An invitation to become a Spiritual Director

Christian Spiritual Direction is defined as help given by one Christian to another which enables that person to pay attention to God's personal communication to him or her, to respond to this personally communicating God, to grow in intimacy with this God, and to live out the consequences of the relationship. The focus of this type of Spiritual Direction is on experience, i.e., any experience of the mysterious Other whom we call God. Moreover, this experience is viewed, not as an isolated event, but as an expression of the ongoing personal relationship God has established with each one of us.” (William A. Barry & William J. Connelly, The Practice of Spiritual Direction, 1992).

Commencing in February 2019, a 4 year course training Christians to be Spiritual Directors will be run here in the Newcastle region. This course is an evolution of a previous course in Spiritual Direction conducted here in Newcastle between 2011 and 2014.

Key Concepts of the course include:

An understanding of God's desire to be in relationship with the human person and of that person's faith response to God present in their daily life;

  • An understanding of religious experience in terms of the total human experience;
  • A way of contemplative listening that is grounded in one's relationship with God;
  • A way of living that values discernment and the recognition of the movement of God within one's life;
  • An appreciation of the rich resources of the Christian contemplative tradition that can enhance and deepen one's spiritual life.
  • A conviction that being in Spiritual Direction is a catalyst for spiritual growth.

As our Church learns from the past and embraces the future, the need for Catholic Christians to rediscover and enrich our individual personal relationships with God is vital in our adult faith development.  

The Spiritual Direction Ministry is one of the many ministries which a person may feel called to do by God and requires ongoing discernment, emphasised in this course.  Tutors assist in this process from year to year for participants.  This program features the integration of experience and theory in an adult learning environment; and comprises 200 hours of participant contact including a minimum of 50 hours of supervision. Emphasis is placed on prayer, contemplative reflection, the spiritual literature, reflective listening skills, observation and the participation in real plays.

Course formators include Rev Malcom Drake and Rev Nerida Drake both Associate Ministers @ AUCA and Sister Christine O’Connor RSJ. 

The course will be held in the Adamstown Uniting Church one night monthly with a weekend retreat each November. 

Anyone interested to find out more please contact Dr John Cavenagh via email , or ask to speak with John by phone by contacting the Inner Newcastle Parish on 49791101. 

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