What is spiritual direction?
A spiritual director is essentially a co-listener. He or she helps listens for the movement of God’s spirit in the everyday life of the directee. This person can be a priest, a religious, or a lay person. St Ignatius believed that the “Creator communicates directly with the creature.” This means we can hear the voice of God through the movements of our soul, and the feelings and experiences we have. A spiritual director helps the directee sift through all these things, paying attention to where God might be present and active. A good director essentially holds up a mirror before their directees, helping them be more reflective on the ways God is active in their life. Sometimes a director may point out something of God in the directee’s story that the directee was not aware of. Direction may also include an exploration of prayer, one’s deep desires and longings in life, a discovery of ways to deepen one’s relationship with God, or the discernment of life’s important decisions.
What happens in a direction session?
What spiritual direction is not
What is a retreat?
For those who cannot make it to a retreat house an alternative is an online busy person’s retreat. This kind of retreat happens in your daily life and at home, but you set aside a period of intentional prayer time and meet with a spiritual director each day by video chat. Click here for an offering of Ignatian Busy Person’s Retreats.
Spiritual Directors International has a listing of spiritual directors around the world from many different faith traditions.
The Jesuits of the East can connect you with a spiritual director close to you. Just fill out the form and wait to hear back.
There are many religious orders who have an Ignatian charism: The Sisters of St Joseph, the Cenacle Sisters, Sisters of Notre Dame, Sisters of Mercy, and the Sisters of the Sacred Heart – to name a few.
Retreat centres typically have a listing of local spiritual directors. See the links below to locate a retreat house.
See these links to find Jesuit Retreat Centres in the US, Canada, Great Britain, Asia Pacific, South Africa.
An Online Busy Person’s Retreat is an option if you’re unable to make it to a retreat centre.