Saint Louis University

Spiritual Direction

Spiritual direction serves anyone sincerely committed to praying regularly and willing to share that experience in confidence with another believer experienced in these matters.  Spiritual direction can be especially helpful for those embarking on a life of serious prayer for the first time.  The frequency of meetings varies, but usually a person meets with a director once a month.

What does it mean to be "spiritual"?
To be "spiritual" means to know and to live according to the knowledge that there is more to life than meets the eye. It means to live in the knowledge that God is present to one personally, through interpersonal relationships, and in all of creation.

What is spiritual direction?
Spiritual direction is the conversation between two believers that centers on one individual's relationship with God. The goal of spiritual direction is to "notice" how God is present in one's life, leading one to a greater compassion, freedom and sense of purpose and meaning.  Spiritual direction helps explore the ordinariness of life and the mystery of faith, and is non-judgmental and confidential.

Who asks for spiritual direction?
Anyone who is sincere about growing in one's relationship with God, who is committed to praying regularly, and who is willing to share that experience with another committed believer experienced in prayer and in companioning others on their spiritual journey.

What do I need to bring to spiritual direction?
What is needed most is openness and generosity. When these are present, it is the Spirit who directs and who summons a response.

What are some reasons one seeks spiritual direction?

  • Support for one's faith life
  • A desire to grow in prayer
  • Encouragement in time of crisis - the death of a loved one, divorce, illness, a job transition - whatever might cause one to question the meaning of life and to search for a reason to hope
  • A desire to make a decision, with the guidance of the Spirit.

What can I hope to get out of spiritual direction?

  • To grow into a greater self-knowledge
  • To grow in a greater heart-knowledge of God
  • To become aware of how God is active and encountered in daily life

What is a spiritual director?
First, a spiritual director is not a psychotherapist or a counselor or a financial advisor. A spiritual director is a believer who has a committed, growing relationship with God.  A spiritual director is experienced in accompanying others in their relationship with God and one with whom you can talk about your experiences and encounters of God, both in prayer and in your daily life.  A spiritual director listens and will invite you to become more conscious of how God is active in your life and how you can respond to God's invitations.

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