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What is Spiritual Direction?

Christian spiritual direction is a ministry of holy listening in which one person helps another notice the Triune God’s active presence and perceive the Holy Spirit’s movement in their ordinary life. Spiritual directors journey with directees, assisting as they deepen their lived intimacy with Christ, the One True Director.

What Makes Richmont’s Graduate Certificate in Spiritual Direction Distinctive?

 

  • Solidly Trinitarian, strong Christology, high view of scripture, and classically influenced
  • Emphasis on spiritual formation and the teaching of Dallas Willard and Ignatius of Loyola
  • Experienced and respected instructors
  • Beautiful retreat setting for all residencies
  • Supervised spiritual direction practice
  • Focus on a lived experience with Jesus and training others to do the same
  • Cohort model that develops a community of Christ-likeness
  • Priority to integrate spiritual direction within the local church
  • Experience the Ignatian Spiritual Exercises
  • Training in spiritual formation assessment tools
  • Fully accredited graduate credit

 The Graduate Certificate in Spiritual Direction focuses on the historical roots of Christian spiritual direction and the role of spiritual direction within the Kingdom of God. Topics are explored and experienced in a cohort community (target size of 20) with growing prayerfulness and intentionality.  The training focuses on the individual’s lived experience with Christ and practice of course content.  Students agree to receive on-going spiritual direction, and supervision while simultaneously offering spiritual direction for the twenty-two months of training.

The three to four day residential intensives are designed to be both contemplative and instructional while held in a beautiful retreat center to foster and enhance the cohort’s community. The program directors remain involved and available throughout the training, combining their care and expertise with outstanding instructors who are also trained spiritual directors and active in ministry.

Course content is taught both through four residential Intensives and online. The program is completed in 5 consecutive semesters with the following five 3-credit hour courses:

Perceiving a Holy Invitation

The purpose of this course is to introduce students to the foundations of the practice of spiritual direction. Special emphasis will be given in this course to the clarification of terms, spiritual direction’s relationships with both theology and scripture, and discerning one’s call to spiritual direction. This class will also focus on historical roots of spiritual direction and the role of spiritual direction within the Kingdom of God. This course has both residency and online components.

Preparing an Available Self

 The purpose of this course is to develop students’ understanding of the nature of spiritual formation and invite them to pursue significant self-reflection. Particular emphasis on the Ignatian Exercises continues the program’s focus on historical roots and the role of spiritual direction within the presently available Kingdom of God. Attention will be given in this course to spiritual formation, the role of personality and psychometric assessment tools. This course is taught in an online format.

Developing a Listening Ear

The purpose of this course is to help students develop the practical listening skills of spiritual direction. Special emphasis will be given in this course to practicing spiritual direction as a director and participation in individual and peer supervision. This class will continue the program’s focus on historical roots of spiritual direction and the role of spiritual direction within the Kingdom of God. This course has both residency and online components.

Discerning and Knowing God

The purpose of this course is to help students know God more intimately and develop their ability to discern God’s communication. Special emphasis will be given in this course to the process of knowing God, methods of prayer, awareness and surrender in the discernment process, and the Ignatian rules of discernment. This class will continue the program’s focus on historical roots of spiritual direction and the role of spiritual direction within the Kingdom of God. This course has both residency and online components.

Arranging a Sacred Space

The purpose of this course is to prepare students to offer the ministry of spiritual direction with integrity. Special emphasis will be given in this course to identifying the needs of various constituencies, ministering within different contexts, and addressing special issues that arise in spiritual direction. This class will continue the program’s focus on historical roots of spiritual direction and the role of spiritual direction within the Kingdom of God. This course has both residency and online components.

Outstanding Instructors

  •               Tim Harben, D. Min. – Co-Director
  •               Sharon Rowland, D. Min. – Co-Director
  •               Charles Ayars, D. Min.
  •               Jan Johnson, D. Min.
  •               Ellen Kogstad, M.A. Sp.
  •               A team of trained Spiritual Director
  •               See complete faculty credentials – click here

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Requirements for Admission
School of Ministry | Graduate Certificate in Spiritual Direction

  1. Application Form and Fee
  2. Autobiography

    Write a personal statement incorporating the following theme:

    • “My understanding and sense of call to pursue the ministry of spiritual direction” 
    Your statement should be a minimum of 500 words and approximately 2-5 pages. This statement will be examined to determine your writing ability and will be rated according to clarity of thought, grammar, and readability. It will also be used to learn more about you personally.
  3. Resume
  4. Official Transcripts from all post-secondary institutions attended. Transcripts must be sent directly from the institution. In order to review your file, we must have an official transcript for every institution attended, even if any credits were transferred to another school. These can be submitted electronically to admissions@richmont.edu or mailed to our Atlanta Campus–1900 The Exchange SE, Building 100, Atlanta, GA 30339
  5. Ministry ReferenceThe reference should be completed by a pastor, small group leader, missions leader, etc.  Ideally it should be someone that can address your ministry involvement who you have served with/under or alongside. Please provide this link (http://richmont.edu/ministry-reference/) to your reference as they will submit this reference on your behalf.

Applications are review on a rolling basis, so once an application file is complete, we will have a decision in 2-4 weeks.

Tuition and Fees

2015-2016 Tuition and Fee:
Students Enrolled in the Graduate Certificate in Spiritual Direction: $300 per credit hour*

Student Service Fee: $100 per semester

 

Additional Cost for the student:

  • Travel to and from Atlanta for the residential modulates
  • Books
  • Lodging and Meals at Retreat Center (Approx. $135 per night includes three meals)
  • Your own Spiritual Director
  • Meeting with a supervisor for one year (six times)

 

Financial Aid is not available for the Graduate Certificate in Spiritual Direction.

*Tuition and fees are subject to change without notice. For a full list of possible fees, see the academic catalog

To find estimated total cost of the program view our Estimated Cost of Attendance.


 

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