I was impressed, the first time I met her. She was dressed in a lady-like-dress, killer heels and hair flicked to perfection. She stood confident on those heels and held her hands out for the open prayer meditation at Living Spirit Church. Then Camille Bennett, held little hands of little children as she guided them to ‘Golden Child’ – The LS Children’s Program.
Then I made a personal connect with this beautiful mother of two boys. An amazing wife to husband Taurus, and a daughter with a unique combination of sass & strength. I was taking 3 classes that semester in Grad school, Fall of ’08. Between a long overdue break-up and a 35 page paper due the following day… I was crushed. I wanted to speak with someone who wouldn’t commiserate; rather pull me out. Camille spoke straight to my heart. I was impressed. I scored an A+ on that paper and it cost me Camille’s free time, a pot of coffee and staying up all night. She was impressed. Camille has given me comfort and challenges, love and leadership, enthusiasm and emotions, writing poetry and singing prayers. Did I mention I was impressed? Here’s what my lucky charm and serving Minister of Living Spirit Church, had to say:
Heal to me is taking a look at the past, sort through it, face it, forgive it and release it. Repeat the process until the pain is lessened and eventually gone.
Is there a short cut to healing?
If you find one let me know… [Laughs]
Are there short steps to healing?
While there are small steps you can take to provide yourself relief, I find that time and breathing in the present moment are the best tools for healing.
Does ‘God’ have any news for us?
Definitely. The news God has is that we can kick down boxes, be artists of spirituality, break free from dogma and still be intimately connected with Him/Her. God wants us to be tolerant of everyone, every living being.
Does ‘God’ have any news from us?
Certainly. Every living creature, speaking to God; is probably saying, “Hurry up. Speed up. Move faster. Aren’t you done yet?” Everything is so much faster now and the speed keeps improving with technology. We are a very impatient society, nowadays. We are tired of waiting and hungry for more. The truth is that God created time and time is on our side.
How can we be gentle with others?
I think the most gentle thing you can do for another human being is to listen. Truly listen. Not listening while thinking of what you are going to say. But, looking into their eyes and hearing their soul, sometimes even listening without spoken words.
How can one be gentle with oneself?
That sometimes can be a tricky one because at times, we have the inner critique that keeps chattering at a pretty rapid pace. The most gentle thing I do for myself is to try and be objective. I try and look at myself from a different perspective. I go outside of myself and see that this woman is really doing the best she can most of the time.
What is your greatest joy and excitement of serving as a Minister for Living Spirit?
The transformation of spirit, to see people truly evolve, to see their consciousness shift and to see them manifest love in the natural world. To see their life change in front of my eyes is the most exhilarating and rewarding feeling. It goes to prove that God spoke through me and I channeled His/Her message for them. This feeling keeps me going during the hard times.
What have you done for the atheists, non-believers?
Most non-believers do not know their reason for coming to our service but they come. I let them be. Let them ask questions. I do not force any belief that I hold near and dear to my heart, simply saying, “I love you, and I am glad you are here.” Let them be who they are and enjoy what we have to offer. I am not gonna try to change you and please don’t try to change me. I know we are all beautiful. Who am I to say one is not enough?
What do you consider as your great accomplishment as a Minister?
My vision changes and shifts as we grow and evolve as a spiritual community. There are times when I go, “Oh my gosh. That was so great,” but I try and not attach myself to that feeling. I don’t think I will ever get to that magic moment when ‘I have done it all.’ Because, I am learning and changing as a Minister. It will never ever stop until I die. But IF I had to point to one, I would say it would be accepting the call as a Minister…that was huge!
What is your biggest fear about being a Minister?
Losing myself. Being viewed as this holy-ethereal-super-being. Losing my sexuality and ability to be free. My biggest fear is people telling me, “Well, you are a Minister. You can’t say that. You can’t do that.” But God has helped me work through that fear. That I am a woman, a vessel and I am here to learn like everybody else. I don’t allow the pressure to consume me.
What has been your biggest failure as being a Minister?
My biggest failure is when I don’t allow myself to fail. Trying to have all the answers. Trying to be perfect. I have to be able to make mistakes. Sometimes I don’t have the answer to a question because I have not read that book. There is no way I can know everything about spirituality. I am only one woman. I can screw up and it’s okay. I grow in the process.
What is the biggest turmoil you have faced in your life as a person?
Losing my father. My father and I had a really strong bond. He offered me encouragement, ambition and security, at times when I needed it. He transitioned a lot younger than I expected him to. I was left to find the things he gave me in myself and that was difficult.
How has your process of healing from this turmoil been?
I don’t think one is completely 100% over it but I do feel better(?) My #1 healing mechanism or tool has been to live in the present moment. When I look around at what’s in front of me, I find love. My husband, Taurus, is absolutely amazing. He is my best friend, my soul mate. And he is here by my side all the time. My children, my Mother, our congregation…they all fill the void with vibrancy. And celebrating life has been my #1 healer.
Some recommend cutting down on soda plus sweetener and exercising as a health tip. What’s do you do/recommend to stay healthy?
Balance. I believe in exercise but not too much. Theoretically I know what works best for me but 30-60 mins 5 days a week works best with me. I like eating healthy but not all the time. Sometimes I wanna eat spare ribs and chocolate. [Chuckles] Tuning in and listening to your body is important because it tells you each day what it needs.
Are you a better daughter, wife, mother, Minister or a Minister’s daughter? What is your weakest role?
[Pauses] … All of them are amazing roles. I have to admit I was not perfect at being the Minister’s daughter. I had my opinions and I am strong willed. It takes a lot of humility to learn from and work with your Mom when you think you are already grown up. Apart from that I would say I am a wife and mother to the best of my ability. I am learning as I go.
What is the greatest danger to peace within society?
Judgment and self righteousness can be detrimental. “My way or the highway” builds a lot of walls that can create anger and resentment which is a catalyst for conflict.
What is the greatest danger to purity within society?
I like to watch the documentaries of celebrities. I see them start off with a specific purpose and when they lose the anchor of spirituality there is a downward spiral. Sometimes they inflate their ego and have to live up to people’s expectations. I understand there is a lot of pressure which can lead them to self-destruction. This harms their purity and society’s at large.
Who are you Heroes/Sheroes?
My Mom her unconditional love, compassion, and her elegance. My Grandma, Irene. She was regal, intuitive and resilient. My besties aka, “The Pentagon” they keep me grounded and see the best in me no matter what.
Any men good enough to be your Hero?
[Laughs] I am letting my inner feminist out… Taurus, my husband! He has this amazing way of studying every part of me carefully so that he can remind me of who I really am when I need it the most. He actively listens so after talking to him you feel like a rock star. Then you realize that he said very little. He simply listened and tapped into your soul. Christian, my elder son. He is so dynamic and reminds me to look beyond form. Whereas; Morgan, my emo child, teaches me how to be fully present, how to feel and how to connect on an intimate level.
What book lies by your bedside table?
What God Wants by Neale Donald Walsh…
The most helpful book you have read and reread so far…
The Bible had the most supernatural power in my life. It has guided me in a very organic way… Answered lot of my questions. Others would be Tao Te Ching by Lao Tzu, A New Earth by Eckhart Tolle, and Of Water And The Spirit by Malidoma Patrice Some.
Any message to your readers?
Keep opening your heart. Keep opening your mind. Keep allowing yourself to expand and grow. Learn about everything and everyone as much as you can. Don’t set boundaries for yourself. Keep being a student forever.
– Interviewed by Pratik Mamtora
A passion to serve! Camille Bennett followed in her parent’s footsteps, the daughter of Bob and Vicki Goldston. On October 2012, Minister Vicki Goldston passed the torch with love to her daughter Camille, who is now Minister of Living Spirit Church.
Camille is a graduate of The University of Metaphysics and has done post-graduate work at Global Ministries University. Camille has a BA in Marketing and won a National Championship in Poetry Interpretation at the University of Alabama. Camille also works with her loving husband Taurus Bennett as the Office Manager for Family Insurance in Florence, AL. Camille and Taurus Bennett, aka, Team Bennett also serve the community as Court Appointed Special Advocates through Lauderdale County CASA, they actively advocate for children in the foster care system.
Camille believes that through hope and clear vision, we can live in heaven each day . She stands for empowerment through conscious living. She is a passionate speaker, who incorporates Spoken Word and shares her messages with the Universe. Minister Camille is also a wife to Taurus and mother to Christian (12) and Morgan (8).