Photo by Serge Baeyens
“Spiritual Direction involves a process through which one person helps another person understand what God is doing and saying.” Richard Foster
Spiritual Direction is an ancient ministry, sometimes called spiritual accompaniment or prayer guidance, or soul friendship.
It is about taking the time to meet with another person to reflect on our relationship with the God who loves us and on where and who God is in our lives at the present time. It is a relationship which many find extremely valuable in helping them to deepen their relationship with God and to ”live life to the full - the good life as God created us to live it.”
Spiritual Direction is a holy, non-judgemental, confidential, prayerful space and is a ministry which is there for anyone, although accredited ministers and clergy are particularly encouraged to have a spiritual director.
Why have a Spiritual Director?
Below Bishop Mike and others share their experiences of Spiritual Direction.
"My own experience of receiving spiritual direction is that this has been invaluable in enabling me to pay closer attention to the action and prompting of God in my life. I have been blessed with a series of spiritual directors who have clearly spent much time in prayer, study and reflection themselves and as a result their counsel and wisdom have been especially valuable in a world prone to forgetting the One in whom we live , move and have our being. I would encourage any one to seek spiritual direction and consider it as a gift to enhance our relationship with God and a point of accountability for living out the consequences of this relationship." Bishop Mike
“It enables me to make better sense of my pilgrimage and continue supported in it.”
“It offers space where change can occur… an opportunity for others to find their God and their way… a space where people can be free to sing their own song and dance their own dance.”
"Spiritual Direction allows a space and time to focus solely on my relationship with God. Not the role I fulfil or the tasks I attempt to do for Him, but simply to spend time for me to be with God and listen to what he is saying. Having someone accompany me in this brings a richness and depth to my reflections."
"It is a time of generous hospitality and understanding, it helps me find 'stillness' that has deepened my connection with God, broadened the horizons of my prayer life through an immense range of suggestions and helped me think about simple and effective things that have informed, encouraged and inspired me."
Further information and reading
If you would like more information or help in finding a spiritual director/accompanier please contact Sue Piper and Carla Hampton. They would also love to hear from you if you are a spiritual director and would like to join the network of those offering this ministry in this Diocese.
Alternatively, you can download our leaflets to learn more about spiritual direction or if you are interested in becoming a spiritual director:
Spiritual Accompaniment/Direction | PDF
Becoming a Spiritual Accompanier/Director | PDF
For a list of recommended books on Spiritual Direction please see the resources section on our Spirituality page:
Spirituality | Weblink
Presentation from Gemma Simmonds - 2021 Spiritual Directors' annual gathering
Seeking Wisdom - discernment in a time of upheaval | PPT
Recordings of the 2020 gatherings
24 November 2020 - Part One
24 November 2020 - Part Two