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Religion

Gathering seeks to unite the spiritual

The Sacred Path Gathering will feature more than 70 exhibitors, including artists, shamans and massage therapists.

By ELIZABETH MILLER
Published October 22, 2004

Whether you're seeking spiritual enlightenment or simply a break from the mundane, you can look for it at the Sacred Path Gathering on Sunday at the Wyndham Westshore Hotel. The event, featuring Los Angeles author Lynn V. Andrews, unites artists and practitioners of the holistic or sublime.

The gathering will include more than 70 artists, craftsmen, holistic practitioners, massage therapists, chiropractors, shamans, spirit-guide readers and musicians.

"It's going to be so eclectic," said event coordinator Mary Kirkconnell. "It's like a Renaissance festival meets powwow and craft fair."

Well-known in the New Age community, Andrews has written a series of books about her spiritual journey, including Wise Woman, Medicine Woman and Crystal Woman. She will speak about the power of love and shifting into a healthy mindset.

For Kirkconnell, the event and Andrews' participation mark the culmination of her life's efforts. A painter, musician and business owner, Kirkconnell draws from a deep sense of spirituality.

"Medicine Woman is the first book that got me started on my spiritual journey - I connected with it on a deep level. Before I read that, I never knew there were other people who thought the same way I did," said Kirkconnell, who lives in Carrollwood.

Kirkconnell owns Peace Tree Trading, a gift shop at 6009 N Armenia Ave., which offers original art, crafts and music by local artists, and American Indian merchandise. Prior to opening her store, Kirkconnell was a corporate trainer. When she lost her job during a company downsizing, she had to do some soul-searching to figure out what to do with her life, she said.

Spirituality is the common thread among exhibitors at the Sacred Path Gathering, which takes place on United Nations Day. It seeks to give local artists and holistic practitioners who don't have a venue an opportunity to showcase their talents, Kirkconnell said. She also hopes it will unite alternative, small-business owners like herself.

"The purpose of the Sacred Path Gathering is to honor the sacred paths of all nations," she said. "We may all follow a different path to get to God or our creator, or a sense of spirituality, but we are headed in the same direction."

If you go

The Sacred Path Gathering is from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Sunday at the Wyndham Westshore Hotel, 4860 W Kennedy Blvd. Admission is $5. Tickets to author Lynn V. Andrews' presentation are $45 in advance or $50 at the door. She will have a book signing on Saturday at Peace Tree Trading. Call 879-8733.

[Last modified October 21, 2004, 13:22:09]

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