The Allender Center Podcast

How did we get here? In our divided nation - and in our fragmenting churches - fear and hatred are running rampant. 

This week, Dan Allender speaks with Pete Wehner, who is an in-residence Senior Fellow at The Trinity Forum, an author, and a contributor to publications such as the New York Times and The Atlantic. 

Their conversation is an invitation to those of us within the body of Christ to consider the factors that influence our own stories, our faith, our political views, and our relationships with others.

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How did we get here? In our divided nation - and in our fragmenting churches - fear and hatred are running rampant. 

This week, Dan Allender speaks with Pete Wehner, who is an in-residence Senior Fellow at The Trinity Forum, an author, and a contributor to publications such as the New York Times and The Atlantic. Their conversation is an invitation to those of us within the body of Christ to consider the factors that influence our own stories, our faith, our political views, and our relationships with others.

Direct download: TAC436-Edited.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 6:00am PDT

We’re continuing with the second part of the conversation with Cole Arthur Riley, author of “This Here Flesh,” co-hosted by Rachael Clinton Chen and Linda Royster from The Allender Center. We’ll drop back into the discussion as Rachael asks Cole about the ways she has encountered God in the midst of encountering the trauma and horrors of her own story.

If you missed the first part, you can go to the previous episode entitled, "This Here Flesh with Cole Arthur Riley, Part 1" to hear Cole speak about the impact of her family of origin on her life.

Direct download: TAC_435.mp3
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Rachael Clinton Chen is joined by Linda Royster from The Allender Center as they co-host this conversation with a very special guest. Cole Arthur Riley is the creator of Black Liturgies, a space for Black spiritual words of liberation, lament, rage, and rest; and a project of The Center for Dignity and Contemplation where she serves as Executive Curator. She is the author of the New York Times best selling book, This Here Flesh.

In the first part of this conversation, Cole talks about the impact of her family of origin and how she came to tell her story. Be sure to stay tuned for the conclusion of this conversation in next week’s podcast episode, in which Cole will share how her story led her to a new understanding of the Divine.

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In this week’s episode, Dan Allender speaks with one of the driving forces behind The Allender Center: Kalee Vandergrift Porter, the Director of Business Development. Kalee shares her journey of being drawn to chaos, grappling with the expectations put onto her growing up, and discovering her own voice in her story.

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In this episode, Dan Allender interviews his boss, Jeanette White, who is the Executive Director of The Allender Center. You will get to hear some of the themes of Jeanette’s story, from her work in trauma care with The Allender Center to her personal encounters with trauma.

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If you’ve just started following the Allender Center, or even if you’ve been around for a while, you may know us as an organization that holds space for healing from trauma and abuse. You may wonder why we place so much emphasis on story.

This continued interview of Dan Allender by his co-host, Rachael Clinton Chen, reveals the history of the inception of the Allender Center, why story is at the core of our work, and the reason we believe each of our stories are the key to discovering real meaning and connection to ourselves, to God, and to others.

Direct download: TAC431-Edited.mp3
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In the first of this two-part series, Rachael Clinton Chen interviews Dan Allender about the origins of his work in helping people address and heal sexual abuse. You’ll drop into Dan’s story in the mid-1980s as he was finishing his doctoral studies. He was asked a question by one of his clients: “What do you know about sexual abuse?”

At the time, this very prevalent issue was not being addressed in secular culture, let alone by the church. Listen to how Dan grew into his unique role as a therapist, teacher, and innovative leader to help bring healing and transformation to those who have suffered harm and abuse.

Please note this does discuss the sensitive topic of sexual abuse and may not be suitable for some listeners.

Direct download: TAC430_Edited.mp3
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As we continue our discussion about spiritual abuse, this week we’re looking at its impacts and how we can begin to move towards healing.

If this is a subject you’d like to continue to explore, or if you’d like to share this material with a loved one, we have a list of more articles, podcasts, and online learning opportunities in the show notes of today’s episode.

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We recently re-released the recording of the Confronting Spiritual Abuse webinar led by Rachael Clinton Chen, so we’re also revisiting the topic of spiritual abuse here on the podcast. This week, Dan Allender interviews Rachael Clinton Chen about her experiences with spiritual abuse, how she started teaching on this topic, and how people can identify spiritually abusive people and systems that they encounter.

We invite you to stay tuned for the second part of this conversation next week. If you’d like to go deeper into this topic, consider enrolling in the “Confronting Spiritual Abuse Re-Release.” This is a full day of teaching from Rachael Clinton Chen that you may go through at your own pace. 

We offer this information not only to expose the harm, but because we believe that healing is possible. By doing this work, you can begin to reclaim spiritual beliefs and practices and reconnect with God and others in a deeper way.

Direct download: TAC428_Spiritual_Abuse_1-Export01.mp3
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Dan and Rachael continue their conversation from last week about post-traumatic stress. Once we identify and acknowledge it, how do we offer care for ourselves and those around us?

We hope this conversation inspires you to  contemplate some of the simple self-care practices and rituals you can implement in your own life, and the ways in which you can tend to yourself and others with mercy and care.

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Discussing the topic of post-traumatic stress can feel particularly overwhelming because so many of us are currently in a state of ongoing post-traumatic stress. Dan and Rachael approach this conversation feeling weary, yet determined to unpack the impacts of PTSD so that we all might have more awareness, understanding, and grace for ourselves and those around us. We especially acknowledge the leaders and helpers - healthcare workers, teachers, parents, friends, and family members helping loved ones.

Direct download: TAC426_PTSD.mp3
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As we approach Easter, Dan and Rachael consider the resurrection and the promise it holds for our own stories. The resurrection is not meant to dismiss suffering, but to give us hope that there is something on the other side of our suffering.
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In this continued conversation on what it means to be wholehearted, Dan and Rachael ask one another - and you, dear listeners - to reflect on moments of wholeheartedness in our lives. These are the times when we are most present, most connected, and most alive. These are also the times when we can glimpse the fullness and glory of God.

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What do you understand wholeheartedness to be? It often feels like an unattainable state, especially in this fallen world. 

In this conversation, Dan Allender and Rachael Clinton Chen break down their experiences with becoming more wholehearted: the desire for its joy, the shame that often prevents us from embracing it, and the simple practices in which we can have an embodied, intentional movement toward Shalom.

Direct download: TAC423_Wholeheartedness.mp3
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In the third and final episode of our Sexual Abuse series, Dan and Rachael are joined by theologian Dr. Chelle Stearns. They discuss a difficult, and often controversial, topic of the ways in which Jesus fully took on humanity with all of its vulnerability, humiliation, and shame in order to suffer with us in those dark places and then bring redemption to them.

Please note: This is a sensitive topic and you may want to use discretion if you are listening with younger listeners.

Direct download: TAC422_Jesus-Final_01.mp3
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In the second episode of our series about sexual abuse, Dan and Rachael are joined by Linda Royster, licensed therapist and teaching staff at The Allender Center. 

Linda defines supremacy and the misuse of power as it relates to sexual abuse, violence, and racism, and how it is in direct opposition to true Shalom.

Direct download: TAC421-Supremacy-Final.mp3
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Many of us encounter pornography at some point in our lives - often, our first exposure is during adolescence. Whether we encountered pornography intentionally or not, it is a form of sexual abuse that can lead to shame and a distorted view of our own desire. In an effort to stop living at war with our desire, and to redeem it, we need to understand our own sexual abuse stories.

This week, we’re joined by Jay Stringer, a licensed mental health counselor, ordained minister, and author of the award-winning book “Unwanted: How Sexual Brokenness Reveals Our Way to Healing.” @jay_stringer_’s passion is to equip the church with resources to change the conversation on sexual brokenness. He shares with us some stories that can help us examine our own stories as we move towards redemption.

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We were honored to sit down for a conversation with Ian Morgan Cron, best-selling author and renowned Enneagram authority. 

In this conversation hosted by Dan and Rachael, @ianmorgancron shares how to use the Enneagram to push past old, stale stories and unlock inner power for both spiritual and personal growth. 

In this episode, you’ll gain new insight about how to rewrite broken narratives and step into becoming your authentic self.

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Are you ever officially “done” parenting your child when they become an adult? Listen to this insightful and playful conversation between this week’s guest, Amanda Christian, and her dad - Dr. Dan Allender.

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As an adult child, you have a very different relationship with your parents than you did in your youth. If we are given the privilege of having a relationship with our parents as they age, how does that relationship evolve in order for us to engage with them and care for them? 

Listen as Dan Allender and Rachael Clinton Chen speak from their generational perspectives about the relationship between adult children and their parents throughout the aging process.

Direct download: TAC417-Final.mp3
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We have all experienced some degree of trauma in our lives. If you’re married or partnered, you need to have a trauma informed partnership to be mindful of how our trauma stories and narratives impact our relationship.

In this episode, Dr. Dan Allender and Becky Allender are joined by Dr. Steve Call and Lisa Call to share their experiences in addressing personal trauma in the context of marriage.

Direct download: TAC416-Marriage.mp3
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Many of us live in these “false Edens,” a space of being blissfully unaware that there is pain, heartache, and trauma which we must confront. When we consciously choose to engage our own stories and deconstruct these “false Edens” in which we’re living, we can move more freely into our calling to find true redemption on the other side.

Who better than to discuss this with us than this week’s podcast guest, Cary Umhau? Author, speaker, activist, and advocate for those facing homelessness and hunger, Cary knows what it is to step out of the constructs of

her life into living what she calls a “spacious life.” 

Listen as Dan Allender and Cathy Loerzel, co-authors of “Redeeming Heartache,” speak with Cary Umhau, author of “Burning Down the Fireproof Hotel” and find parallels between their work and their stories.

Direct download: TAC_415_Story_2-commercial.mp3
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This week, Cathy Loerzel is our impromptu host as she facilitates a conversation between Dan Allender and his friend of nearly five decades, Scotty Smith, a pastor, writer, and consultant. You’ll get to listen in on how we can engage our stories as we age and how we can share those stories with others over the years.

 

This conversation might make you feel like you’re sitting around a cozy table with close friends; we hope you enjoy it.

Direct download: TAC414-StoryEngagementRH1-Final.mp3
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During stressful seasons, taking a moment to care for yourself can help your body respond to the stress and find grounding. 

What does “grounding” mean? It’s engaging in practices that bring you back to your body and refocuses your thoughts when you may be experiencing the effects of stress, anxiety, or trauma.

Join Jeanette White, the Executive Director of the Allender Center, and Rachel Sanchez, the Manager of the Resilient Leaders Project at @theseattleschool to learn ways to find that moment of care for yourself. We think you’re going to love this one.

Direct download: TAC413_Self_Care-Edited.mp3
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Change is inevitable, and transitioning through change often holds together two realities: grief for things that have been lost and hope for what lies ahead. How do we navigate these transitions when it feels as if we’re wandering through the wilderness? Listen as Dan and Rachael talk with Jon DeWaal of Liminal Space about how we might approach walking through seasons of transition in our lives, one step at a time.

Direct download: TAC412_Transitions.mp3
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With so many things fighting for our attention, how do we intentionally create space of goodness for ourselves and others? Join us as we contemplate what it means to focus on the things that matter as we begin this new year.

Direct download: TAC411_Ritual-Rhythm.mp3
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How do we begin to process this past year and look forward to a new year when so many things feel beyond our control? In this special New Year’s Day edition, husband and wife duo Dan and Becky Allender discuss establishing rituals and rhythms that can keep us grounded and centered as we enter 2022.

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