Karen R. Keen is founder and primary provider at The Redwood Center for Spiritual Care. More than anything, she loves seeing people come alive as they experience meaningful connection with God and others. Karen first honed her listening and helping skills while earning degrees in psychology (B.S.) and counseling (M.S.) from Corban University (formerly WBC) and Western Oregon University. Working as a mental health therapist she became convinced that spiritual wellness forms the foundation for all other well-being. As a result, she left behind the therapy field to pursue work in spiritual care. Karen earned her certificate in spiritual direction from the Training Program for the Ministry of Spiritual Direction under the auspices of the Faithful Companions of Jesus, a congregation of Catholic Sisters in the Ignatian tradition. In addition to private practice, Karen has worked as an affiliate spiritual director with the Faber Center for Ignatian Spirituality at Marquette University where she provided retreats in daily life for campus staff. Through the Faber Center she also benefited from further training in the Ignatian Spiritual Exercises. Karen is a member of North Carolina Community of Spiritual Directors and Spiritual Directors International.
Karen supplements her spiritual care skills with two additional areas of knowledge. First, she has experience with the Public Conversations Project dialogue method and previously served as a facilitator with the Zeidler Center for Public Discussion. She also has familiarity with the method of Sustained Dialogue, as well as Peacemaking Circles. Karen believes spiritual direction is a resource for dialogue where conflict or tension may exist between individuals or groups. Second, Karen grounds her practice in solid biblical and theological training. She holds a M.A. from Western Seminary and a Th.M. from Duke Divinity School. Karen believes the spiritual life is enriched by sacred Scripture and enjoys helping others to discover the transformative wisdom found in it. She has experience teaching Bible in both academic and church settings. Her involvement in various denominational settings gives her an appreciation for different Christian contexts ranging from Baptist to Catholic. She also enjoys working with people from other faith traditions or no faith background.
A California native, Karen now calls Durham, North Carolina home. In her leisure time she enjoys hiking in the woods, reading, conversation with friends in coffee shops, fellowshiping at her church, and occasionally strumming a guitar.
See also the Vision & Values Statement for more on Karen’s approach to care.