Spiritual Direction Training and Support

ESDA is pleased to offer the following organizations as helpful resources in the area of spiritual direction and spiritual formation.

You can filter this list by Training ProgramsDirection Organizations, or Formation Ministries

Biola University’s Institute for Spiritual Formation

A Christian, evangelical, academic community within Biola University and Talbot School of Theology. Located in Southern California they offer an MA in Spiritual Formation and Soul Care, an MA and an MDiv with an emphasis in Spiritual Formation, and a Certificate in Spiritual Formation, and are dedicated to deepening the life of prayer and openness of the heart to God.

Visit The Institute for Spiritual Formation Online

Christos Center for Spiritual Formation

Located near St. Paul, Minnesota, Christos is an ecumenical program that trains students of all Christian denominations though their two-year program: Tending the Holy: Preparation for the Ministry of Spiritual Direction. They also train in Chicago, IL, as well as through a distance program. Currently, a third of their spiritual direction students come from evangelical denominations. For more information about Christos, contact Coordinator and ESDA member Nancy Blanski at nancy@christoscenter.org.

Visit Christos Online

Denver Seminary

For more than a decade, Denver Seminary has provided training in spiritual direction that is evangelical in theology, classical in approach, and contemplative in spirit. Currently they offer a Certificate, an M.Div Concentration, and an M.A. in Christian Formation and Soul Care.

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Portland Seminary

This seminary offers master's degrees, doctorates, and certificates in spiritual direction and spiritual formation, delivered either locally in Oregon or online.

Visit Portland Seminary Online

Holy Conversation: A Course in Spiritual Direction in the Anglican Tradition

This two year course out of the Anglican Diocese in New England seeks to equip mature and skilled spiritual directors grounded in Anglican sacramental theology and the Catholic contemplative tradition. It is led by ESDA member Susan Skillen.

Visit Holy Conversation Online

Emmaus Formation Centre

Located in southern Ontario, Canada, the goal of the Emmaus Centre is to enable the evangelical mission of the church by providing a sacred space where people can respond to God's desire for a transformed people.They provide a supportive community and learning opportunities. The Emmaus two-year part-time certificate is offered to those called by God into the ministry of spiritual direction, as well as those seeking personal spiritual growth.

Visit the Emmaus Formation Centre Online

HCM International's Spiritual Formation

Certificate Program in Spiritual Formation & the Art of Spiritual Direction

This certificate program in Spiritual Formation and the Art of Spiritual Direction provides participants with the contemplative experiences, knowledge, and wisdom necessary to deepen their awareness of God, self, and others. A series of four residencies and two praxes form the core of this two-year training experience with faculty guidance and peer interaction between residencies using virtual formats.

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Richmont Graduate University

Located in Atlanta, GA, Richmont offers a Graduate Certificate in Spiritual Direction through a series of five 3-credit hour courses.  They also offer a fully accredited Masters of Arts in Spiritual Formation and Direction that incorporates the Graduate Certificate courses.  The programs are based around intensive residencies and synchronous on-line learning.  They are rich in hands-on spiritual direction practice, while they focus on the historical roots of spiritual direction and the role of spiritual direction within the Kingdom of God.  Topics are explored and experienced in a growing community of learning, prayer, and intentionality.  Please contact Dr. Joshua Rice, the Dean of the School of Ministry at Richmont (jrice@richmont.edu) with questions.

Visit Richmont Online

Selah (East and West locations) at Leadership Transformations

Selah is a 2-year certificate program in spiritual direction which is intentionally Trinitarian in theology, contemplative in style, and biblical in grounding. This program’s participants and graduates represent over 20 states and 3 foreign countries from a variety of evangelical Protestant backgrounds. Both Selah-East (New England) and Selah-West (AZ) are offered within the context of a residential model. Selah nurtures spiritual direction’s foundational understanding of the theology of spiritual formation through faculty teaching during retreat Residencies (5 retreats over 2 years), as well as reading and reflection assignments in between Residencies. Selah also develops spiritual direction’s central practice, through small group experience during retreat Residencies, as well as individual experience of offering spiritual direction and reflecting on it with a Selah faculty Supervisor (in person or by phone) in between Residencies. Download a brochure or contact Selah Director Susan Currie for more information: Susan@ltinc.org.

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Sustainable Faith

Since 2008, Sustainable Faith has offered accessible, practical, and affordable training in spiritual direction. The program is cohort-based, with 1st and 2nd year training located at multiple locations throughout the U.S. and Europe. Their focus is on preparing pastors, church staff & lay leaders to be effective directors through integrative study and hands-on practice. Cohorts meet for five weekend intensives over the course of training. This contemplative, experiential Christocentric approach is open to Christians of all denominations. For more information email todd@sustainablefaith.com

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