About Anam Cara

Welcome

Anam Cara Ministries was founded in 2007 as a place where true soul friendship can be found. Our name, Anam Cara, is an ancient Celtic word meaning “soul friend.” With a soul friend, our entire selves find a place of belonging and presence with another.

 

At Anam Cara Ministries, we believe this kind of trusting and committed relationship is essential to following the Way of Christ. Celtic Christianity and its practices form a foundation to our work. We aim to be a place of grace and hope, where a deeper relationship with God can be pursued in a context of hospitality and safety.

 

To that end, we offer spiritual direction through a curated network of trained spiritual directors who reflect this heart. We facilitate spaces of wrestling and exploration, where community and Scripture, faith and doubt, questions and certainty exist in creative tension. We also offer training in the practice of spiritual direction through a relationally formational experience called the Anam Cara Apprenticeship, as well as supervision and support to spiritual directors in a home called the Peregrini Program.

Our Values

Anam Cara Ministries is rooted in and anchored by a set of values that shape our rhythms, practices, and presence in the world.

 

Dignity

God created us with inherent worth and dignity. Anam Cara seeks to be a non-manipulative presence in all that we do, extending kindness, honoring each person we encounter, and believing that each soul bears the divine image of God.

 

God in Christ

Anam Cara is deeply rooted in the Christian tradition, grappling with the realities of an ancient faith in present time. We are in a constant posture of surrendering to God, trusting that God in Christ accompanies us.

 

Soul Friendship

In true soul friendship, we extend and receive intentional love toward the other. This friendship is not based on transaction, but on gift. As such, it pours forth transformative power beyond the relationship into the world.

 

Centered

Anam Cara is grounded by the communal narrative and practices of Christianity, understanding there has been a conversation going on for centuries around what it means to follow Christ. We choose to listen first, then act, living and contributing both out of and into that conversation.

 

Wrestling

We believe that to live fully in the reality of what it means to be the people of God is to both acknowledge and enact a faith that is in motion. This motion often (although not always) takes the form of wrestling, which we believe is an important practice of encounter and intimacy.

 

Tov

Tov is the Hebrew word (טוב) for Scriptural “good.” It encompasses the reality that things are not only as they are intended to be, but are dynamic and flourishing, giving life and reproducing. The definition we like to use is “the actualization of the potential for life, embedded in the creation by God, when the creation brings it forth with the seeds of future life already in it.” If you’d like to know how we get to that definition, please join us for a Scripture Circle.

 

Shalom

True shalom is far beyond the absence of conflict, or superficial peace. Shalom is the reality of peace that means everything as God intends it to be, wholly integrated and in place, with nothing missing. Shalom is complete, congruent, and full.

 

Spacious

Anam Cara believes that with God, there is sacred abundance and more than enough. There is a hospitality that is overflowing with grace and rest. There is space to be welcomed in, space to form friendships, even space to wrestle or wait.

Our Board

Anam Cara Ministries is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization. As such, we are led by a community of people. While our founder and executive director Tara Owens leads the day-to-day operations, our values, vision, and mission are curated and tended by a group of people who pray for everyone who interacts with Anam Cara on a regular basis. These folks (pictured at left) are always available to answer questions or interact with the Anam Cara community.

 

They are (from left to right, back row to front row) Rachel Reed, Ken Wilson, Sarah Jackson, Christy Janssen (Board Chair), Tara Owens, and Bryan Owens.