Everyone can use a little extra support in handling life’s challenges—and one way to get it is through talking with a professional. Seeking the support of a counselor or therapist is so valuable, especially when you find yourself dealing with stress or difficulties. But how do you find someone you can trust with your innermost thoughts and feelings?
We would like to suggest the following members of our Unification community who are trained and experienced counselors/therapist.
A description of each counselor or therapist’s unique skills and experience and contact info are listed below. They have each agreed to offer a discounted rate to Unificationsists, and you will need to work that out with them when you contact them. You can then decide together if you are the “right fit”, how you will communicate, and how often.
Looking for additional professional marriage support you can trust? Visit The National Registry of Marriage-Friendly Therapists.
“My years at the National BFM have given me so many wonderful opportunities teaching, training, counseling and coaching our members. I’ve been able to help many people prepare for and begin their Marriage Blessing relationships with confidence and ownership, facilitated important conversations between parents and their young adult children, and when needed, helped people end their Blessings with their faith and dignity intact.
I feel these experiences have uniquely qualified me to help members in their marriage and family challenges and transitions, while always honoring and including our unique culture and faith in the process.
I am very comfortable coaching by phone or by SKYPE. I am particularly motivated to work with couples of all ages, and with young adults. I’d also love to visit your District or local area to provide support and education. Please check out my website at http://degreesinlove.org or email me at email@example.com.
One Day Marriage Enrichment Seminar:
I can tailor a seminar to meet the unique needs of your congregation, whether they are empty-nesters, newlyweds, somewhere in the middle or all of these! Some of the topics I present include basic communication skills, combining faith traditions, the art of forgiveness, and handling expectations. I teach practical skills with a spiritual perspective, with lots of opportunities for couples to learn and grow together.
Full Service Weekend:
I can visit your area and teach a one-day marriage workshop suitable for both members and contacts — great program for outreach! I can train your ministry staff, and talk about preparation for matching and Blessing to your Youth and YA Ministry. I can even give a sermon on Sunday morning!”
John & Sandra Lowen
About John & Sandra
John Lowen, BA, MSW, LCSW is a forensic and psychiatric social worker. Following his graduation in 1988 from the Hunter Graduate School of Social Work, he studied at the Nathan Ackerman Institute for the Family, a training institute for couples and family therapy. He is credentialed to work with people who have had difficulties with relational issues, including inappropriate sexual behaviors and domestic violence. He is an award-winning filmmaker who has been using videography as a therapeutic tool with his clients for over twenty-five years.
Sandra Lowen, BS/BA, MS, LCSW, PhD is credentialed in Child, Adolescent, and Marriage and Family Therapy, as well as Trauma Therapy, Sexual Therapy and Suicidology, through New York State, the Children’s Trauma Institute and the Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing International Association (EMDRIA). Dr. Lowen graduated in 1990 from the Columbia University School of Social Work with an MS in Social Work, has credentials in post-master’s studies and has since obtained a PhD in English and Creative Writing from Columbus University. She has worked as a credentialed School Social Work Specialist and has worked as an adjunct milieu member to school boards throughout the country. An author and college professor, she creates learning materials for individuals and groups, schools and psychiatric outpatient groups, as well as training materials for school and organization staff.
The Lowens have practiced as a therapeutic team under the Marriage and Family Institute, founded by Rev. David S.C. Kim, a licensed marriage and family counselor, and worked under his tutelage for many years. They have presented seminars throughout the US for church and community groups for more than a decade. The Lowens are available for week-long intensive couple and family therapeutic interventions that include multiple modalities.
John and Sandra Lowen are an 1800 Couple. They have one son who was Blessed in 1999 and lives in Washington State with his wife and two sons.
“You are incarnating to experience life patterns that will bring out the parts of you that don’t know God yet.” CAROLYN MYSS
Patricia Detlefsen graduated with a Master’s and a D.E.S.S. (diplome d’Etudes Superieures Specialisees) in Clinical Psychology and Psychopathology in France where she practiced as a psychologist.
Since arriving in the U.S. in 1981, Patricia completed two years of religious education at the Unification Theological Seminary before she started exploring new healing modalities. In New York, she studied with Dr. John Pierrakos, the founder of Core Energetics. She developed her own practice in Manhattan and in 1985, she moved to California where she started the Shimjung Healing Center. To refine her skills, Patricia was led to study Hypnotherapy at the Hypnotherapy Training Institute in Santa Rosa and attended the Barbara Brennan School of Healing. She became a certified Jin Shin Jyutsu practitioner in 2007. Since 2011, she has been studying the ancient art of Chi Gong with Master Mingtong Gu and has become an avid practitioner.
Patricia lives in Valley Springs, CA. She actively conducts counseling sessions in her Castro Valley office and via the phone for clients across the United States.
She was Blessed in 1982 to Dr. George Detlefsen. They raised two wonderful sons, Nathanael and Shinghi. Dr. George passed away in 2005. Shinghi was blessed in 2010 to Junghwa Chung.
What is unique about the Shimjung Healing Center?
Patricia provides individuals with a very unique approach regarding healing. Her practice has unfolded throughout the years. In many ways it reflects her own personal journey of healing that is deeply intertwined with her life of faith. In her own words:
“From my perspective, healing is about our journey back to our Heavenly Parent. Each of us has been given a unique path in life that comes with a specific set of challenges. These challenges might have all different flavors yet in essence they are the same. They are given to all of us in order to grow our heart so that we can learn to resonate with True Love. Personal crises or struggles bring into the light the parts of ourselves that need healing. They are absolutely part of the deal. These are not something to be ashamed of or to run away from while pretending that everything is fine when deep inside, we are “bleeding”.
In essence, our journey of life today, more than ever, has to do with our inner task which aims at aligning ourselves with the ideal. This ideal is the original blueprint that True Parents have substantiated for the first time on earth. This alignment does not take place automatically.To take place, it requires faith: Faith in the ultimate destination of True Love. It also requires an understanding that in order to get there, we’ll have to embrace the enemy within who is still caught up in the archangelic realm of resentment.
This task is impossible without investing in our relationship with our True Parents in order to open ourselves to the realm of grace which They have ushered into this world. Because of True Parents, the whole realm of healing is now wide open – the energy of grace is there to propel us forward and to empower us in order to resolve the issues that have plagued humanity since the fall. Without grace, we have no power to face and transform ourselves and no power to shed the many layers of fallen nature inherited from our lineages. Without grace, we have no power to uncover all of the unresolved emotions that we buried in order to survive an imperfect world. It’s only through the power of grace that we can reclaim our hearts and reach our utmost potential as True Parents’ children.
How do we tap into this energy of grace and mobilize it for healing? How do we navigate through our emotional turmoil and come to realize that it has keys to unlock our greatness? These are important concerns that have to be addressed with the support of a guide, a mentor, and someone who has the expertise of heart and knowledge. At this time in history, while our Heavenly Parent has provided us with the truth to penetrate and explore the territory of the fall as well as that of the ideal, I do believe that various healing modalities such as psychology have emerged to help substantiate God’s ideal. For 33 years now, I have worked on integrating these modalities in my practice. I have guided and mentored individuals and couples from all ages who struggle with all kinds of issues: from lack of sense of identity and purpose, depression, addictions, challenges in the blessing, to broken blessings, etc . Many of them have been able to find and stretch their wings to lead a more fulfilled and happy life.
For me, counseling comes with a serious commitment. No matter how long it takes and no matter how many obstacles might appear, I commit to being the best instrument that I can be in order to empower others to find their way back home to their unique divine core. I also believe that the work of helping someone resolve their relationship with their enemy, often the spouse, can be claimed to support the recreation of the world that True Parents are so longing to see.”
What will your experience be like as a client?
Week after week, you’ll learn to look at your life from a larger perspective and discover that your life circumstances have a deeper meaning. You’ll be given tools to confidently navigate through the challenges you encounter. You’ll learn to tap into a higher power to subjugate the parts of you that are still living in darkness and ignorance. You’ll learn to find “jewels”, that is critical insights about yourself, in the midst of the most challenging situations. You’ll learn to transform crises into opportunities, opportunities to grow and to reclaim your heart. You’ll grow your ability to love and forgive others. You’ll learn to surrender to True Love. Your “enemies” will become your teachers. In essence, you’ll learn to resonate with Heavenly Parent’s heart and become His/Her instrument.
Debbie has a passion for helping people have loving, lasting marriages. Having grown up in a broken home, she understands the pain that couples feel when their marriages are struggling or fail, and the suffering their children experience as well. Yet she also knows the tremendous blessings of a loving, happy marriage. Debbie and her husband, Rob, an astrophysicist, have been happily married for over 34 years.
Debbie has a Masters Degree in Counseling, is a licensed counselor and has been trained by experts in the field of marriage education. She has a private practice where she regularly works with couples as well as with individuals, in cases where one spouse is reluctant or resistant to working on the marriage.
Debbie’s approach in helping couples is different from traditional marriage counseling in that it focuses on action plans rather than on talking about problems. She believes that most couples go into their marriages without a basic understanding of how relationships work. Therefore, her focus is on education and on helping couples to implement healthy behaviors and interactions, while eliminating unhealthy ones. Because of her approach, most couples begin to see improvement in their relationships within a relatively short amount of time.
“You are probably reluctant and even embarrassed to seek some help. But all of us face situations that are beyond our experience now and then.
“It is easy for all of us to get into unhappy ruts in our marriage—recurring disagreements, loss of connection, boring routines. Or get overwhelmed by a crisis—with the kids, money, sex—that we are just unprepared for.
“Having someone from outside to talk to can make a big difference, often faster than you could imagine.
“My approach is one of coaching first, that is, looking for and building on your natural strengths as a couple. What’s working well? How can we apply that to what’s tripping you up? We will explore practical insights and steps to help you find your answers quickly.
“And I can just coach you alone, if your spouse is reluctant to get help.
“In any case, I often coach each spouse individually as well as work with you together. Most couples find the solutions they seek within three to five sessions.
“If deeper issues are involved, my training as a counselor kicks in and I can either work with one of you to help heal old wounds or misconceptions that are getting in the way, or advise you about seeking additional help.
“Marriage is meant to change us and make us grow and mature. The challenges you now face may well be coming up to help you correct unhelpful patterns of behavior and highlight personal issues that need attention. We’ll tackle them together.
“With enough acceptance, support and fresh ways of looking at things—along with God’s constant care—I believe your couple can get closer and stronger.
“But I also understand from personal experience how marital roadblocks can be discouraging–compounded by guilt and shame over even having the problem!
“I also know how hard it can be to reach out. Don’t worry—whatever it is, you are not alone and I have heard it before. I’ll make it easy for you to share.”
John is a licensed Mental Health Counselor and has a Masters in Marriage and Family Counseling. He is also the founding director of the Blessed Marriage Project that sponsors marriage enrichment retreats for Blessed couples, and the Resident Counselor at High Noon, a grassroots Unificationist initiative for pornography education and recovery.
John graduated from the Seminary and helped author a Unification Principle lecture series used worldwide. He is also the co-author of Educating for True Love: Explaining Sun Myung Moon’s Teaching on Morality, Family and Society (2006). John has helped develop Blessing preparation and education programs over the last 20 years. He and his wife, Cathy, are a 2075 couple and live in New Jersey. They have a Blessed daughter.