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Published: Saturday, 9/3/2011

Psychic Fair set for curious, believers alike

BY DAVID YONKE
BLADE RELIGION EDITOR

For people who are curious about communicating with the dead or foretelling the future, an upcoming Psychic Fair and Health Event will offer palm and tarot readings, afterlife communications, and psychic mediums.

“The thing I try to tell people is, ‘Have an open mind,’” the Rev. Mary Ann Miller said. “If it doesn’t fit for you, that’s OK. And if it does fit, that’s OK too.”

Pastor Miller is the organizer of the Psychic Fair, set for 9:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Sept. 10 at the Comfort Inn South, Oregon and Wales roads in Northwood.

The ordained Spiritualist minister acknowledged that some people frown on mediums and communicating with the dead.

“I know it’s not for everybody, but I have a right to practice my religion,” she said.

Spiritualists maintain that Bible verses forbidding divination and contacting the dead are superseded by the Gospel message that “God is love,” and that love bridges the two worlds.

Pastor Miller was ordained a minister in the Spiritualist Church in 1989 and has been pastor of Good Will Spiritualist Church in Walbridge since 1998.

When she is asked to contact the dead, Pastor Miller said she tells people not to count on reaching specific people.

“It’s like when you dial a phone. You can’t guarantee who will answer,” she said. “I can’t guarantee I will bring your Aunt Helen or Uncle George. What happens if your Aunt Helen doesn’t want to come through and your mother does? Be open. Be receptive. It’s not an exact science, but you do what you do, what you feel.”

Spiritualism has been a church in the United States since at least the mid-1800s. The National Spiritualist Association of Churches, citing a 1919 definition, describes Spiritualism as “the science, philosophy, and religion of continuous life based upon the demonstrated fact of communication, by means of mediumship, with those who live in the Spirit World.”

Pastor Miller said her encounters with the dead vary from case to case.

“It’s different at different times. Sometimes it’s a really strong impression, overwhelming. Other times it’s a real flash. It’s learning to trust what you get and not question it,” she said.

One of the more well-known practitioners of Spiritualism was the Rev. James Tingley, a minister from Toledo who was pastor of First Spiritualist Church from 1969 until his death in 1999. Another famous Spiritualist was Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, the British physician and author of the Sherlock Holmes novels.

Pastor Miller said her Walbridge church is the only Spiritualist church remaining in the Toledo area after two others closed, and Sunday morning attendance averages around 25 to 30.

She said she believes in heaven but not in hell and does not believe in evil spirits. She said death gives people “a sense of freedom,” no longer having to endure suffering or pain.

In addition to mediums, readings, and afterlife communication, the Psychic Fair and Health Event will feature vendors and experts in Reflexology, aroma therapy, ear candling, Reiki, crystal therapy, kenning stones, and more.

Admission is $4; readings are $15 for 15 minutes.

Contact David Yonke at: dyonke@theblade.com or 419-724-6154.



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