Coordinator of Care
Coordinator of Children and Family Ministry
Teen Lead Advisor
Haman Cross III
Coordinator of Creative Arts
Rev. Lola P. Wright
Rev. Rainbow Weldon
Coordinator of Careabby@bodhispiritualcenter.org
Abigail Sutkus is a certified life coach and meditation instructor with a love of sunshine and salsa dancing and an uncanny ability to recall every bite of delicious food she has ever eaten. She is fueled by prayer, authentic communication, and annual retreats to Sedona where she recharges in the nourishing energy of the red rocks. Abigail earned her Master’s Degree in Spirituality in 2000, writing her thesis on the power of circles to strengthen participants’ connection to themselves, each other, and Spirit. As Coordinator of Care at Bodhi, she is committed to anchoring and deepening the structures of support within the community as well as to expanding opportunities for intimacy and belonging.
Teen AdvisorAshanti Garcia-Shamsuddin was born and raised in Chicago. She has been attending Bodhi since she was 10 years old. She has a passion for performing and is currently attending Columbia College Chicago pursuing a BFA in musical theater. Ashanti enjoys working with children and has worked for Chicago Public Schools as a teacher aid in the PreK class at Burr Elementary. She is excited to transition from teen to Teen Advisor for the Bodhi teen group. She is grateful to be able to continue her journey and hopefully inspire more teens to eventually become Teen Advisors as well.
Coordinator of Children and Family MinistryAffectionately referred to as the child whisperer by parents who’ve had the opportunity to see her in action. She brings a wealth of spiritual and parental experience, ranging from an educator, minister, reiki practioner and more importantly a mom. Chinyere “Chi” Achebe is a L2 certified Reiki Practioner and Certified Parent Coach.
Teen Lead Advisorteen@bodhispiritualcenter.org
Cory has studied for four years to obtain an equivalency of a Master’s Degree in Spirituality. As part of Christ Universal Temple, he served as the co-president of a young adult organization and helped run a male mentoring program, developing programs that teach people how to live more fulfilling lives. He has taught Visual Art at Legacy Charter School for 3 years; and he has taught classes for the past 5 years in Visual Art, Contemporary History and Leadership for High Jump Chicago, a nonprofit that prepares minority youth for top independent, parochial and boarding schools around the nation; and he also consults. He volunteers and served on the board of directors of Project Osmosis Education and Mentoring Initiative, a design not-for-profit that mentors urban youth by introducing to design disciplines. He also served as Co-director of Fundraising for Architecture for Humanity Chicago. Cory believes that creativity is a huge factor in living systems. And, that if “a great vision is the raw ingredient to creating great achievements within an organization,” then the use of effective communication, integrated-marketing, and fundraising to support that vision is the alchemy that supplies the magic to achieve great things.
Haman Cross III
Coordinator of Creative ArtsHaman is a product of deep spiritual roots with a firm foundation in the artistic expression of spiritual ideals and concepts. As a leader, spiritual explorer and individual passionately committed to the expansion of others, he works in several disciplines and mediums ranging from fine art illustrating to set design. He is also building an effort to educate, inspire, and mobilize individuals and groups towards community engagement and empowerment. Over the past 20 years, he has contributed to program and community development as an organizer, coordinator, collaborator, and innovator providing support to individuals and organizations. Haman currently works in youth development where he mentors young men from the westside of Chicago. His work encompasses all generations, gender, and ethnicities. Haman looks forward to this journey with Bodhi as we grow, share and create a world full of love, oneness and peace.
Rev. Lola P. Wright
Rev. Lola began attending Bodhi in 2005. She enthusiastically served and voraciously took classes for the next several years. The teachings and community transformed her life and in 2007 she met her husband Nathan at Bodhi. Lola completed her Ministerial training at Emerson Theological Institute and now serves as a Licensed Minister with the Centers for Spiritual Living. Lola has studied with Mary Manin Morrissey and the Life Mastery Institute, Rev. Michael Bernard Beckwith of Agape International Spiritual Center and Pioneers for the Possible, Landmark Worldwide and Jim Morningstar and Transformations Worldwide Learning Community.
Rev. Lola married her professional experience of years working in major financial institutions with her spiritual quest. She is known for her commitment, dedication and perseverance. Her playful and joyful spirit is infectious. And her complete devotion to authentic and clear communication powerfully impacts the people she serves and loves. Lola and Nathan have been married since 2007 and have four children Laurand (18), Trey (16), Caroline (7) and J.P. (4).
Nick Cartwright is a local audio-visual technician, live sound engineer, and indie rock musician. He had his start doing on-set audio recording and post-production audio and video for short films, a successful YouTube music news channel, and interning at a major broadcast & media production studio. His work has been featured in Chicago 48 Film Fest, Brain Frame ‘Performative Comix Readings’, Desperado LGBT Film Fest, CNKY Film Fest, Pride Films & Plays’ Queer Bits Film Fest, and on television, radio, and YouTube for tens of thousands of people to see and hear. You can find him around Chicago mixing sound and performing at various rock venues and at Bodhi Spiritual Center on Sunday mornings running audio-visual.
Rev. Rainbow Weldon
Rev. Rainbow, originally from Atlanta, grew up in the New Thought teachings.
She created the Youth and Family Ministry at Bodhi and began taking classes becoming licensed as a Spiritual Practitioner in 2007. Rainbow met her wife Heather Marsh-Prelesnik at Bodhi and the two moved to Hawaii to teach theatre in 2008.
Living in Hawaii, Rainbow received a wake up call which led to answering the call to Ministry. She witnessed the suffering, poverty and separation present in humanity and realized she had something to contribute and share.
Rainbow returned to Chicago and rejoined staff in 2014. In 2016 she completed her ministerial studies with Emerson Theological Institute and currently serves as Staff Minister. Rev. Rainbow is also a certified Finding Freedom Spiritual Counselor with Rev. Jennifer Hadley. She is now training with her most powerful teacher yet, her daughter Cadence born December 2015.
Rev. Rainbow is passionate about spiritual transformation and loves to support people in developing a healthy relationship to self and others.
Lead VocalistFor as long as she can remember, Simbryt knew she was destined to sing. From the day she sang her first solo in the church choir at the age of two, her path to success has broadened. Her experiences in the entertainment industry have taken her many places, including Star Search (two-time Teen Vocalist Champion), The Apollo Theater, and two-time WGCI Radio Home Jam winner.
Simbryt’s star has continued to rise not only as a soloist, but also as a background singer for some of music’s top performers. She has accompanied such artists as Stevie Wonder, Michael McDonald, Seal, Celine Dion, R. Kelly, and Diana Ross.
Among the titles of singer and songwriter, Simbryt has also acquired jingle singer and voiceover artist. For over 20 years, her voice has been heard through television and radio commercial ads for such companies as McDonald’s, Disney, and Proctor and Gamble, and through her solo and group performances for the Oprah Winfrey show’s “Run On” theme song.
Simbryt is grateful to bring her background and education in performance and theatrical production to Bodhi. Her mission is to create a memorable and life-empowering experience for the Bodhi community each and every Sunday and she is thrilled to work alongside the amazing leadership and staff of Bodhi Spiritual Center.
Typhanie has been involved as a guest performer at Bodhi for over ten years. May 2015, she accepted the position as Musical Director and is elated to share her voice and spirit with the beloved Bodhi community.
Typhanie Monique is an internationally acclaimed performer, songwriter and bandleader, and one of the most sought after versatile vocalists and educators in Chicago. An independent recording artist, Typhanie has released three critically acclaimed albums in collaboration with jazz guitarist Neal Alger that received international radio, press, and touring opportunities.
Bodhi Spiritual Center is led by a group of dedicated and inspired community members. These members serve prayerfully to see that the organization fulfills its Purpose. Our current Core Council includes:
- Horace Clark
- Jonathan Hoffman
- Pat Levy
- Denise Maple
- Chance Patterson
- Eileen Rhodes
- Scott Schoettes
- Rev. Lola Wright