By Sheila Wise Rowe and Ann Boyd

Sheila Wise Rowe: Young, Gifted, and Black

“We know that the Lord meets our deepest needs and has the ability to heal our deepest hurts, but also — most of the time the Lord uses other people. And so we really need each other.”  — Sheila Wise Rowe

Sheila Wise Rowe talks with us about the importance of mental health, the unlikely pairing of lament and celebration, and the complexities of growing up gifted and Black.

Let me invite you into a conversation with Sheila Wise Rowe, counselor, speaker, spiritual director, and author of Young, Gifted, and Black: A Journey of Lament and Celebration.  In this new book, Sheila explores the complex emotional landscape that comes along with the Black experience for those who are young and gifted, covering topics from perfectionism to boundaries to healing from trauma. The principles that Sheila teaches us through the pages of her book address these experiences in a way that fully acknowledges the complexity of the young lives she is talking about, while also being universal enough to apply authentically to the experiences of all of us — young or old, from a variety of backgrounds. I especially love the way Sheila’s work is so fully undergirded by her deep faith — a quality that I think comes through loud and clear both in this interview and in her writing. This is the second time Sheila has been on the podcast, and it’s a delight to have her back with us for a fresh conversation.

So have a listen! We're so glad you're here.

— Ann Boyd

You can listen on iTunes or at The Women Scholars and Professionals Podcast. We hope you enjoy this conversation as much as we did.

Further resources for this interview:


Photo by Artsy Solomon on

About the Author

Sheila Wise Rowe is a graduate of Tufts University and Cambridge College with a master's degree in counseling psychology. For over twenty-five years she has counseled abuse and trauma survivors in the United States. Sheila ministered to homeless and abused women and children in Johannesburg, South Africa, where she also taught counseling and trauma-related courses for a decade.

Sheila is the executive director of The Rehoboth House and the cofounder of The Cyrene Movement, an online community for people of color seeking healing for racial trauma. She is the author of The Well of Life: Heal Your Pain, Satisfy Your Thirst, Live Your Purpose along with The Wonder Years. She lives in the Boston area, where she is a writer, counselor, speaker, and spiritual director.

Ann is the Women Scholars and Professionals Podcast host and the interim editor for The Well. She has worked for InterVarsity Christian Fellowship since 1997, exploring her interests in community, spiritual formation, and writing. Ann has a BM in Music Education from Northwestern University and lives in Chicago, Illinois with one husband, two spunky teenage daughters, and three snuggly cats. You’ll often find Ann baking sweet treats in the kitchen while listening to a podcast or audiobook.

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