Reach her at Clouds in Water: 651-222-6968, ext. 2, or by email
Sosan Theresa Flynn was ordained a Zen Buddhist priest in 1997, and serves part-time as executive director of Clouds in Water Zen Center in St. Paul. She has been officiating at weddings since 2004. Sosan has also officiated at many other ceremonies, such as baby naming ceremonies, memorial services, daily Zen liturgies and special liturgies. She has 15 years of experience giving lectures and teaching classes on meditation and mindful living. She was raised Catholic and practiced Catholicism for 36 years before embracing Buddhism as her primary religion. Sosan has a master’s degree in Counseling Psychology. She lives in St. Paul with her husband of 24 years and their 13-year-old son.
Flying Fish studied Zen at MZMC and was ordained by Diane Martin at Udumbara Zen Center in Evanston, IL in 2004. Currently at Clouds in Water she practices and teaches under the joint guidance of Diane and Byakuren Judith Ragir. She supports this community through teaching classes, one on one meetings with practitioners and as a priest liason to the Children’s practice. She was trained at Abbott Northwestern Hospital as a medical chaplain and has worked as a hospice chaplain with Allina Healthcare system. Her background includes college degrees in both Architecture and Art History and has worked both as a designer and art consultant in these fields. Her family with two adult children has and continues to be an important part of her life.
Ken Ford found his way into Zen practice slowly, beginning with “academic” exploration in his college years, then his first contacts with Dainin Katagiri roshi in Minneapolis in 1976. He studied at Minnesota Zen Meditation Center and Hokyoji with Katagiri roshi and, later, Shohaku Okumura. He has studied at Tassajara monastery and Green Gulch Farm Zen Center in California, and at Clouds in Water where he has been an active member since 1999. Retired from a career as a city planner, Ken is a lay teacher at Clouds in Water Zen Center. He is a member of the Board of Directors of Hokyoji Zen Practice Community. He does volunteer work for Nonviolent Peaceforce and participates in interfaith dialogue in the local community.
Kyoku Tracey Walen began her Zen life in 1997 with a kayaking trip in Alaska that included meditation and Buddhist readings. She never looked back. In 1998 she joined Clouds in Water and dove into Buddhist practice with guiding teacher Dosho Mike Port and dharma teacher Byakuren Judith Ragir. In 1999 she retired from her career as a financial executive and took up Zen practice full-time, including serving the Clouds in Water sangha in many roles and studying with many guest teachers. Responding to a strong desire to explore monastic practice, she started visiting monasteries in 2005 including a month’s stay in Plum Village with Thich Nhat Hanh in 2007. Byakuren Judith Ragir ordained Kyoku in 2008 and she entered training with Chozen and Hogen Bays at Great Vow Zen Monastery for three years. She returned to Clouds in Water in 2011 where she teaches and serves the temple in a variety of roles.