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In celebration of the 30th Anniversary of the Spiritual Searcher program,
we are pleased to announce our 2019 Spiritual Searchers!

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Carrie Newcomer and Parker Palmer
with pianist, Gary Walters

April 27, 2019  7 PM

What We Need is Here: Hope, Hard Times and the Human Possibility

Presented by:
The Burkhart Center
With support from the Shalem Institute Midwest Region

For more information and to register click HERE.

Venue Location

This event will be held at our South Campus location in the Grandview Area:
1320 Cambridge Blvd. Columbus, OH 43212


We live in hard times, and hope is sometimes hard to come by. But by faith and the evidence of our own eyes, we know that “what we need is here” (to steal a line from Wendell Berry). It’s our hope that the words, music, and conversation we share during this evening together will reinforce that hope in all of us.

And where, exactly, is what we need to help birth a better world? It’s within us in the human heart and between us in community. We need only to open our eyes, see the secrets hidden in plain sight, reach in and reach out, and liberate the better angels of our nature. 

In a time when it’s easy to feel overwhelmed, discouraged or cynical, Carrie, Parker, and Gary offer a journey of mind and spirit characterized by thoughtfulness, realism, vulnerability, good humor and hope.

Parker Palmer is a Quaker elder, writer, educator, activist, contributor to the popular On Being Project with Krista Tippett and founder of the Center for Courage and Renewal. His focus is on issues in education, community, leadership, spirituality and social change. He is the author of ten books including Let Your Life Speak, Healing the Heart of Democracy and his latest book, On the Brink of Everything: Grace, Gravity and Getting Old, was published in June. Parker Palmer is a former Spiritual Searcher. You can learn more about Parker here.

Carrie Newcomer is a songwriter, recording artist, performer and educator. The Dallas Morning News said, “she’s the kind of artist whose music makes you stop, think and then say, ‘that is so true.’ ” Newcomer is a contemplative Quaker who uses her creative art-form as a spiritual/mindfulness practice. She has emerged as a prominent voice for progressive spirituality, social and environmental justice, interfaith dialogue and as a champion of a new political conversation. A gifted artist in her own right, she has recently appeared with Parker Palmer in events of music and spoken word as they both seek to change the political conversation. You can learn more about Carrie here.

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 It’s not too late to still make a donation to the Spiritual Searcher Fundraiser.

Our deepest thanks to all who have donated so far!

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Past Spiritual Searchers hosted by First Community Church

Thomas Moore
Thomas Moore
November 2018
Glennon Doyle
Glennon Doyle
August 2017











Piper Kerman
Piper Kerman
December 1, 2016
Nancy Abrams
Nancy Abrams
November 2016
Marcus Borg
Marcus Borg
2004, 2011








Center page headshots

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The Burkhart Center
and the Spiritual Searcher Program
are grateful for your support

Dear Friends,

We deeply appreciate the generosity of our donors. Financial sustainability remains core to the success of The Burkhart Center. Because of your generosity, we are able to continue to offer excellent programming and world-class speakers you have come to know as a hallmark of the Spiritual Searcher program.

Your comments and questions are always welcome.
Feel free to reach out to us via The Burkhart Center Program Administrator, Christy Caine at ccaine@fcchurch.com.

Peace and Blessings,

The Burkhart Center Steering Committee:
Rev. David Hett, Minister of Religious Life & Learning
Price Finley, Chair of the Burkhart Center Steering Committee
Tom White, Chair, Spiritual Searcher Committee
David Nickel, Chair, Adult Learning Council
Christy Caine, Program Administrator, The Burkhart Center
Lisa Bueche, Abbey Jo Griffith, Shah Hasan, Rose Konrath, David Quellette, Peggy Wible

About The Burkhart Center

The Burkhart Center builds on the Foundation of the Spiritual Searcher ministry. The Center, a vision of First Community Church, creates sacred space to explore the mind-body-spirit connection and interspiritual practices for the healing of soul and creation. The Burkhart Center curates programs and opportunities for meaningful personal and community growth. For more about The Burkhart Center, please visit our website.

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Photos from past events

(Photos by Charles Baldeck)

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For more on the Spiritual Searcher Committee, follow this link.

Questions?  Email Christy at ccaine@fcchurch.com

or call (614) 488-0681 ext. 247