Mary Holmquist CST, is a graduate of the New School for Massage, Bodywork, and Healing and is a certified presenter of Centering Prayer. She is a skilled practitioner of craniosacral therapy.
Mary Holmquist graduated from the New School for Massage, Bodywork and Healing in 2007. She is a skilled practitioner of craniosacral therapy, and is pursuing an advanced certification in craniosacral therapy at the Milne Institute in California. She integrates techniques including myofascial release, breath work, and meditations, allowing the client’s body to lead the way to healing. She helps clients to reduce muscle tension, expand range of motion, injury recovery, headache relief, and finding more refreshed sleep. Mary is a certified presenter of Centering Prayer.
Mary has had many incarnations—in the same lifetime. Her first life was that of a businesswoman. She worked her way through college, beginning in restaurants and then broadening her experience in the food and beverage field to include fine dining, catering, and event management. She became a success in her field, but dragged around a nagging feeling that there must be something more.
So Mary embarked on a path of exploration. She began drawing classes, and four years later, she received her bachelor’s degree in fine arts, taught herself graphic design, and began a second career offering these skills to religious non-profits. She also formed a performance-art group of interdisciplinary artists who challenged boundaries within the arts and in the wider culture. “I used my art and political science degree to do artwork about gender and power, ” she explains.
While she had found her voice in art making, she embarked upon a search for her spiritual roots. Mary began meditating, using Centering Prayer, and eventually led a group for 10 years. She joined the Beloved Retreat community. “People there spoke unabashedly about baptism, reconciliation, nourishment, and ways to bring your gifts to the world, ” she says. “For me, that was provocative—the idea that I could give and receive nourishment. ”
However, she struggled awhile with the question: what was the gift she deeply wished to be giving? When her son, Simon, was born she remembered a long-ago vision she’d held—of doing healing work. This memory launched a third stage in her path. In 2007, Mary completed her certification at the New School of Massage, Bodywork, and Healing in Chicago, then began training in cranio-sacral Therapy at the Milne Institute in California. She immersed herself in anatomy, shamanism, and energy work. “I learned to open up to my gifts as well as resources beyond myself, ” she says, and to bring together the embodied, ethereal-mental and emotional aspects of experience. Today, she helps clients welcome their own experience as a gateway to their wisdom.
Mary’s slow, gentle, respectful touch honors the wisdom that resides in the body and helps integrate those aspects of the self that remain unresolved. “People typically start coming to see me because they’re in pain, ” she allows. “But I don’t just try to ‘fix’ them. Instead, we talk and learn where their physical pain or emotional dissonance reside. Then, when they get on the table, the body shows the way.
“I don’t believe in a spirit-body divide, “ Mary comments, “and I don’t believe in an energy-body divide. I believe in discovering wholeness and peace—in ourselves, and in the world. ”