Every Monday at 6:30 p.m. — A gentle practice open to all
Please note: There will be NO cathedral Yoga on Monday, July 4.
In the sacred space of Saint Mark’s Cathedral, this spiritual practice is designed to improve health, release tension, and deepen spirituality. It is a gentle, restorative, and contemplative practice, and the instructors guide the group in ways that welcome newcomer and experienced practitioners alike. Pay what you can.
Please bring your own mat, although if you do not have one, sanitized mats are available.
UPDATE: Beginning Monday, March 14, masks will no longer be required at Cathedral Yoga. However, our primary concern is that all feel welcome and safe. The cathedral nave is a large, well-ventilated space, and all are welcome to remain masked and distanced from unmasked participants. Please respect others' desire for distance. See the official announcement about this change at the cathedral here.
About the Cathedral Yoga Ministry
The Cathedral Yoga ministry was launched in the fall of 2013, offering a one-hour practice in the sacred space of the cathedral nave each Sunday evening. Over the course of the next 6 years the ministry created a devoted community. For some, it was yoga that brought them through the doors of Saint Mark's for the first time. It is spiritual practice, but its spirituality emerges through an intense, focused bodily awareness. The classes are gentle, restorative, and contemplative. Participants are asked to pay what they are able.
In March of 2020 the offering was suspended, and it remained dormant for the remainder of 2020 and into 2021. After attempts to offer Cathedral Yoga virtually, the ministry began again as a weekly in-person offering on July 26, 2021, on a new day and time: Monday evenings at 6:30 p.m.
Organist John Stuntebeck will offer 30 minutes of drone-based improvisations on the Mighty Flentrop from 6 to 6:30 p.m. on the first Monday of each month, with Cathedral Yoga following immediately at 6:30. Doors open just before 6. You are welcome to attend the organ prelude without staying for the yoga class. Learn more and hear a very brief excerpt here. Organ Meditation will be offered on:
- APRIL 4, 6–6:30 P.M.
- JUNE 6, 6–6:30 P.M.
- AUGUST 1, 6–6:30 P.M.
- SEPTEMBER 6, 6–6:30 P.M.
(Note that there is no organ OR yoga on July 4. The offering on August 1 will be played by a guest organist.)
Sound Bath/Aural Meditation
On the Monday after Easter, Cathedral Yoga hosted a 30-minute sound bath/aural meditation by Black Moon Company, a Seattle musician and Reiki practitioner, from 7:30 to 8 p.m.. The yoga class was offered as usual from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m., and the sounds began shortly afterwards. Participants were invited to attend the sound bath without attending the class, or to attend the class and leave when the sound bath began.
Check out samples of Black Moon Company's work here. Additional Sound Bath offerings on the third Monday of each month:
- JUNE 20, 7:30–8 P.M.
- JULY 18, 7:30–8 P.M.
- AUGUST 15, 7:30–8 P.M.
- SEPTEMBER 19, 7:30–8 P.M.
About the Instructors
WENDY TOWNSEND first came to Saint Mark's in 1996, and, along with Brenna Kramer, began the Cathedral Yoga ministry in the fall of 2013. For those who think that yoga teachers are all super-flexible contortionists, it may be interesting to know that Wendy has both scoliosis and spinal stenosis. In 2020, after experiencing terrible pain, she went through serious back surgery— a laminectomy in the lumbar region. After a lot of healing she is now pain-free and practicing yoga as she has been for over 50 years!
How did you first get involved in yoga?
I loved the first yoga class I attended in 1964 in Boston. I then always went to yoga classes wherever I was—in Manila and Sydney and then here in Seattle. Through the years I experienced many different types of yoga and studied with a lot of yoga "stars". Finally I did my teacher training with Ana Forrest and Shari Friederickson.
What are your goals for a Cathedral Yoga class?
My goals for Cathedral Yoga are to have people receive a visceral sense of the sacred, to leave feeling better than when they came, relaxed and stretched out.
If someone was on the fence about attending Cathedral Yoga for the first time, what would you say to them?
Individuals have told me over the years how much they enjoy yoga on the altar platform. No other yoga setting can compete!
The idea of attending a yoga class can be intimidating to someone who has never done it before, but it's worth the adventure. Cathedral Yoga is always taught in a way that will be rewarding for people of all levels, including absolute beginners. Some have found that practicing in the huge space of the cathedral nave actually make them less self-conscious than they feel in the smaller space of a typical yoga studio!
SALLY SENGER is a registered nurse in the Seattle area, and is trained in over 300 hours of vinyasa & yin yoga. She combines these skills with her growing interest and knowledge in eastern modalities of medicine utilizing her expertise in both arenas to encourage and facilitate health in her community. Sally enjoys the fascinating world of neuroscience and the positive effects of mindfulness drive Sally’s interests and direct her daily practices. Additionally, she believes that food is a powerful medicine that can heal our bodies and promote overall health. She currently is an active Functional Nutrition Counselor. Sally’s truest joy comes from connecting and supporting others in their own wellness journeys. She believes we all have the capacity to heal, to grow, and to bring our own unique magic to this world. She looks forward to supporting this community.
RUTH SONAWANE has taught Vinyasa yoga for the past five years. She loves to combine conscious flows that strengthen and bring ease to body, mind and spirit. As a former NCAA collegiate athlete in track and cross country, her yoga journey started out with a curiosity of the asanas from an exercise perspective. As she evolved, the big “Y” yoga, the spiritual aspects, philosophy and cultural/historical context of yoga are what propel her to seek to honor and perpetuate this precious body of wisdom and practice. Ruth was certified as a RYT-200 Vinyasa teacher with Yoga Alliance in 2017. In 2021, she gained additional certification as a RYT-200 hour teacher of Instinctive Meditation. She is currently enrolled in a RYT-500 hour training program and will be gaining additional certifications to teach Yoga Nidra, Yin Yoga, Restorative Yoga, Trauma-Informed Yoga, and Adaptive Yoga. Ruth is an active member of Saint Mark's, and her children were baptized in the cathedral in January 2022. Learn more at her website and blog, Surya Sojourn Yoga.
LEAH ADAMS is a mindful Yin Yoga instructor and Ayurvedic wellness counselor who also incorporates functional breathing, neuroscience and Chinese Medicine Theory into her practice, helping others reset and find balance. A cancer survivor with a former career in advertising and fashion, she believes wholeheartedly that opportunities to practice yoga are everywhere, not only on the yoga mat. She is ever grateful to her Yin Yoga teachers Bernie Clark and Sarah Powers. Leah is a lifelong student who now lives and teaches in the Seattle area.
Yin Yoga is a beautiful, meditative, and centering yoga practice. Yin Yoga is often described as the other half of exercise. It is a complementary practice to more active styles of yoga supporting maintenance of mobility, and healing. This class offers an opportunity to explore mindfulness and the subtler aspects of a personal practice. Working with gravity, students move gently through poses, holding each pose for several minutes. The long-held poses in Yin facilitate stimulation in the deeper connective tissues. Yin classes focus on the lower body; especially the hips, pelvis, inner thighs, and lower spine. The Yin practice provides a balance to the pace of modern living, restoring students’ vitality and supporting natural rhythms.
The practice of mindful yin supports every layer of our being; body, heart-mind, and energy. Yin Yoga is a practice that is both ancient and modern, designed to enliven the tissues, soften and steady the heart, and enhance and balance our energetic system. The intention of these classes is to create space to support the nervous system, reduce stress/anxiety, and build resilience.
Upcoming Cathedral Yoga Schedule
Teachers and schedule are subject to change.
- July 4 - NO CLASS (July 4 Holiday)
- July 11 - Sally Senger
- July 18 - Ruth Sonawane (with Sound Bath 7:30–8)
- July 25 - Andrew Ragan
- August 1 - Wendy Townsend (with Organ Meditation, 6–6:30)
- August 8 - Ruth Sonawane
- August 15 - Sally Senger (with Sound Bath 7:30–8)
- August 22 - Andrew Ragan
- August 29 - guest instructor