Definitions of Spiritual Direction

"The ministry of spiritual direction can be understood as the meeting of two or more people whose desire is to prayerfully listen for the movements of the Holy Spirit in all areas of a person's life (not just in their formal prayer life).  It is a three-way relationship : among the true director who is the Holy Spirit ( which in Christian tradition is the Spirit of Christ present in and among us), and the human director ( who listens for the directions of the Spirit with the directee), and the directee.  The interpretive framework of this relationship is seeded by understandings of the spiritual life found in scripture and in the lives and writings of great saints and theologians.  The director is a companion along the pilgrim's way, wanting to be directly open along with the directee to the Spirit-undercurrents flowing through the happenings of the directee's life."                               Tilden Edwards, Spiritual Director Spiritual Companion - Guide to Tending the Soul

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There are three basic approaches to the art of spiritual direction.  These are the directive, the psychological and the contemplative-evocative.  The Alleluia School of Spiritual Direction uses the Contemplative-Evocative approach.  There is a direct and open reliance on the action of the Holy Spirit and prayer.  There is also a reliance on the power of the individual directee to come to a deeper self-knowledge and deeper intimacy with God through the dynamic of their transparency coupled with active listening by the director.  

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"It's time to return, to come home to our own soul, where God has chosen to live, and to speak from our soul to the souls of others.  If we do, we will ignite a revolution."                                                                                          

Larry Crabb, Soul Talk  - The Language God Longs For Us to Speak

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"Spiritual direction is a relationship through which we come to better know, love and follow Christ through the help of a kind of spiritual coach.”
– Dan Burke, Navigating the Interior Life

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"Evangelicals are listening for God in ways that are dfferent from our usual understanding of discipleship.  We are looking at many Christian disciplines, including prayer, silence and solitude, discernment, journaling and others... Spiritual direction is one of these disciplines many evangelical Christians are learning about and exploring. " Jeanette Bakke, author of Holy Invitations: Exploring Spiritual Direction, quote from a Christianity Today interview


VATICAN CITY, MAY 19, 2011 (Zenit.org).- Anyone who wants to live their baptism responsibly should have a spiritual director, says Benedict XVI.

The Pope affirmed this today when he addressed members of the Pontifical Theological Faculty Teresianum. The faculty was founded in 1935; the audience with the Holy Father was part of the institute's celebrations of its 75th anniversary. Benedict XVI recognized that an education at the Teresianum gears students to "the delicate task of spiritual direction."

“As she has never failed to do, again today the Church continues to recommend the practice of spiritual direction, not only to all those who wish to follow the Lord up close, but to every Christian who wishes to live responsibly his baptism, that is, the new life in Christ," the Pope stated. "Everyone, in fact, and in a particular way all those who have received the divine call to a closer following, needs to be supported personally by a sure guide in doctrine and expert in the things of God."

The Holy Father noted how a spiritual guide helps ward off subjectivist interpretations as well as providing the counseled with the guide's "own supply of knowledge and experiences in following Jesus."

He likened spiritual direction to the "personal relationship that the Lord had with his disciples, that special bond with which he led them, following him, to embrace the will of the Father (cf. Luke 22:42), that is, to embrace the cross."