Sarah A. Bowen
ANIMAL CHAPLAIN & ADVOCATE FOR ALL CREATURES
Sarah offers workshops on interspecies mindfulness practices, works with humans around animal grief/loss, and advocates for exploited and endangered species within both religious and secular contexts. You can often find her huddled over wildlife struck by cars, giving them a sacred sendoff.
Sarah Bowen is an animal chaplain and a co-founder of Compassion Consortium, the first interfaith, interspiritual, and interspecies community for people who care about and advocate for animals and the planet. She also companions animals through death, creates sacred memorial rituals, counsels humans grieving animal loss, and advocates for exploited and endangered species in both religious and secular contexts.
Sarah is also an academic dean at One Spirit Interfaith Seminary, where she encourages emerging clergy to align their spiritual values with animal and planetary welfare. In addition, she has presented on animal death and interspecies spirituality in a wide range of venues, including United Nations World Interfaith Harmony Week, Parliament of the World’s Religions, Compassion Arts Festival, Pace E Bene’s Campaign Nonviolence Action Week, The Spiritual Forum, and numerous podcasts.
An award-winning author, she authored two books on modern spirituality, including Spiritual Rebel: A Positively Addictive Guide to Finding Deeper Perspective and Higher Purpose. Her latest book is Sacred Sendoffs: An Animal Chaplain’s Advice for Surviving Animal Loss, Making Life Meaningful, & Trying to Heal the Planet (Monkfish Publishing, April 2022). She is a columnist on animal/human relationships for Spirituality & Health magazine, and her work has appeared in Tricycle: The Buddhist Review, Elephant Journal, mindbodygreen, and a wide range of spirituality media.
She holds a BA in Human Ecology from Michigan State University, MA in Religious Studies from Chicago Theological Seminary, was ordained through One Spirit Interfaith Seminary, and is joyfully engaged in postgraduate research in Humane Religious Studies and Anthrozoology. Instagram @modernreverend
"If we heed Bowen's teachings, perhaps animals will help us become more nonviolent toward one another―and teach us how to be human.”
―John Dear, author of The Nonviolent Life, Living Peace and other books; executive director of www.beatitudescenter.org
"Bowen achieves balance between the need for compassion, for understanding, and for justice―from the perspectives of both human and other-than-human animals. Her approach is not to preach, scold, or admonish, but instead to pose questions that inspire thoughtful and honest answers.”
―WILLIAM MELTON, co-founder of Compassion Consortium
Favorite Recent Pod Interviews
Spirituality & Health's Essential Conversations with Rabbi Rami Shapiro
JaneUnchained with Jane Velez Mitchell
Main Street Vegan with Victoria Moran
Vegan Spirituality with In Defense of Animals
I'm Awake! Now What? with Krista Xiomara
FOR SPIRITUALITY & HEALTH
Mindful Decisions for Critically Ill Pets
"Bowen helps us explore our relationships with more-than-human animals, unveils multiple layers of animal death all around us that often escape our notice, and guides us in recognizing and ritualizing our grief when animals die."
―CODY J. SANDERS, chaplain at Harvard University and
advisor in the Office of Religious, Spiritual, and Ethical Life at Massachusetts Institute of Technology