Mark Yaconelli is a writer, speaker, retreat leader, spiritual director, community activist, youth worker, storyteller, husband, and father. He is the co-founder and programme director for the Center for Engaged Compassion at Claremont School of Theology which seeks to heal broken people and communities through contemplation, creativity and compassion.
Mark is the founder and executive director of The Hearth: Real Stories by Regular Folks, a registered non-profit that assists cities and service-based agencies in producing personal storytelling events designed to help communities and individuals deepen relationships and cultivate compassion.
Mark is in demand as a speaker and retreat leader. He speaks to a variety of audiences each year across North America and the United Kingdom. He has been a retreat leader and/or keynote speaker for agencies such as The Greenbelt Arts Festival, Compassion International, The National Youth Workers Convention (U.K., Canada, and U.S.), The Salvation Army, The Global Gathering for Spirituality and Justice, The National Presbyterian Youth Triennium, and many other events and organizations.
Mark spent 20 years working with young people and the people who serve them (parents, youth workers, social workers, pastors) in congregational, camp, and conference settings. In 1996, he co-founded the Youth Ministry and Spirituality Project at San Francisco Theological Seminary, a grant funded project that sought to test the integration of contemplative practice and awareness within congregational youth ministry programs. He directed that project from 1996 to 2006.
Mark Yaconelli holds an MA in Christian Spirituality from the Graduate Theological Union and a Graduate Diploma in the Art of Spiritual Direction from San Francisco Theological Seminary.
Mark lives in Southern Oregon with his wife Jill, and their three children–Noah, Joseph, and Grace.
You can see more on Mark’s website at https://markyaconelli.wordpress.com.