Teresa Pasquale Mateus (‘15) — Center for Action and Contemplation

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Teresa Pasquale Mateus (‘15)

Teresa Pasquale Mateus (‘15)

Image of Teresa Pasquale Mateus, Living School Alumna, Class of 2015With increasing urgency over the last ten years, exploring the contemplative path, I have increased questions about the absence of people of color (POC) in contemplative communities, conversations, and teachings. I learned so much through the Christian contemplative lineage, but I knew for myself that the existing container did not and could not represent the fullness of myself and my identity. I also felt there must be others who were deeply seeking the same—a full mystical journey that included and emphasized the identity of being a person of color.

The Mystic Soul Project emanated from that deep calling. I founded this nonprofit along with fellow POC contemplatives Jade Perry and Ra Mendoza to center the voices, wisdom, and identities of POC at the intersections of contemplation, action, and healing.

The project integrates centering black and brown roots of Christian contemplation, engages identity through a reclaiming and decolonizing of one’s own spiritual origins grounded in tribal and indigenous lineages, and necessitates healing practices/rituals and teachings which engage the specific traumas of POC through colonization, oppression, and marginalization. It also explores the contemporary formation of action, specifically POC-centered activism, intersecting healing and contemplation. The Mystic Soul Project began with a retreat in March with eleven POC leaders of faith and justice and will continue with our inaugural conference in January 2018 in Chicago.

For more information (sign up for our newsletter for updates as they come), visit mysticsoulproject.com.

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