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About April

About me? I am a writer, musician, professor and pastor. 

I am most comfortable with spirituality that exists outside of traditional organized structures, but I've served as a pastor in both small and large parish settings, most recently as the Minister for Worship and the Arts at The Riverside Church in the City of New York.

 

I've also spent time as a multi-faith chaplain, and I find meaning in helping people access their own spiritual resources – whatever they may be - and discern the place of the sacred in their own lives.

I also do research. My interests lie at the intersection of spirituality, the arts, and ritual, and my research represents an integration of the many strands of my life, speaking to cultural, religious, theological and musical themes. I've published research in several scholarly journals, co-edited a book about religious trends in America, and my first full-length manuscript, a book about the use of popular music in religious services entitled Secular Music, Sacred Space, was just published by Lexington Books.

I have a Ph.D. in Religion and Culture and currently serve as an affiliate faculty member at The General Theological Seminary in New York City, where I teach classes on pastoral care. I am also doing work with Community and Spiritual Care at QuIPP, a psychology practice in NYC that specializes in providing care for clients who identify on the queer spectrum. I am ordained in the American Baptist tradition, but works closely on a regular basis with The Episcopal Church and with a variety of people across religious lines.

Finally, I am classically trained as a harpist. I earned undergraduate degrees in harp performance and music composition from the University of Maryland. My professional music career is defined, however, by my interest in the Celtic harp, with which I have released 4 albums, 3 of which spent time in the top ten on the World/New Age charts in the United States.

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