IN THE NEWS
Healing Spirit finds local conduit
Psychic medium connects the living and the dead
By Noah Hoffenberg,The Barnstable Patriot Sept. 2014
OSTERVILLE — A dead grandmother — thickly built and in her 80s, with a love of knickknacks and all things British monarchy — entered Suite J at 101 Main St., pushing other dead souls out of the way to talk with the living.
Such was the otherworldly scene described by Rachel Perry, of Mashpee, a psychic medium who acts as a conduit between the living and the dead.
The details about the older deceased woman perked up the ears of attendee Nora Ashley, of Osterville, one of the 16 attendees in Perry’s basement office Aug. 29 for a group reading.
“People had to feed her before she passed,” said Perry, but “she always had a twinkle in her eye.” “Even at the end,” Ashley said, with a hand clasped to her chest. “She says you smell her all the time,” Perry said of the dead woman. And the bobby pins that Ashley, a reiki master, keeps finding in odd places? Those are her grandmother’s, placed in conspicuous places by her deceased ancestor. Perry also gave voice to Ashley’s late identical twin, who died from a heart-related illness when she was only 25, telling of an injury her sister suffered on her left side during a diving accident during summer camp more than a quarter century ago. “She was my other half,” said Ashley. “She was amazing,” Ashley said of Perry after the group reading. “She knows what she’s doing.”
Ashley said that an experience like the one she had with Perry helps purge emotional and spiritual baggage. “You’re getting the healing you wanted. I feel like I lost everything I had to, to move on. She pulls out stuff that you didn’t even know is around you,” she said.
Further, Ashley said, working with Perry shows you how all the elements of your life are there for a reason. Ashley wasn’t the only one overcome with emotion, as others in attendance heard from beyond the grave. Perry said the reason “it’s overwhelming is because it’s healing.”
Addressing a blond woman next, Perry said she was hearing her father. Perry said the man was a former Marine who “fought for this country,” ignored his health and in life wasn’t always forthcoming with his feelings.
Not so in death, said Perry. “He’s learning on the other side to deal with his emotions. He wants you to know that he heard you say, ‘I love you,” Perry said to gasps. Perry asked the woman if she had recently found a heart-shaped rock. “Yes,” the woman said. That was from him, Perry replied.
In preparation to receive the messages from beyond, Perry began the evening of spirit with drumming and chanting, performed by the Wakeby Lake Singers: Earl Mills Jr., her brother-in-law; Attaquin Mills, Perry’s stepson; and Darrell Wixon. All three are members of the Mashpee Wampanoag Tribe. She said the drumming and music help her connect with spirit.
A lock of blond hair dangling across her face, having come loose from her Sarah Palin-style updo, Perry joked with the anxious crowd: “I’m not going to levitate. I only levitate on Sundays. My head is not going to spin, but if I do, take a picture.” Earl Mills Jr. said spirit is part of the Wampanoag culture. “The music opens up doorways, in our hearts and our minds, so that’s how we use it,” said Mills. Mills has known Perry for about 20 years, and said he’s been aware of her gifts for some time. “With her, it’s clear,” he said. “Some people are born with that gift. They open the door for you, but they can’t force you through it.” He said it’s the same in tribal culture, in which some men and women of “medicine” have similar abilities, often passed from parent to child.
Seated in a folding chair, her back straight as she breathed deeply, palms facing upward with fingertips barely touching, Perry mouthed imperceptible words as the slow and steady tribal beats and rhythms palpably filled Suite J.
Spirit, said Perry, descends to the world of flesh to work things out with the living: to apologize, to comfort, to make things right. Perry said when she connects with spirit, she’s not solely herself: While her eyes are open, she isn’t seeing what everyone else is. “I may be looking at you, but I’m not. Rachel is gone.” She said her visions are like a movie screen before her eyes. These visions even take away her normal sight, she said. “I actually just go into a trance state, that’s why I don’t remember these readings.”
When spirit moves through her, Perry describes it as an out-of-body experience, and afterward she feels “wired” from her demonstrations. She said she can’t help but serve spirit. “I’m serving the voiceless. I’m serving your relations, your friends.” Perry asked attendees not to get too hung up on the names she comes up with, as she sometimes gets them wrong. “We don’t want to be that nitpicky. We want to have the door open a little bit,” she said. But not everyone is open, as Perry pointed out. For instance, after describing a young man who died of a drug overdose, Perry thought she had matched the man’s spirit with the right living person. Perry was addressing a woman with close-cropped hair and a long black-and-white striped dress. “I know him through my son, I think,” the woman replied, but she wasn’t so sure about the age of the young man, named Steven, who Perry pegged at 22. “I need you to focus with me,” said Perry, with teacher-like tone. “We can’t get stuck on the age.” In the end, she was rebuffed over the details, and with no one taking ownership of Steven, Perry moved on to the next spirits: one she called Uncle Frankie, another was a suicide by rifle. She said that even when no one fesses up to understanding whom she’s talking about, she always gets an email later from someone in the group who was just too reticent to admit that he or she knew the deceased.
Also, as she acts as the go-between between her guests, Perry dissuades the living from giving her details about their deceased loved ones. “Don’t feed the medium. It blocks the spirit. Rachel needs to be completely out of the way,” she said.
Perry said she had psychic experiences as a child, but they didn’t blossom until after her teenage years (the adolescent mind is too capricious, she said). Her abilities manifested early on in visions, such as seeing her dead brother standing in the corner of her living room. At first, she kept such encounters to herself.
A number of years ago, Perry finally made the leap of faith, left her dental assistant job and embraced her true calling.
For Perry, tuning in to the world of spirit is about healing, to “alleviate the pain of those who are grieving for someone who has passed into spirit. It provides assurance of the continuity of life and the comfort knowing that love ones who have passed are still alive, free from pain and wish to communicate with those on earth,” she writes on her website, rachelperrymedium.com.
“They’re not here to give you lottery numbers. They are of higher intelligence. They’re not stupid,” Perry told the group. “Listen to your souls first, before your brains. If you call upon the world of spirit, they will never turn you wrong.”