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Spiritual Direction

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Over the past thirty years, spiritual direction has grown as a field impacting all aspects of the Christian church. The historic resources of prayer and other spiritual disciplines have been brought forth in applications for personal discernment and congregational life. Resources have been developed to assist us in understanding the depth dimensions of the human spirit and our relationship with the life-giving presence of God.

The Spiritual Direction track offers students an opportunity to enhance their ability to guide Christians in their understanding and practices of relating to God. In it, students learn the classical spiritual disciplines, study their historical applications, and consider how to apply these disciplines in a multitude of ways in their own congregations. Students also learn how to ground the spiritual disciplines in the mission of redemption, reconciliation and healing that God gave to the church, how to use spiritual disciplines to strengthen their leadership in the congregation, and how to bring spiritual formation to bear in issues of pastoral care, worship and administration. At the end of the degree, students will be equipped to serve as spiritual directors for individuals and small groups.

Our program is offered primarily in January and summer two-week intensives, with course preparation before hand and follow-up course completion. There are core courses for all DMin students in research methods and Practical Theology. The unique curriculum for the Spiritual Direction track has the following courses: 1) Spiritual Disciplines for Leadership 2) Spiritual Direction in Multi-cultural/Multi-religious World 3) Mission and Theology of the New Testament 4) Supervision in Spiritual Direction 5) Spiritual Direction and Pastoral Care

The program will meet most core requirements for the United Methodist Certification in Spiritual Formation (if you are UM). However, we welcome persons of all denominations. Garrett-Evangelical draws students across denominations and cultures. The conversations in classes are greatly enriched by this diversity. The program provides a rich background as well as supervision experience in spiritual direction. Your own research project will also be directed in the area of spiritual formation/direction. You will emerge from the program with an excellent background in the practice of spiritual direction, in the literature and historical understanding of spiritual direction, and its applications for today's ministry challenges.

Sample Schedule (based on school years beginning with the Fall semester):

Year 1:

January - attend two courses

Summer - attend two courses

Year 2:

January - attend two courses

Summer - attend two courses and begin work on mid-program material

Year 3:

Fall - submit mid-program material for approval and begin ministry intervention

January - complete ministry intervention and begin writing paper

Spring - complete final paper, defend it, and graduate

List of Possible Courses

The following are a list of courses that are commonly offered as part of this track:

"Spiritual Disciplines for Leadership"

"Spiritual Direction in a Multi-Cultural, Multi-Religious World"

"Mission and Theology in the New Testament"

"Pastoral Care and Spiritual Direction"

"Supervision in Spiritual Direction"

UMC Logo Garrett-Evangelical, a seminary related to
The United Methodist Church, welcomes
students from a wide range of faith traditions.