eastern traditions), which are also the colors of the rainbow. The final symbol is the lotus petal, a symbol of spiritual enlightenment in eastern spiritual practices. Thank you Deborah for a beautiful graphic representation of the mission and vision of the Zion Center.
Spiritual development and healing are gifts that we as a Christian church with a rich history and tradition of faith, have to offer our community. The Zion Center is a way to make those resources available and accessible to the community. As we are able to do this, we may be reshaped, reformed and revived by the community that gathers here. Zion can continue to be a vibrant community of healing, learning and wholeness into the future.
Thank you for the opportunity to travel a new path through familiar terrain and discover the new thing that God may be doing in our midst!