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Phileena has spent her life in social justice work among the world’s poor. A member of the New Friar movement, for nearly 20 years she and her husband Chris served with Word Made Flesh in more than 70 countries building community among victims of human trafficking, survivors of HIV and AIDS, abandoned children and child soldiers and war brides.
Author, spiritual director, yoga instructor, public speaker and retreat guide, Phileena is passionate about spirituality and making the world a better place. With a rare gift for communicating the dynamics of the inner life, Phileena gracefully guides others toward growth and transformation.
Phileena has led contemplative retreats for numerous faith communities and organizations across the United States and around the world. She often speaks at universities and seminaries. She has been a featured speaker at conferences such as the Conspire (Center for Action and Contemplation), Q, and Urbana.
Phileena and Chris founded Gravity in 2012 to support the development of consciousness by making contemplative practice accessible to individuals, communities and organizations who engage the challenging social justice perils of our time. Phileena’s work includes public speaking, teaching and writing on contemplative spirituality, facilitation of contemplative retreats, and spiritual direction.
Named “Outstanding Alumni” by Asbury University and one of Outreach magazine’s “30 Emerging Influencers Reshaping Leadership,” Phileena believes that contemplative spirituality is crucial to authentic, creative, liberating social change. She holds a Masters of Christian Spirituality from Creighton University’s department of theology and is a certified spiritual director in the Ignatian contemplative evocative method.
Phileena is a member of the board of directors for the Center for Action and Contemplation, is featured on Q Ideas and The Work of the People, and known for her provocative theological narrative, Pilgrimage of a Soul (IVP 2010) and Mindful Silence (IVP 2018). Click here to listen to various reflections, interviews and speaking engagements.