The Transformative Power of Story 2023

Thursday, 22 June 2023 5:00 PM - Sunday, 25 June 2023 10:00 AM PDT

31001 N. Valyermo Road, Valyermo, CA, 93563, United States

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Thursday, 22 June 2023 5:00 PM - Sunday, 25 June 2023 10:00 AM PDT

If the event is listed as sold out please call us at 661-944-2178 for real time availability and waiting list. Office hours are from 8:30am- 5:00pm (closed for mass & lunch *11:45a.m- 1:30pm).


The Transformative Power of Story

Thursday, June 22- Sunday 25, 2023

Our modern culture places a high value on non-fiction, deeming it to be the “reality,” while largely minimizing or dismissing the rich source of meaning that can be found in fiction, myth, and parable. Through a psycho-spiritual lens, we will explore how the human psyche can experience significant growth through deep interaction with certain forms of fiction which reflect symbolic and archetypal realities; through a literary lens, we will explore the many activities that fall under the one term “reading” and their effects on the mind and spirit, emphasizing, in particular, the role of the fiction novel on individuals and culture. Can a return to the primacy of fiction and its revelation of the transcendent return the culture to wholeness? 

Mary Kauffman is an oblate of Valyermo. She has an MA in English and has taught ESL, various levels of English and writing, and literature courses at several colleges in Los Angeles and Orange County areas. Now retired, she enjoys sharing her love of reading and writing through participation in different reading and literary groups, particularly those with an emphasis on discovering the transcendent and increasing our Christian awareness through exploration of the written word.


Michael J. Mullard, Obl. O.S.B Cam, Ph.D.
Dr. Mike Mullard has been an oblate of New Camaldoli Hermitage since 2004 and has been a longtime friend of St. Andrews Abbey.  He is a licensed Marriage and Family Therapist with a Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology.  He has also been a certified spiritual director since 2014.  His main interests are in the intersection of spirituality and psychology, contemplative prayer and comparative religions.  He is a member of the Ecumenical Commission of the Diocese of Orange.