Dietrich Bonhoeffer (1906-1945) was a Lutheran pastor and theologian who led the Confessing Church movement in Germany against the Nazi government sanctioned by the state Lutheran church. 

An Episcopal priest and spiritual director, Cynthia Bourgeault is the author of seven books, including Centering Prayer and Inner Awakening, Love is Stronger Than Death, The Wisdom Jesus, and her latest, The Meaning of Mary Magdalene.  She is highly respected around the country as a retreat leader and speaker.

Jalaluddin Rumi (1207-1273) is a Persian poet from what is now Afghanistan and Tajikstan. Rumi's name, by which he is known in the West, is indicative of the place where he mostly lived. His father, Bahā ud-Dīn Walad, an Islamic scholar and jurist--also a mystic--settled his family in south central Turkey. Later, after Rumi's mother's death and his father's remarriage, the family moved to Anatolia.

Scholar, poet, and teacher, John Philip Newell is a Companion Theologian for the American Spirituality Centre of Casa del Sol in New Mexico. Newell has won acclaim in the British Isles and North America for his works on Celtic spirituality, including his best known titles Celtic Benediction, Sounds of the Eternal, Listening to the Heartbeat of God, and Christ of the Celts and his two latest, Praying with the Earth and A New Harmony.

Richard Rohr, a Franciscan priest since 1961, is internationally known for his writings and recordings on spirituality. He is the author of Everything Belongs, From Wild Men to Wise Men, The Enneagram: A Christian Perspective, The Naked Now, Falling Upward: A Spirituality for the Two Halves of Life,  and Immortal Diamond: The Search for Our True Self, as well as many other books and articles. He recently founded the Living School for Action and Contemplation, a "school of spiritual thought grounded in the Christian mystical tradition."

Eugene Peterson is a Presbyterian minister and professor emeritus of spiritual theology at Regent College, Vancouver, Columbia and author of over thirty books. Previously, he served for 29 years at Christ our King Presbyterian Church in Bel Air, Maryland and was its founding pastor. Peterson is best known as the translator of the bestselling Bible, The Message.

Bestselling author Karen Armstrong has published numerous books, including A History of God, Islam: A Short History,The Battle for God, Buddha, The Spiral Staircase, Muhammed,The Great Transformation, The Case for God, and most recently, Twelve Steps to a Compassionate Life.

Celtic author, poet, and mystic John O'Donohue (1956-2008) was born in Ireland.  He entered the novitiate for the Roman Catholic priesthood at eighteen and completed his B.A. in English and Philosophy in 1977 and his degree in Theology in 1980. In 1982 he was ordained to the priesthood.

Elaine Pagels has been the Harrington Spear Paine professor in the Department of Religion at Princeton University since 1982. Part of the team of scholars who brought the English translation of the Nag Hammadi scriptures to publication, she is the author of the groundbreaking bestseller and National Book Award winner,The Gnostic Gospels.


The Rev. Mitri Raheb has been the pastor of the Evangelical Christmas Lutheran Church since 1988 in Bethlehem, Palestine, where he was born and raised. He is the president of the Diyar Consortium, a group of cultural, health, and educational centers he founded between 1995-2010.

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