OneSpirit Teaching Faculty

OneSpirit Tutors comprise a devoted, accomplished, and varied collective, collaborating to form a supportive learning community for one another. They persistently focus on the internal and external aspects necessitated by the curriculum. The Faculty’s efforts are enriched, held accountable, and secured through the diligent supervision of our commitment to heed OneSpirit’s guidance—both internally and via engagement with fellow professionals in associated domains.

Nicola Coombe

Advisory & Core Tutor

Nicola’s work is deeply influenced by her experience of being both South African and British, and these diverse cultural, political, spiritual, and natural landscapes. Her underlying impulse has always been to seek a connection with that which underpins Life and makes it Sacred.

She has degrees in Social Work; in Psychology and English; and an MBA, in which her thesis explored the inner process of change. Nicola’s work has included key roles in Life Line in South Africa; directing a development programme for black and women executives at the University of Cape Town’s business school (AIM); strategy and leadership development within Gemini Consulting; and campaigning for the ordination of women in the Anglican Church in South Africa. She worked in strategic development within the Findhorn Foundation in Scotland, where she is now a trustee. Based in London and married with one son, Nicola was ordained in 2004. She has been a OneSpirit tutor since 2005, was for most of that time Seminary Leader up to 2015, and then served as Focaliser of OneSpirit Interfaith Foundation up to November 2017.

Annie Heppenstall

Core Tutor

A prolific writer, Annie has published ten books and many articles, reflections and liturgies, among which The Book of Uncommon Prayer (2015) captures the range of her inspirations most fully. Its subtitle reads: ‘Liturgies and Prayers exploring inclusive language and biblical imagery of the Feminine Divine and the natural world’. Her degree and MA from Cambridge University, in Theology and Religious Studies, focused on “the beautiful, mystical core” in the sacred wisdom of different faith cultures.

Annie’s lifelong love of nature led her to study and be initiated as a druid with the Order of Bards, Ovates and Druids, for whom she continues to mentor trainee druids. Her passion for experiential spirituality and for the heart-felt soul-connection of humanity has led her over the last three decades, into deep and extended explorations of the faith paths of the world alongside practitioner-friends, including sharing in the peace of a Buddhist Sangha, the warmth of welcome into neighbourhood Islamic communities, and into an elected leadership role in a Franciscan Christian contemplative Order. Annie is an experienced Spiritual Accompanier /Coach and since 2014, has also been a spiritual care practitioner with an NHS interfaith mental health team, for the last five of these as the chaplain and manager of a therapeutic community garden project. With a professional background in education, a side-line in mural painting and a heart for social justice and sacred activism, Annie has lived for 30 years in the culturally diverse inner cities of Yorkshire and the English Midlands. She joined OneSpirit in 2016 and was ordained with OneSpirit in 2018.

Dawn Russell

Core Tutor

Dawn’s greatest passion is to be part of the human experience that unfolds when we come together in a heart space to achieve something for the greater good of all. She started her working life in therapeutic communities and worked with many aspects of psychotherapeutic practices such as art therapy, psychodrama and group dynamics.

After many years of exploring earth-based spirituality and healing practices (often under the umbrella name of shamanism) she became co-director of Eagle’s Wing College of Contemporary Shamanism, and co-founder of both Celebrating Woman, and Medicine Woman, Medicine Ways. Over the last 20 years, Dawn has been offering one-year courses and short courses in healing, earth connection and practitioner training. She has also developed a one-to-one practice offering many lenses to help people know, love, heal and accept themselves, and in turn to know themselves as part of the Divine, Great Mystery of life. Dawn was ordained with OneSpirit in 2018.

Una Devine

Group Tutor

Una has worked as an Occupational Therapist and mental health service manager for over 3 decades in Ireland and London. She is a qualified Gestalt psychotherapist who believes that allowing vulnerability in a safe situation will lead us towards experiencing sacred support. She has trained in Family Constellation work. She was ordained as a OneSpirit Interfaith minister in 2017.

Joining the OneSpirit Interfaith family has demonstrated her sacred support as a felt experience through the practice of spiritual counselling, ceremony and joint endeavour. Another beautiful lesson for Una on the Interfaith course was the use of creativity as an expression of our spirituality. Una has a fine art degree and has had her paintings in a number of exhibitions, she plays music and writes. Una lives in Spain on an avocado farm. She uses her garden for conducting ceremonies and is learning to grow food and speak Spanish.

Sarah MacDonald

Group Tutor

Sarah was fortunate to encounter T’ai Chi aged just 16 and she’s been practising ever since. T’ai Chi led to Qigong, a related Taoist practice which includes meditation, healing, creativity and spiritual development. She is now a respected teacher of the Hua Gong style. Wishing to find stronger means of embodying the benefits of her practise in the world, she joined OneSpirit and was ordained in 2014.

She served as a mentor for the class of 2017. The healing practise led her to explore health in all its forms and she holds an MA in Health Education. She has worked extensively in the voluntary sector, supporting people with addictions, mental health issues, homelessness and a history of offending before joining the Bristol Cancer Help Centre in 2003. She is now responsible for developing psycho-spiritual education programmes for people with cancer, and for training and accrediting facilitators to run them. She has an abiding interest in holistic health and healing, a strong call to sacred activism and an abiding love of the wild. She lives in Bristol with her husband and 3 teenagers.

Linda Dunbar

Group Tutor

Linda has spent many decades working in the religious and spiritual fields. It was a growing interest in spiritual curiosity and myths which saw her move away from organised religion and begin her training with OneSpirit, being ordained in 2020, Linda’s great passion is for adult education, especially around spirituality and well-being.

As well as being a group tutor in the faculty, Linda is also the national Spiritual Care Practice Educator for NHS Scotland, responsible for the training and education of Health and Social Care Chaplains. Linda is also a senior accredited supervisor with the Association of Pastoral Supervisors and Educators. She lives in rural Midlothian where she relishes the outdoors and pursues her Animist spiritual pathway.

Monica Douglas

Group Tutor

Monica shares her time between Birmingham and Barbados. She shares her ministry online through The Wild Wisdom Sanctuary, Wild Wisdom Oracle Cards, Wild Wisdom Groove and Ritual and offline through retreats, ceremonies and workshops.

In her daily work, she is a love alchemist and certified relationship coach who helps courageous souls to heal their hearts and love again after break up, separation or divorce. She delivers this work through love and relationship coaching in groups and 1:1 as well as the Delightful Her personal passions are barefoot walking, yoga, singing, dancing, goat whispering and eating raw chocolate.

Christopher Marcus

Guest Tutor

Christopher’s ministry is built on the foundation of 34 years of being involved as a director and teacher in Spiritual Theatre, based on the teachings of Rudolf Steiner, working through the Mystery of the Spoken Word. This led him to the borders of what can be called entertainment, and to the core question of what it means to be one’s True Self. Going through the portal of ordination as a OneSpirit interfaith minister in 2007 was the answer to his search for authenticity.

Since then he has used the discipline of Spiritual Counselling to help others come closer to their True Self. A OneSpirit tutor since 2009, Christopher sees the training process as offering a container for deepening one’s relation to The Divine through ritual and ceremony as well as nurturing the wonder of human interaction in the intense group work offered by the curriculum. Christopher is married with three children and lives in East Sussex.

Visiting Speakers

We also draw on a richly talented panel of visiting speakers to share their specialist expertise, for example about the different faith paths.

Buddhism – Claire Genkai Breeze; Nicholas S. Kientsch, Evolving Minds

Chinese Cosmology – Simon Carey-Morgan

Christianity – Rev Peter Owen JonesRev Ray Gaston, Interfaith Studies tutor for The Queen’s Foundation, Birmingham; Gillian Paschkes-Bell; Rev Cathy Mark.

Judaism – Rabbi Debbie Young-Somers, West London Synagogue; Charlie Buchanan

Hinduism – Swami Surya, Skanda Vale Temple

Islam – Halima Gosai Hussein, chair of the Inclusive Mosque initiative; Dilwar Hussain

Modern teachings – Tineke BracknallAdele Napier, Findhorn Foundation