What is Spiritual Direction?
To grow spiritually, the first thing to do is pray. It is also important to continue to learn and be supported in your Christian life. This can happen in a small group setting (prayer groups, Bible studies, etc.) or you may choose to journey with a spiritual director. Simply put, spiritual direction is a relationship with a gifted and trained spiritual companion who journeys with you as you come to better know, love and follow Christ in all aspects of our life. Whereas the Holy Spirit is the ultimate director of the human spirit, the human spiritual director listens for the conversation taking place between the Holy Spirit and the directee and helps that person listen and respond more fully to God’s loving action in their lives.
Spiritual direction is not psychotherapy or counselling. It is not about solving life’s difficulties but entering more fully into the mystery of life. There is a clear recognition that God is important and present in the relationship which unfolds against a background of prayer. Thomas Merton, a twentieth century monk and mystic put it this way: “Spiritual direction is, in reality, nothing more that a way of leading us to see and obey the real Director – the Holy Spirit – hidden in the depths of our souls.”
On the practical side, a person usually meets with a director monthly for about an hour. Most often this is done in person, but given the vast distances of our diocese, some direction sessions may happen via telephone or video conferencing. There is usually a fee for this ministry and the diocesan standard is set between $40.00 and 60.00 a session. For those of limited financial means, please discuss a fee that is reasonable for you with any potential director during the initial conversation.