I have always had a vested interest in helping others. And I love to see how people are able to overcome their struggles and find happiness and peace. It has been my lifelong goal to provide that support—it’s one of the reasons I became a therapist in the first place.
But before I ever became a Manhattan psychotherapist, I was a practicing pastoral counselor and Roman Catholic Priest. My real journey to starting my practice starts there.
From Priest To Therapist
In 1998, I was ordained as a Roman Catholic Priest for the Archdiocese of St. Louis, MO. While I was more than happy to serve my parish, I began to understand more fully a problem that has existed in the church for a long time: the lack of acceptance of the LGBT community.
I myself am a gay man, which was something I had spoken about with my Bishop at length—not because I considered my sexual orientation wrong, but because it bothered me that my faith didn’t express the tolerance and acceptance for individuals with my orientation that I believed it should. And more and more I started to realize that others would face that exact same problem.
That’s when I decided to write my book Hidden Voices: Reflections of a Gay Catholic Priest. In it, I discussed my own experience of being a gay man of faith in order to help provide hope for others undergoing similar issues. I firmly believe that being a member of the LGBTQ+ community is not a sin; God creates us exactly as He intends for us to be.
In 2016, I decided to retire from the parish. As a Manhattan psychotherapist, I wanted to help a greater range of people who may be struggling with the same issues that I have personally faced.
My Experiences Informed My Approach To Therapy
As a pastoral counselor, I became known as someone who was very approachable—others could speak openly to me with little fear of judgment. I also became very adept at offering hope and providing warm support for people going through difficult times. I have carried these skills over to my therapy practice, providing a warm, safe environment where you can say anything you need to.
All of my specialties—LGBT therapy, addiction, mindfulness—are based around things that I have personally experienced throughout my life. I know firsthand how difficult some of these struggles can be, but I also know a variety of ways to help you get through them.
My modalities are primarily person-focused and solution-focused therapy. I know that coming to therapy can be intimidating sometimes, so I want to move at the pace that’s most comfortable for you.
Awards And Recognition
Perhaps unsurprisingly, my book caused quite a stir, which has led to me making many appearances in the media. Some major interviews I have had can be found on Viewpoint and on CNN, where I discuss my experiences and my personal beliefs on what it means to be a gay Catholic priest.
In addition, I have been written about—and have published my own works—in The Huffington Post, The Washington Post, The Advocate, St. Louis Post Dispatch, Riverfront Times, and Windy City Times, all of which discuss my own coming-out story and what I have moved on to doing now.
I have also been lucky enough to be granted several awards, including:
Lifetime Achievement Award (2008)
‘Best of St. Louis Award’ by the Riverfront Times (2013)
FBI Director’s Community Leadership Award (2013)
Company of Grace Award (2017)
And numerous Resolutions from the City of St. Louis recognizing my work in North St. Louis.
While I am honored to have received all of these recognitions, I don’t believe my responsibility to the community stops there. That is why much of my free time is spent continuing to advocate for LGBTQ+ individuals and helping with low-income housing projects. My goal always has been—and always will be—helping others as much as possible.
These last few years have been quite a journey for me, and I know that it isn’t over yet. Many people deal with the same things I have struggled with. That’s why I still give my all to help.
If you think you would be interested in an appointment, I offer a free 30-minute consultation. You may book a consultation online or call at 929-269-2139. I want to help you on your journey to self-discovery and happiness.
Gary Meier is a Manhattan psychotherapist and retired Roman Catholic priest with a Master’s in Divinity and Clinical Mental Health Counseling, as well as a Bachelor’s in Social Work. His book Hidden Voices: Reflections of a Gay Catholic Priest has garnered worldwide attention and helped many individuals come to terms with their own sexuality. When not working, he can often be found creating art or advocating for LGBT rights.
I want to make sure that everyone who needs therapy is able to receive it. That’s why I will work with clients on a sliding scale to help them find a way to fit therapy into their budget.
In addition, I work with all major insurance companies as an out-of-network provider and will help you get reimbursed from your insurance company. Click below to learn more about the sliding scale and out-of-network reimbursement.