Rev. Nicole Merges uses a light-hearted yet deeply spiritual approach to live the principles and practices that Science of Mind teaches. She believes that everyone has a unique gift to give the world, and that by exploring and living a spiritual life, we create a fulfilling and purposeful life for ourselves.
She is an Ordained CSL Minister and is currently the Spiritual Development Education Manager at CSL Home Office.
Her responsibilities include Certificated and Practitioner Education, Spiritual Living Circles, and managing CSL Online Education..
Rabbi Alan serves as the Assistant Rabbi at Spirit of the Desert (Ruach Hamidbar) Synagog in Scottsdale, Arizona, and as the Chair of the North American Interfaith Network (NAIN). He previously chaired Salt Lake Interfaith Roundtable, and Sacred Music Night for the 2015 Parliament of the World’s Religions. He has served as a chaplain at St. Marks hospital and has organized many interfaith music events in our region.
Rabbi Alan is a long-time friend of the Salt Lake Center for Spiritual Living. When he first moved to Utah in 1985, he sought out Science of Mind. He had previously been introduced to New Thought by the Living Enrichment Center while living in Oregon. When he first came to the Salt Lake Center for Spiritual Living (then called the Salt Lake Church of Religious Science) he met Raj Harrous (our audio-visual genius) who became his first friend in Utah and has remained a close friend ever since.
It wasn't long before Alan was serving on the Board Church of Religious Science (CORS). On a humorous note, while on the Board, he made a motion to change the name of CORS to a "Spiritual Living Center." No one supported his motion! Then CORS ended up moving to a location that was the "Center" bookstore. And finally, CORS officially changed its name to the Center for Spiritual Living. So, something was obviously put out there into the universe!
Rabbi Alan's rabbinical journey began 25 years ago when he was called as a musician to perform for a Jewish Renewal Community, Spirit of the Desert, related to his Kabbalah Shekhinah CD.
Rabbi Alan emerges from his rabbinical training with a depth of knowledge and experience in the traditions of Rabbi Zalman Schachter-Shalomi, Rabbi Shlomo Carlebach, Rabbi David Wolfe-blank, Rabbi Sarah Leah Grafstein, and Rabbi Leah Novick.
Music has been part of Rabbi Alan's life since the very beginning. As a baby, he would cry if the radio was not on. While growing up in Rochester, New York, he studied at Eastman School of Music.
Much of the music he currently composes and performs with his band, Desert Wind, includes New Thought principles, especially as elucidated by Ernest Holmes.
He has spoken at "Science of Mind" locations in Nevada, Northern and Southern California, Utah, and Arizona.
In addition to music and spirituality, Rabbi Alan has also expressed his passion for making the world a better place through his study and practice of law.
After earning a BS in Special Education from Syracuse University, at the age of 20 he went on to law school to pursue his interest in the legal rights of disabled people. His first job as an attorney focused on land use and environmental law. He also worked as an Assistant Attorney General for the State of Utah before going into private practice.
He is married to his soulmate, Andalin Shekhinah Bachman. Between the two of them, they have three children and nine grandchildren.
Because of his commitment to personal growth, he is always honored to be among the wonderful, like-minded people at the Center for Spiritual Living.
Robert L Eckman is a native Utahn and has been a part of the Salt Lake Center for Spiritual Living community since 1997.
He learned about Religious Science in 1989 in Huntington Beach, Ca. while managing a hotel that happened to be hosting a Jean Houston seminar at the time.
Educated at Utah State University in Logan, Utah with a degree in Ornamental Horticulture (a fancy name for garden designer), Rob spends most of his free time in his garden near downtown Salt Lake City. He enjoys reading and hiking and anything to do with trains.
He works as the Marketing Manager at The King’s English Bookshop in Salt Lake City, where he is responsible for more than 500 literary events a year.
Rob is married to Steve Mathews, and together they are dads to one very grown-up son and lucky grandfathers to a sweet five-year-old girl.
Sunshine Daye was ordained in 2011 and loves her calling. World traveler and speaker she provides spiritual tools and loving support in an effort to awaken humanity to its magnificence. Feel the love that radiates from her soul.
Randall H. Scott is an author, speaker, mentor, and the founder of Zenpowerment. With a degree in marketing, Randy spent a 25-year corporate career in international sales and marketing, while living in the U.S., Europe, and Asia.
After nearly dying in a motorcycle accident at the age of 33, he realized that he had a second chance to live, so went in search of what really matters in life. His passion for the fusion of science and spirituality led him to compile the principles and tools of Zenpowerment. He's found a way to enjoy more peace, power, and purpose in life, as well as discover authenticity by uncovering who we are not in order to find out who we really are.
Today, Randy is an executive mentor, speaker, and author.
Rev. Linda Brewer was ordained for a Counseling Ministry in 1975 in North Carolina. She founded the Kindred Center there in 1980 with a mission to create a supportive environment in which people together could transform their lives. She was a member of the Unity Church for 19 years before moving to Utah and joining the Center in 2002. She was licensed as a Practitioner in 2007.
She had a full-time ministry for fifteen years as a hospital and hospice Chaplain until she retired in January of 2019. She has been a regular speaker at the Center since retiring and also serves on the Ministry Council.
Chamaigne Sharette discovered the New Thought philosophy in 1999 when she wandered into a little Unity church surrounded by cornfields in Fairfield Iowa. This unusual small town of 10,000 was home to 2000 Transcendental Meditators and many other lesser-known spiritual groups. The Unity church pulpit was shared by the local Rabbi, a Christian Minister, and a Unity Teacher, all of whom had taught and practiced TM for over 30 years. This church was disbanded and a new one formed around Vedic (TM), Mystic Christian, and New Thought ideas.
Chamaigne had been singing professionally since high school, and so was quickly recruited into church music, which became the love of her life. When she moved to Austin, TX to pursue music, she was busy every Sunday as a Special Music guest at various New Thought and Christian churches.
Having been raised a staunch atheist, Chamaigne brought all the fervor of a new convert to her church life, which was authentically and richly interfaith from the beginning. She has taken classes in Judaism, Esoteric Christianity, Science of Mind, Music Ministry and Church Leadership, and has spent a great deal of time reading about Sikhism, Kaballa, Sufism and other traditions. Attempting to map out the "golden threads" that run through them all has been a primary passion in her life, along with creating music-and-spoken-word services in various sacred contexts.
Currently, Chamaigne shares her gifts at the Salt Lake Center for Spiritual Living, serving on the Music Team.
Rev. Myrna Hirst is a long-time friend of the Salt Lake Center which she discovered more than twenty years ago. During her years at the Salt Lake Center she served twice on the Executive Council, as a Practitioner, was involved in many projects, taught many classes, and for a while was the administrator for the Center.
Myrna is currently focused on ways to support the congregation in maintaining a sense of community at a time when hugs and coffee aren’t possible.
She currently coordinates the following Groups:
Rev. Donald Graves is loved and respected for the ways he challenges people to experience their personal magnificence. He loves life, his humor is infectious, his speaking and storytelling captivates, and his interactive facilitation compels those who are willing, to be infinitely greater than they previously thought possible. He published Outing Your Inner Mystic: Unleash Your Life Through Conscious Prayer (available from Amazon) and is working on his next book Graves’ Laws, a collection of one-liners to help all of us keep our thinking straight. Rev Donald and his wife Jan retired to Arizona and are enjoying RV’ing across the US.
Rev. Claire Summerhill
After several full and exciting careers, in insurance claims, as a licensed attorney, and as a college instructor, Rev. Claire Summerhill became an ordained minister with Centers for Spiritual Living in 2019. Since that time, she has filled many roles as a staff minister at Center for Spiritual Living Greater Las Vegas.
Claire’s book, Walking on Water, provides a step-by-step guide for accomplishing things that seem impossible, as it explores the balance and harmony between taking action and waiting in the stillness for possibilities to unfold.
When asked about what’s hers to do, Rev. Claire says: I am called to live simply and with joy, as I discover and share my own unique gifts and talents, and encourage and support others in doing the same. It is my life’s work to awaken, to inspire, and to serve, as we grow together as a human family into a greater experience of our oneness with all that is.
Kamrin Carver first joined the Salt Lake Center for Spiritual Living in 2004. He was a member of the Core Counsel, Youth Leadership Team & served the community as a Practitioner. He now serves a different community as the Owner of a Private Practice & Clinical Director of Mindful Life Recovery Center in North Salt Lake.
Kamrin speaks throughout the country on trauma, addiction and the impact of mental health on traumatized individuals, couples and families.
Kamrin is raising 2 teenagers at home with his oldest son serving our country as a US Marine. In his spare time, Kamrin finds joy in officiating weddings, traveling the world with his family and exploring the many joys of hiking, rock climbing, meditation and yoga.
Rev. Dr. Sydney Lehman Steen is an ordained Religious Science (as well as Interfaith) Minister. Rev. Sydney was Associate Minister at Unity of Portland from 2016 until mid 2020. She was also Music Director at Unity of Portland for more than 12 years. Both her messages and her music are full of vitality, joy, enthusiasm and love. Sydney grew up in New Thought, so her faith has deep roots. Her commitment to spirit and to cultivating the unfoldment of the Divine within ALL people is dynamic and passionate, and inspired her to become an ordained minister of Religious Science and Interfaith traditions. She is a frequent inspirational speaker, spiritual teacher, and dedicated Spiritual Coach.
In the "non-church" world, Sydney is well known as a fierce jazz pianist, keyboardist, composer, and conductor. She has worked with artists ranging from Shirley MacLaine, Dizzy Gillespie, and the Stan Kenton Orchestra, to the Pointer Sisters, Sarah Brightman, Robert Goulet, and even the Oregon Symphony. Additionally, she has spent literally thousands of hours playing keyboard in the orchestra pits of Broadway shows such as: Les Miserable, CATS, Aida, Jesus Christ Superstar, Chicago, Spamalot, Beauty and The Beast, Legally Blonde, Wicked, and Pippin.
Rev. John Cooper works as a staff chaplain at the Huntsman Cancer Institute at the University of Utah. John is a life-long UU who turned to the ministry when a life-altering injury changed his focus after 20 years in the technology industry.
John did his MDiv at Iliff School of Theology in Denver, and studied in Clinical Pastoral Education for 2 residencies at the Pastoral Care Center at St. Mark's Hospital in Salt Lake City and was awarded board-certification as a chaplain by BCCI in 2016.
His interests in Spiritual Care include articulating the efficacy and importance of Spiritual Care to hospital administration and spiritual practices that help with coping and resiliency.
John lives in Salt Lake City with his wife Sutton and their two dogs. John has family scattered all over the east coast and grew up in Ridgewood NJ.
Salina Baugh first discovered the Salt Lake Center for Spiritual Living in 2001 and jumped in with both feet, taking classes and volunteering. Both of these activities grounded her in the philosophy and built sustaining friendships. In 2007 Salina licensed as a Practitioner and has been of service to the Center in many capacities.
Currently, Salina is focusing her attention on teaching classes and one-on-one spiritual coaching. Salina loves sharing her personal insights and why she believes the application of this philosophy is not only relevant today, but if applied daily will change lives.
Reverend Jan Ewing, minister, practitioner, teacher, forever-student of this teaching, has served this spiritual community for many years and sees it as a continual learning platform to express greater life and happiness.
Her goal is to bring a true recognition of the Divine in every single person she meets or any situation or condition they may find themselves in.
Attending a graduate program at what was then known as the Ernest Holmes School of Ministry, she spent several years serving the Salt Lake Center for Spiritual Living in several different capacities. After completing Clinical Pastoral Education at St. Mark’s hospital, she also served the greater Salt Lake community as a hospice and hospital chaplain.
She participated as an early member of the Interfaith Roundtable; bringing leaders of all different faiths together to find common ground to work together to serve the greater good.
Reverend Jan feels she is most fortunate to have walked hand-in-hand with so many brave, wonderful people through their most significant joyful and challenging life events.