“We define Christian spiritual direction 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.”  ~ William A. Barry, SJ and William J. Connolly, SJ, Center for Religous Development, Cambridge, Massachusetts, USA
Spiritual Direction can best be summed up as the art of contemplative listening.  Which is listening with the whole of one’s being. Traditionally, Spiritual Direction has been described in terms of a one-to-one relationship. Another approach that is relatively new is that of group Spiritual Direction. One’s situation in life and on-going discernment will determine which approach best fits an individual at any given time.

  • If you are facing an important decision or making a discernment
  • If you are facing a change or transition in your life
  • If you are feeling fragmented, disjointed, out-of-touch
  • If you are dealing with loss of any kind
  • If you desire growth in prayer and growth in charity
Spiritual Direction offers a safe, non-judgmental place of welcome for the directee where his/her experiences are taken seriously. Contemplation and personal reflection on one’s life and prayer bring this communication to awareness. Articulating and clarifying these experiences with a spiritual director assists the person to notice even more about his/her conscious relationship with God.

In the one-to-one relationship, Spiritual Direction happens when one spiritual guide journeys with another person listening to that person’s life story with an ear for the movement of the Holy, of the Divine.

Spiritual Direction is like having a coach in Spirituality.  Either as an individual or as a group, you will work with a specific director who will help you reflect and explore your personal spirituality.  

New Spiritual Directors of the Christian Community
On Friday, May 4, 2012 seven individuals (five ELCA from N/W and SE Synods) completed the two-year Spiritual Formation Program for becoming a spiritual director. Four of the seven also completed the first year of the Formation Program "The Foundations of Christian Spirituality" offered annually in DeWitt. The seven new spiritual directors are now available to serve in that capacity in the church at large.

2013 Spiritual Directors
(photo taken by Kim Winchell)

Back Row: Nancy Joseph, St. John's/St. Thomas East Lansing; Sue Bench, Zion Lutheran LCMS, Holland; Ken Greble, St. John Lutheran, Fowlerville-SE Synod; Shirley Moerdyk, Faith Lutheran, Sidney; Peggy Burns, Feast of Victory Lutheran, Acme

Front Row: Staff: Sr. Nancy Brousseau,OP, D.Min. & Joseph Byrd, D.Min., Zion Lutheran LCMS, Holland; Kim Winchell – Diaconal Minister, Our Saviour Lutheran, Saginaw; Pastor Rich Moe, St. Paul Lutheran, East Lansing

New Spiritual Directors completing the three year Spiritual Formation Program May 2016:

Row 1 left to right:  Pastor Emily Werner; Sr. Nancy Brousseau and Joseph Byrd, staff; Trevor Berrian; Lela Vandenberg;

Row 2 Top left to right: June Scarborough; Pastor Laraine Sundin; Kristine Fauver; Sr. Mary Hughes; Carol Demshuk; Sharon Ross; Lorie Gladyness; Dan McConnell

2016 Spiritual Directors


Individual spiritual direction is a one-to-one relationship in which you work personally with a spiritual director.  

Group Spiritual Direction happens as a group process with a facilitator.