A Changing Spirituality & Health

A Changing Spirituality & Health

Penelope Nussbaum

A (slightly) new direction for S&H involves a lot of familiar names and faces.

Spirituality & Health is changing. My job is to make sure it’s changing for the better. I’m the new editor of the publication. Stephen Kiesling, the cofounder and longtime editor, is now the editor at large. He’s sharing his wisdom with me, sharing his perspective at, and contributing to our print edition (page 42).

In today’s media environment, it’s natural to think that “changing” is a euphemism for “cutting costs to the bone, thus alienating readers and advertisers.” Trust me, I’ve lived that sort of change. That’s not what’s happening at S&H. Everything is in place to take S&H up a notch. Or two. Or three. We have loyal, smart, enthusiastic readers, great advertisers, and a fantastic group of people working on our magazine, our digital side, and our all-important back-end functions.

When I was first approached about joining S&H, my answer wasn’t an enthusiastic yes. It was more like, “No way. I’m not the right guy.” Here’s the thing: My spirituality and health both need an upgrade. Most days I’m more haggard than holy. I was intimidated by all the amazing experts populating our pages. And by nature, I’m a generalist. I know a little about a lot instead of a lot about a little.

But the more I explored S&H the more I realized that there was an obvious solution: Trust the experts. Trust our great staff and trust our great writers. Let them shine. In practical terms, that means I’m leaning in to our experts. Rabbi Rami is a key presence in the magazine and has been hosting our podcast for years. He’s now a contributing editor, so his role is only increasing. Be sure to check out his new digital column at I promise you won’t be disappointed. Great writers like Julie Peters and Kathryn Drury Wagner are taking on an expanded role. They’ve both been part of the S&H family for many years. Kalia Kelmenson was our reviews editor. I’ve given her more freedom and more responsibility (and yes, that might be a contradiction).

I’m leaning in to what is best about S&H. That means celebrating our great creative director, Sandra Salamony. It means honoring the artists who grace our pages. As part of that, we’re profiling a featured artist whose work will appear throughout the magazine. I’m so excited that Deedee Cheriel is our inaugural featured artist.

I also took the helm at S&H knowing that I could learn from our readers. Please help me figure out what is most important to you. Tell me what you enjoyed the most in this issue or what you wish we did more of.

Send me an email at ben@spiritualityhealth. com. It might take me a few days (or weeks, depending on where we are in the production cycle), but I promise I’ll read your email, think about it, and respond. Thank you for reading the magazine. Thank you for supporting Spirituality & Health and the work that we do.

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