Spiritual direction is a deeply personal and enriching way of receiving one-on-one guidance and support. Unlike a counsellor or therapist, a spiritual director is focused on helping you nurture your relationship with God and grow in faith.
To access spiritual direction, you can approach your local parish priest, contact a religious order that is close to you or whose characteristics or service you may feel a connection to, contact a trained lay spiritual director, or seek recommendations from fellow parishioners or friends.
During spiritual direction sessions, you can expect a safe and confidential space where they can openly share their spiritual experiences, doubts, and questions. The spiritual director, often a trained and experienced individual, provides attentive listening, gentle guidance, and insightful reflections to help you discern God’s presence and guidance in your life.
How can spiritual direction help me?
Having a spiritual director is a bit like having a tour guide who can help you navigate unknown territory or discover new “places” when it comes to your knowledge and practice of faith. It is distinct from counselling or other one-on-one sessions you might have with a mentor, coach or supervisor because it focuses distinctly on your relationship with God and – unlike counselling or coaching, which often involves receiving advice – is about assisting a person to discern God’s already present activity and calling in their life through listening, prayer and response.
It can also help you discern your unique calling and mission in life, help you work through a specific season or struggle, and uncover elements of your life, love, service, and ways you can fulfilment of your God-given potential.
This deepened knowledge can bring clarity, meaning, and purpose to your spiritual journey.
Through discussion, discernment and prayer, spiritual direction allows you to have the opportunity to deepen your relationship with God and understand the role that your faith can play in your daily decisions and life.
You receive support in a non-judgmental environment, where you can explore their spiritual concerns, struggles, and questions. This process can lead to greater self-awareness, healing, and a renewed sense of hope and direction. Through your willingness to receive guidance and through the time you dedicate, you develop a more intimate relationship with the Divine and experience a sense of inner peace, comfort, and guidance.
It is important to note that spiritual direction is a journey that varies for each individual. It is not a one-size-fits-all approach, but a personal process that respects the uniqueness of each person’s spiritual path.
When you are seeking out a Spiritual Director, express your needs, preferences, and any language support you may require to ensure effective communication and understanding during your sessions.