Today’s guest is Paul Hutchinson, mediator, therapist, author and brilliant storyteller. A former Director of the Corrymeela Peace and Reconciliation Centre, Paul has distilled his memories and learnings from that time in his delightful book “Between the Bells.” I’ve had the pleasure of working alongside Paul – interweaving spirituality, storytelling, and music with visiting groups. Paul exudes both wisdom and a wry sense of humor – his gentle presence fills a room, and he has that uncanny gift of seeing right through to what’s really going on under the surface. I wanted to hear from Paul about his spiritual journey from searching teenager to reflective Quaker, and about how his background as a therapist and mediator informs his reading of the Psalms. In our conversation, we talk about being drawn to sing a new song, about the importance of hosting all of our feelings, about how we can know when reconciliation is close at hand, and about how we are loved in our unfixed state.
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More about Paul:
Paul Hutchinson is a mediator, therapist, artist and retreat leader. He is a former Director of the Corrymeela Peace and Reconciliation Centre and the founder/Director of Imagined Spaces. Paul has over 25 years experience as a mediator and peace practitioner and has worked extensively in Northern Ireland, in North West of England (as a Neighbourhood Renewal Advisor), in New York, Jerusalem and Canada. He works with individuals, with interpersonal issues, with organisations, congregations and communities. Paul teaches/trains extensively on conflict transformation (Ulster University, Toronto School of Theology) and is a Visiting Lecturer at Dalhousie School of Law and the Atlantic School of Theology (Nova Scotia). Paul is a renowned storyteller and uses narrative practices throughout his work. He has created films such as Waiting & Silence, UPstanding: Stories of Courage from Northern Ireland and BYStanding: The Choices We Made. His latest book is Between the Bells – stories of reconciliation from Corrymeela (2019 Canterbury Press).
The music in this episode is by Celtic Psalms (Kiran Young Wimberly & The McGraths). You can purchase mp3s directly through www.celticpsalms.com
You can find published scores, CDs and mp3s through GIA Music
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How’s your spirit these days? I’d like to ask you the question I ask my guests. It’s a question that’s not always easy to answer – it takes time, space, and intentionality to be able to really listen to our spirits and God’s Spirit in our lives.
If you feel drawn to set aside that time, I wanted to let you know that I’m leading an online Quiet Day (to suit trans-Atlantic timings) on the 12th of June, 2021. Follow this link to book on Eventbrite. I would love to share that quiet space with people like you. There will be music and prayer, meditation and reflection, silence and sharing. It’ll be a beautiful time, good for my spirit as well as yours.
I’d love to hear from you. Email firstname.lastname@example.org or send a message via our Facebook page to share with me how the Psalms have lifted your spirits. If you send an audio file, I may just include it in an upcoming episode!
Whatever it is that brought you here, I’m so glad you’re with us. – Kiran