A number of people in Connor Diocese have completed training in Spiritual Direction in Drumalis, Larne, and would like to offer this service to people in in the diocese.
The training was undertaken by Jeni McAughey, Jean Gascoigne and Arthur Kennedy. It was run by the University of Maynooth and the Manresa Jesuit Centre of Spirituality.
Jeni explained was Spiritual Direction is. “The term can be off-putting, with thoughts that someone is telling you what to do,” she said. “Maybe accompaniment or companionship might better, but in any case, a Spiritual Director is someone you can meet on a regular basis to talk about your spiritual journey.
“It is allowing someone to come alongside you and share your experiences, difficulties and joys. It has been 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.’
“The director is non-judgemental and independent, and meetings are confidential. The emphasis is on listening and supporting in an atmosphere of concern and respect for the other person. It is not a counselling relationship although inevitably problems may be discussed.
“The experiences where we meet God as the basis for discussion in Spiritual Direction and the conversation is a three way process involving director, directee and the Holy Spirit.”
Jeni said that the directee and director agree a contract for meetings, and usually have a couple of meetings initially to see if both feel they can work together.
Jeni added: “We are conscious that others have been offering Spiritual Direction for some years and in fact some of us have attended Church of Ireland Directors in the diocese. We do not seek to take over this ministry but to augment it and would hope to build close working relationships with established directors.”
For further information about those offering Spiritual Direction in Connor Diocese, visit the Support section of this website.