Perhaps you have witnessed Church congregants rolling their eyes in an expression that asks only, “How long to we have to sit here and listen to this?” Oh, maybe you have even been one of those eye-rolling captives. What does it take to grab your spiritual attention? Shawn Moninger, ordained minister at the Unity Center for Practical Spirituality, has probably never seen a soul that would rather be elsewhere. And, for good reason. He has what it takes to keep people in their seats with their attention focused on their spiritual selves.
He is direct, beats around no bush, and is comfortable with intimacy that invites trust. He presents himself just as he is, which, of course, makes others comfortable and eager to listen and take in the lessons. He says he was “not voted the high school boy most likely to become a minister – maybe to need one, but not to be one.” He leads through this sort of candor and the ability to laugh at himself.
Shawn is one of the funniest men around and was actually, in his life before formal ministry, after his own successful stand up career, nominated for an MAC award as a stand-up comedian after winning four MAC Awards and a Backstage Bistro Award all for outstanding Technical Direction for for the NYC nightclub Don’t Tell Mama. Add to this that he is the host of the popular radio show The Good Show with Reverend Shawn. Yes, he used to light people from without. Until he decided he had that far greater power to light people from within, and to show the way to self-acceptance and forgiveness.
Underlying all that Shawn has done with such great success is the feeling he had even as a child that something loved him, something very big loved him despite the abusive childhood he suffered at the hands of people who knew no better. There does not seem to be an area of personal struggle with which Shawn is uncomfortable, and to hear him talk about love, forgiveness and his own journey from self-doubt to spiritual leadership is to be strengthened by Reverend Shawn’s own unusual light.
He talks about his having been “a really big mess” as a boy and teen, about how his mother went from destructive to being a truly good mother to the adult that Shawn became. He told her that he will never lie about his childhood and her part in his pain but that he will never use it again as a weapon against her. Forgiveness was the real healing.
Reverend Shawn is a brilliant guide on the difficult road to healing and recognition of one’s own innate goodness. He is smart, patient, easy to follow and easy to trust. His frequent wry and supportive response to even the most, shall we say, substandard behavior, “You forgot to be good,” is to see that even the most defeated soul is safe in Shawn Moninger’s spiritual hands.
His love letter? Maybe a series of well deserved letters to himself that will serve many purposes. What about what he has been writing on his iPad? His handwriting, he says, is not good so what to do? Here is a clear instance of the love letters you write today ending up a significant part of recorded history.
From me to you with love in the air,
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