Abundant Life Spiritual Center

Doors Are Always Open

Reverend Carol Saunders
Photo by Jonathan's Portraits

“What if you lived and loved without fear? If people knew how truly powerful and amazing they were, their lives would unfold in magnificent ways,” says Spiritual Director and Reverend Carol Saunders, the founder of Abundant Life Spiritual Center, in Deerfield.

She considers the center she started two-and-a-half years ago a way to wake people up and remind them of their divine potential, and their authentic and perfect self—an integral part of the community. Saunders says, “In our Sunday services and classes, we teach that God is love and a presence within, that we are masters of our own lives and here to bring light into the world. We love people as they are and support their spiritual evolution. We profoundly impact lives. The people in our community who apply our teachings to their lives unquestionably experience greater peace, abundance and joy and are able to navigate through life challenges powerfully.”

Starting a spiritual community like this is a dynamic, Spirit-led effort, she adds. “Like any creative endeavor, it can be invigorating and it can be messy. Having a big vision and also loving what is, is a tension that I must constantly embrace.”

Saunders realizes not everyone comes to the center with just one goal in mind. “The weekly church experience and community approach to spirituality go hand-in-hand for us,” she says. “For people who want church, we do that. For people who want community, we are that. Our Sunday celebration service is our main happening. It’s the place where we come together each week as a community and experience the activity and presence of Spirit as a community.”

Saunders says there is more to the center than the walls of the Sunday experience. “Our website is a regularly updated resource. We have spiritual classes, personal development classes and a meditation service. We provide connection and spiritual deepening in small groups, called Spiritual Life Groups. We develop and support spiritual leaders. We extend our ministry through social media and since we don’t own our own building, we often connect in prayer via conference call. People have busy schedules, so if someone is traveling, we might also use Skype, so they can participate in a class.”

Saunders also understands that some people expect their minister to be perfect, or at least seem perfect, but she discourages those expectations, saying, “I don’t put on airs. I am pretty transparent and I show my humanity to people, whether I am teaching a class or leading a Sunday service. The spiritual path is about becoming fully human—exploring and embracing the shadow and being willing to authentically express oneself. I do my best to model that.”

Services: 375 Elm St. For more information, call 847-337-3866, email Carol@AbundantLifeUnity.org or visit AbundantLifeUnity.org. Abundant Life Spiritual Center is affiliated with Unity Worldwide Ministries.

Edit ModuleShow Tags

More from Natural Awakenings

Green Surfing

Ecosia, a German Internet search engine, has planted more than 52 million trees in the last 10 years by diverting its advertising revenue to funding new trees worldwide.

Aqua Breakthrough

Chinese scientists have used ultraviolet light and graphitic carbon nitride to purify two and a half gallons of water in one hour.

Far Out

The outermost region of the Earth’s atmosphere has been newly determined to reach out much farther than the moon.

Baby Balking

The U.S. birthrate has been falling steadily, partly because prospective parents are worried about the increased frequency and intensity of storm, drought and wildfires, as well as about growing geopolitical unrest and resource scarcity.

Revamping Recycling

China, a major importer of recycled waste, is rejecting shipments contaminated by greasy pizza boxes, polyethylene-lined disposable coffee cups, and plastics like yogurt cups and butter tubs.

Add your comment:
Edit ModuleShow Tags

See More »This Month

Lakeview Integrative Medicine Offers Range of Services

Lakeview Integrative Medicine integrates Western medicine with modalities that include acupuncture, nutrition, vitamins, minerals, enzymes, amino acids, bio-identical hormones and homeopathy.

The Challenge of Managing Invasive Species

Many home gardeners unknowingly introduce invasive plants into their backyards when they plant nursery-grown or wild plants into their gardens.

Time to Adopt A Great Lakes Beach

Join volunteers from around the region in the Alliance for the Great Lakes’ annual Adopt-a-Beach Spring Kickoff to remove winter debris and record findings.

Expo Offers Solutions to Gluten and other Allergies

The Chicago Gluten & Allergen Free (GFAF) Expo will take place at the Renaissance Schaumburg Convention Center Hotel, in Schaumburg.

Spring Greening Fair in Skokie

Skokie’s third annual Spring Greening is a free community fair to promote sustainable and green living.

Green Living Designs Collects Recyclable Electronics

Green Living Designs, an environmentally conscious, client-focused design showroom in downtown Highland Park, is accepting consumer products to be responsibly recycled.