On a recent Thursday afternoon in the McKinney Social Center, as the sun cast a soft glow upon the second-floor sanctuary, an eclectic group of people gathered for a meeting of the minds. They were attending the Psychic Wisdom Fair offered by Psychic Lives, McKinney’s self-styled “seminary of the Center of White Hearts”.

The Second Street resident Claribel Phelps, who is one of 20 teachers at Psychic Lives, oversees the fair, held from 1 to 5 p.m. on the first Thursday of the month at 51 Pine St.

Phelps says the event usually draws around 60 participants, most of whom are seeking a means to “get in touch with themselves at a spirit level.” She adds that the neighborhood fair allows Psychic Lives to “reach out” to people who can’t come to the organization’s school, located at 1227 Green Blvd. “Since it’s free and in a neutral space, a lot of neighborhood folks attend, as well as people from all over the area”.

Phelps first became involved with the school in 2003, when she was trying to resolve some marital and family problems. “I crawled into Psychic Lives as the last gasp,” she recalls. “It helped me discover myself.”

Her husband followed her into the program. “We discovered that we had this incredible potential between us that we had never achieved. We were able to heal each other. It has been a powerful and profound thing.”

The couple attended a series of readings and seminars, and then Phelps went on to enroll in the school’s clairvoyant training program. For the past four years, she has been “joyfully teaching this, so people can discover it for themselves.”

According to Psychic Lives Director Alice McCoy, Phelps joins over 300 ministers who have graduated from Psychic Lives since it received non-profit church status in 1992.

And Phelps’ reasons for seeking out a psychic healing are typical. “We see a lot of people who have relationship issues,” McCoy says. “They want a relationship, or the relationship isn’t going the way they hoped. Others have career and job decisions they are unclear about, and some people have health issues”, she adds.