Visio Divina in the Southwest

A photo essay by Beth Griffith

By Beth Griffith
part of the Selah Community

Editor’s note: While Lectio Divina is a method of praying with scripture, Visio Divina (Latin for “divine seeing”) is a method for praying with images or other media. For a “how-to” on Lectio Divina visit SelahCenter.org. Debora Buerk, editor


Upcoming Events

Going Deeper

Two-part Workshop
September 24, 2022: Session One
October 22, 2022: Session Two
9:00am-12:30pm (PST)
Hybrid – In Person in the Edmonds area and Online

Learn more at SelahCenter.org under the Events tab.

Kairos Morning

Come together online each week, the community of Kairos provides a unique contemplative experience with a spiritual practice and breakout group that shares the time through silence, art, music, and teaching. Kairos opens up space to encounter the Spirit, one another, and oneself through God’s inviting presence.

  • one hour contemplative gathering (online)
  • free and come anytime
  • Friday, 10 am with a zoom link invite

Learn more at SelahCenter.org under the Events tab.

Upcoming Events at Selah Center

Going Deeper

Two-part Workshop
September 24, 2022: Session One
October 22, 2022: Session Two
9:00am-12:30pm (PST)
Hybrid – In Person in the Edmonds area and Online

Miss being a part of Living from the Heart 
with the community who walked with you,
the material you explored, the practices you engaged?

Do you have a longing for going deeper
 in your understanding of and encounter with God?

Want to continue your contemplative journey 
with the help of others who have also been walking along the road?

Join us in the first post-Living from the Heart 
offering for those who have already been a part of
Living from the Heart 
and others who have traveled for a while along the contemplative journey.

We will explore both collectively and personally the 
invitation toward integration and encounter with God.

Facilitators Mary Pandiani, Jeffrey Brusseau, and Edie Finnell
will lead our time of your engagement with God, others, and yourself.


$140 for both sessions
Register Here
Questions? Contact Mary Pandiani
at director@selahdirector

Happy Anniversary Selah!

August 20, 2007-2022

Message from John Kiemele, 
Founder and Director Emeritus

Dear Selah Community,
On this 15th Anniversary of our Selah Center, we want to extend our prayers and blessings for all the gratitude we feel. Thank you for fanning our community flame and for shepherding the movements of our collective hearts. What a deep and abiding gift to share this contemplative journey with you all!

The traditional gift marking the 15th anniversary is crystal. May we all receive the gift of God’s Spirit, clarity, and clearness toward the fullness of life that extends such experiences to others.

The contemporary gift for a 15th anniversary is a clock or other timepiece. May this birthday greeting be received as a reminder from the Creator of Time Eternal to take time for ample pause, reflection, and response to the Loving Presence among us and through us as a dispersed community of contemplative companions.

May God’s blessings continue to fill and lead us all. And may we remain in the awe and wonder of life with God.

Our hearts and prayers hold Selah,
John and Marissa Kiemele

Mary Pandiani,
Executive Director,
Selah Center

About Selah Center

Selah is a welcoming community that pauses, encounters the Spirit through contemplative practices, and grows together toward wholeness and loving others.
Learn more at SelahCenter.org.

About John Kiemele

John Kiemele
Founder of Selah Center
Seattle, Washington
Program Director
Rolling Ridge Retreat Center
Andover, Massachusetts

John Kiemele is a wellbeing educator and spiritual director who currently companions individuals, teaches various seminars and lifestyle classes, leads contemplative retreats, and also serves as Program Director at Rolling Ridge Retreat Center in North Andover, Massachusetts.  With a focus on contemplative soul care, John gratefully walks alongside individuals, small groups, classrooms, and congregations.  Recognizing how intentional pausing and listening unlocks life, John strives to engage the whole person – body, mind, soul – in the lifelong process of living well.  John received his Ph.D. in education/spirituality from Talbot School of Theology, with post-doctoral emphases in Spiritual Direction

Good Morning

On the Pulse of the Morning

(Excerpt)

…Lift up your eyes upon
This day breaking for you.
Give birth again
To the dream….
Here, on the pulse of this new day
You may have the grace to look up and out
And into your sister’s eyes, and into
Your brother’s face, your country
And say simply
Very simply
With hope—
Good morning.

Maya Angelou

Thoughts from Mary

I am grateful for sabbath, even when it doesn’t turn out as you had hoped. My aspirations for the month included down time along with organizing my office, playing with friends and family, and spontaneously saying yes to whatever showed up for the day. Instead, I spent over a week in bed with Covid (and a couple more weeks of tiredness) along with grieving the loss of a dear and close friend who while struggling through her cancer seemed to be living a full life. The sabbath that I hoped would restore some strength and perspective became a time of recognizing my weakness and need for God and others.

Sabbath is not something we accomplish or acquire or strive towards. It’s a resting in what God has for us.

Mary Pandiani

And so it is that I return to the call of Selah and my other responsibilities with a bit of heavy heart and weariness. Yet, I still remain grateful, not only for sabbath in whatever form it takes but also for this day. I want to claim, as Maya Angelou does, that I can say “good morning” to today, trusting that God will provide me with what I need for this day.

Sabbath is not something we accomplish or acquire or strive towards. It’s a resting in what God has for us. And for today, all I have is today. So may you, along with me, find the voice to say “help” where help is needed, trust that God shows up even when grief feels oppressive, and lean into “good morning” as a reflection of the hope that rests in God’s abundance, not my capability or circumstance.

Pax Bonum,
Mary Pandiani
Executive Director
Selah Center

Mary Pandiani, D.Min, serves as Selah’s Executive Director, leading the community and organization through its current transition period into future possibilities. Mary has served in various capacities for Selah, including as a founding board member, seminar/group leader, and co-facilitator for Selah’s extended programs, Living From The Heart and Way of the Heart. Mary is a spiritual director and coach, co-facilitator for a spiritual direction training program, and advisor for doctoral students. Mary received her Doctorate of Ministry at Portland Seminary, and her work focuses on a posture of contemplative living across the seasons of life. Her foundation starts with a love for the God who wants to be known and a desire to help others to pause-notice-listen-respond in ways that lead to a deeper understanding of God’s divine invitation. With the support of her husband Bill, Mary serves Selah while also enjoying her family of four adult daughters and their families. Mary lives in Gig Harbor WA where she knows the value of beauty in creation and the gift of community.

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Join Mary every Friday at 10:00 AM for Kairos. It’s a time for conversation the “selah way.” Welcome friends, old and new. Kairos is open to everyone interested in learning more about Selah. Kairos meets on Zoom for an hour at 10 AM. Click Here & Now for more info.