When we hear the word “dance,” there may be a few (often unfavorable) images that come to mind. The first might be our own unskilled version. The second might be what we see happening on the dance floors of clubs and bars across the country. But hopefully, there is room in the distortion of our mind’s version of the word “dance,” for the glorifying art-form that Marian shares with us! There are certainly challenges that have become closely associated with dance – such as becoming fixated on body image (Marian shares her personal journey), but all things good and beautiful have a need to be redeemed and thereby to glorify God.
Dancer Marian West Veilleux joins me on this episode of The Dignity of Women podcast, explaining how dance is redemptive and a beautiful expression in which to glorify God, and how it truly embodies the Theology of the Body (with beautiful lessons from brother, Christopher West).
Marian graduated Summa Cum Laude from DeSales University, with her B.A. in Dance, and then moved to New York City, where she became licensed as a massage therapist. She danced with St. Michael’s Warriors Dance Co., a Catholic, hip-hop dance company, and studied under Lori Belilove of the Isadora Duncan Dance Foundation. After several years of teaching and performing, Marian embarked on a 14-month mission of compassion in Brooklyn with Heart’s Home. Now, having returned to her hometown of Lancaster, PA, Marian lives her call as a wife, daughter, sister, auntie, Godmama, friend, and pray-er. She values heartfelt, authentic connection and offers her work, integrating the beauties of dance, song, and massage therapy to touch heart, body, mind, and soul with the compassion of Christ.
- Why body issues/eating disorders have become synonymous with dance/gymnastics/figure skating
- Marian’s personal journey with an eating disorder
- How can our faith oppose tendencies to become obsessive/compulsive with our figure
- Dance as an expression of praise, contrasted with immodest expression meant to attract negative attention
- Volunteer work/charity as a way to stay grounded/overcome focus on self
- Surrounding yourself with family and friends who are able to reflect truth
- Having courage to seek help and encountering beauty in redemption
LINKS AND RESOURCES
- Theology of the Body
- Reckless Love by Cory Asbury
- Breaking Free from Food Addiction
- From the First Bite
- Overeaters Anonymous
- Letter to Artists
- Cavod Academy of the Arts
- 33 Days to Merciful Love