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September 2014 


Facilitator Spotlight: Penny and Allen Seay

By Chris Farrow-Noble, Council Member

This month for the first time I interviewed two people, Penny and Allen Seay, as our Facilitator Spotlights. In late July they scheduled three days for Veriditas facilitator training and ended up spending the full week at Labyrinth Summer School!

First, for some historical perspective, did you find the labyrinth or did it find you?

Penny: I’ve thought about this fascinating question and feel the labyrinth found me. In the late 90s, my father was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s, and we heard about a labyrinth at a church near our home. I now believe that my acceptance of and understanding about Dad’s illness was tied into walking that labyrinth. 
Allen: Ten years later in 2010 we were in France to celebrate our daughter’s graduation from high school. Penny had registered for a Veriditas workshop in Chartres entitled “Meeting Mary,” led by Judith Tripp. We had continued our longtime interest in labyrinths and were looking forward to experiencing the labyrinth in the Chartres Cathedral. During the workshop, participants went briefly into the Cathedral, and Penny noted several places to show us the next day when we planned to go back together.
Penny: When I walked into the Cathedral during the workshop, I had the overwhelming feeling that I had been there before. Although chairs covered the labyrinth, I was able to stand in the Center, amazed and deeply moved. The next day shortly after our arrival in the Cathedral, the authorities informed us that they were closing the Cathedral in fifteen minutes for a youth pilgrimage. Sadly, we had to leave without walking the labyrinth or even spending time in the Cathedral.

So you still have yet to walk the labyrinth in Chartres Cathedral?

Penny: That’s true, but we will go back! However, with the help of the labyrinth locator, we’ve walked labyrinths whenever and wherever we could.

What inspired you to attend the Facilitator Training at IONS in July?

Penny/Allen: It was a combination of several factors. As members for seven years of Unity Church of the Hills (UCOH) in Austin, Texas, we knew about past efforts and continued desire to build a permanent labyrinth on the church grounds. Plans for a permanent labyrinth were previously unsuccessful, due to a lack of the right combination of resources. While we were uncertain about what our role might be in bringing a labyrinth to UCOH, we knew we could be involved. 
Allen and I decided to attend the Facilitator Training on impulse. We had talked about doing it for years, and the opportunity came. We registered for the Veriditas Qualifying Workshop and Facilitator Training at the Institute of Noetic Sciences (IONS). Initially we planned to spend several days afterwards in the San Francisco area and observing migrating whales.

What happened to change your plans?

Allen: During our wonderful training with Lauren Artress and staff, we met Lars Howlett, whom Master Builder Robert Ferre referred to as his apprentice, at the Facilitator Training. Lars led volunteers in building a different type of labyrinth each evening. We soon realized that we had an extraordinary opportunity to learn from these two experts in the Labyrinth Building class; their wisdom and experience would be important in our efforts to build a labyrinth at UCOH. And we learned that Robert and his wife, Linda, were almost neighbors, living in San Antonio.


What tipped the scales in your decision?

Allen: I would have been happy with either choice. I think it’s always the best of life to have two remarkable opportunities to choose betweenundefinedSan Francisco and whales or building labyrinths with Robert and Lars! So Penny’s long-standing interest in labyrinths tipped the scales for me. During the training we met many wonderful people from all over the world. It was an extra plus that many were staying for the Labyrinth Building workshop. Robert’s reputation as a premier labyrinth builder was a key drawing point, and we had become eager participants in Lars’ creative labyrinth building every evening on the grounds.

What were the most challenging experiences of the Summer School?

Allen: Our biggest challenge was leaving. Kathleen Stewart, Veriditas staff member, teased us about not leaving the grounds all week. It was a very good experience with memorable people and simple basic accommodations. It was like camp for grown-ups, but with excellent food! My left knee was occasionally challenged by the hilly terrain, but nothing was insurmountable. I enjoyed walking the labyrinths we had created with Lars and Robert, as well as the permanent Deer Heart labyrinth on the hill.

What were the highlights of the week?

Penny: In addition to all the learning, we especially enjoyed having time to talk with participants and teachers throughout the day, learning about past experiences and future plans with labyrinths. One fascinating example comes to mind. A woman from Canada had specialized in using labyrinths with pregnant women in her work as a midwife. We all learned so much from each other, including dilemmas and questions around building labyrinths.

Allen: Building labyrinths in the evenings gave me more confidence in my skills as a labyrinth builder and helped me in my learning process.

How do you expect to integrate that week’s learning into your labyrinth work?

Penny/Allen: While we were still in Petaluma, Penny started posting photos of our experiences on Facebook. Before returning, discussion about building a labyrinth had already been rekindled among interested UCOH members, and we learned of potential key donations of resources, time, and expertise. Because of our participation in the Veriditas workshops, we were both excited and quickly volunteered to take the lead in the project. Penny had a very positive meeting with our minister, who established a work group that has already met twice. Through this support and the groups’ efforts, we plan to

make a formal presentation and submit a proposal to the UCOH Board soon. When we mentioned that the first Saturday in May is World Labyrinth Day, our minister, who participates in the work group, said that might be the perfect day for the dedication of the new UCOH labyrinth. We are very hopeful that, at last, a labyrinth will be built.

What type of labyrinth do you plan to propose?

Penny: I have always been drawn to the traditional Chartres labyrinth, probably because I like all the turns. They are opportunities to walk, pause, and change directions. We think we have already identified a site on the grounds. After our Labyrinth Summer School classes, we are more aware of the necessary decisions in the planning and building process.

Donor Spotlight

By Rita Canning, Development Coordinator

For September I had the joy of interviewing Pam Riggs. Pam is a long-time donor who loves and strongly believes in the work of Veriditas.

Rita: When did you first encounter the labyrinth?

It was many years ago, sometime in the1990s at Unity Church in the Dallas area. I was going to the Unity Church where they have a labyrinth. The first time I walked the labyrinth I remember it being so peaceful and wonderful. It was such a great way for me to spend time just talking to God and listening to God. It is a very focused way for me to commune with God. I’m a very slow walker in the labyrinth because I just take that time for myself and for contemplation and for being grateful for the things that I have.

Rita: How did you get involved with Veriditas?

After I first walked the labyrinth I started searching for more information about it. That’s when I came across Veriditas and Lauren. She had a workshop at a retreat center in Navasota, Texas, out in the middle of nowhere but close to the Houston area where I had recently moved. It was a four day retreat and they had put up a canvas labyrinth there. I really enjoyed the retreat – it helped solidify even more my love for the labyrinth.


Rita: What work have you done with the labyrinth, in sharing it with others?

I talk about the labyrinth with lots of people. When I went to Chartres several years ago I had a coworker, a friend, who lived outside of Paris. She came down to Chartres and walked the labyrinth with me. Chartres is a fabulous, phenomenal, wonderful experience that I will never forget and would love to go back soon. I thoroughly enjoyed sharing the labyrinth walk with her and her husband who also joined us. She was very interested and excited to do that and, for me, that was very wonderful. Another time, I went to a retreat outside of Austin, Cedar Breaks, where they have a beautiful outdoor labyrinth. I spent every day walking the labyrinth and thoroughly enjoyed it. Later I brought 2 friends there for the afternoon to walk the labyrinth and it was wonderful, just relaxing together and being contemplative. I find that I like to keep my experiences to myself. It’s so private and personal talking to God and listening God. But I also like to share that with others, passing on that knowledge so that they can experience the joy and the wonderfulness of the labyrinth.

Rita: Why do you donate to Veriditas?

I donate so that Lauren and Veriditas can continue to fulfill the mission of expanding the global knowledge of the labyrinth. The world today would benefit greatly from the peace and joy that people can experience when walking the labyrinth. So I believe very much in spreading the knowledge and the mission of the labyrinth around the world. For me, financially seems the best way to do this. Lauren’s gift to the world is to increase the knowledge of the labyrinth globally and I feel it’s very important to support that. I wish Veriditas great success in their mission!

Special offer from our Product Partner, iSpiritual!



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Global Healing Response

The Global Healing Response, founded in 2005 by Council member Ellen Bintz Meuch, offers an annual theme and quarterly ideas and information to enrich labyrinth walks. The GHR theme for 2014 is Unity and the focus for this quarter is Compassion /Understanding. The quote “Understanding is the first step to acceptance, and only with acceptance can there be recovery.”undefined J.K. Rowling, Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire. The third quarter is posted on the website, We encourage you to visit the site soon and often.

Little Miracles on the Path

Each month, Linda Mikell, secretary to the Veriditas Council and New England Regional Representative, emails a Little Miracles on the Path story to 439 facilitators who have signed up for them. Facilitators from all over the world send her stories about interesting, touching events that happen at their labyrinth walks. If you would like to receive these stories, please contact Linda ( Please don’t forget to send your story when you have one. Little Miracles are archived on the Facilitators Portal of the Veriditas Website.

Veriditas Annual Auction

October 6th to October 27th

The Veriditas organization is growing along with the work of the labyrinth in the world! We have found an easy and fun way to support this growth - and shop for cool stuff at the same time. Our On-line auction, powered by BiddingForGood, is fast approaching. Bidding begins in October. So, now is the time to build a fantastic auction catalog of items. Thanks, in advance, for your interest and support!

Two Ways to Help

Donate an Item

Donating an item is easy! (It’s even easier than listing an item on eBay). Just go to and click “Donate an item.” You will need a digital photo of your item and a description for the listing. If you have any trouble listing an item please contact Joyce Krajian.

Donation ideas include labyrinth items, music, artwork, gift cards to national restaurants or stores (i.e. Starbucks, Borders), getaway vacation sites, services, books signed by authors - you get the idea! No item is too small! It’s great to have a wide price range of things to choose from.

Sponsor our Auction:

There are literally thousands of people who receive the information about our auction and are interested in the labyrinth. So, if you are a labyrinth vendor, artist, author, restaurant or store owner, this is a great way to advertise!!!


Bid on an Item

Beginning on October 6th the auction will be open. Please visit the Veriditas BiddingForGood site often to view our catalog of exciting items. It’s fun to check on your items and bids!

The auction site can be reached at If you have any trouble, please don’t hesitate to contact Joyce Krajian. She will send you an easy link via email.

Feel free to pass this information on to anyone who you think might be interested!

Bid high and Bid often!

Questions? Contact Joyce Krajian at

Help spread the word about our auction on Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest. You can also download an item donation form here to print and share with your local community.

Questions? Contact Joyce Krajian at

Help spread the word about our auction on Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest. 
You can also download an item donation form here to print and share with your local community.

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Veriditas is dedicated to inspiring personal and planetary change and renewal through the labyrinth experience.

We accomplish our mission by training and supporting labyrinth facilitators around the world, and offering meaningful events that promote further understanding of the labyrinth as a tool for personal and community transformation. Our Vision is that the labyrinth experience guides us in developing the higher level of human awareness we need to thrive in the 21st century.

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