Garden Path

About Me

When I was a child, I thought not at all about becoming a priest or psychoanalyst. All I really wanted to do was play third base for the Washington Senators. That didn’t work out so well, and instead I spent some time in politics and journalism – pretty natural for a guy who grew up in Washington, D.C.

Then something else took over, and what Jung called the individuation process began to unfold, leading me to vocations more central to myself even than playing third base. At the University of Maryland, I discovered a strong academic bent and graduated summa cum laude.  A few years later, a religious conversion led me to Chicago to join a Roman Catholic religious order.  During seminary, I sought some counseling and the person I trusted to suggest a therapist sent me to a Jungian analyst.  This changed my life. 

My heart opened considerably during those years.  I fell in love, and left my order to marry.  This also broughtt a move into the Episcopal Church, where I fell in love again, this time with a wonderful, if eccentric church.  And I began a Jungian journey that has been a wonderful extension of my priestly life.

Since 1984, when I came to Chicago, I’ve:

  • co-founded the AIDS Pastoral Care Network in 1985

  • pastored two Episcopal parishes from 1995 to 2014

  • helped lead the Chicago Jung Institute for nearly a decade, including serving as its president (2015-2018)

  • taught as an adjunct professor at Loyola’s Institute of Pastoral Studies (2014-present)

  • worked as a psychotherapist since the 1980s (a Jungian analyst since 2007).

 

As I’ve grown older, my work has become mostly “clinical” (psychotherapy, analysis, spiritual companioning). I also teach regularly at Loyola University Chicago, and occasionally perform priestly functions. I hope eventually to make time to write. But most of my energy is devoted to inner work with individuals seeking to listen to their hearts and to transform their lives.

 

If you are reading this, you likely are considering the possibility of working with me. I use this website to help you make an initial decision: should I call Steve or not? Here’s how I work:

As a Jungian analyst, I am particularly alert for markers of the “individuation” process. Together we will seek to discern where the “Self” is leading you; what is unfolding in your life -- inner and outer – that is inviting (or maybe even demanding) you to become more and more yourself. This will be true whether we are engaged in analysis, psychotherapy, or spiritual companioning.

 

Psychologically, I’ve also been influenced by other ideas and movements: especially contemporary (Freudian) psychoanalysis, self psychology, intersubjectivity, the relational school, and family systems thought (especially Bowen and Schwartz). If these words are unfamiliar to you, don’t worry. I see a lot of therapists and this is language for them. For non-specialists, it boils down to: I attend carefully to a) the relationship between us and b) the language of the unconscious and its processes. I’ll encourage you to do the same.

 

If our work is that of spiritual companionship – what is also called “spiritual direction” – all of the above applies, but we will:

  • emphasize your relationship with the Divine more than our relationship

  • probably meet less often (although this is negotiable)

  • likely use whatever spiritual language you speak more than Jung’s language of the Self and archetypes.

Training & Education

Analytic Diploma, C.G. Jung Institute of Chicago. Thesis: The Good Shepherd: Explorations of an Archetypal Image

Certificate in Marriage and Family Therapy with emphasis on Illness and Families,

Center for Family Health at the University of Chicago

Certificate in Pastoral Counseling at the Center for Religion and Psychotherapy

Licensure – Illinois Licensed Clinical Professional Counselor

University of Maryland, Bachelor of Arts, summa cum laude

Catholic Theological Union, Master of Divinity

Chicago Theological Seminary, Doctor of Ministry in pastoral counseling.  

Professional Paper on liturgy and ritual for people affected by AIDS.