Companions in Ignatian Discernment: Am I Called to Spiritual Leadership or Direction?
An Online Spiritual Formation Elective
DATES (Synchronous Class Times)
June 12, 19, 26, July 10, 17, 24, 2021 9:00 a.m.-12:00 p.m. EASTERN
Join us for a communal journey of experiential learning and prayerful individual discernment for lay or ordained persons. Those interested in the class should be sensing a call to the ministry of spiritual leadership, companionship, and/or direction. During the class, you will engage in:
- A guided Ignatian discernment process with the companionship and support of other participants and program leader(s) to nurture the dispositions of openness, generosity, courage, and interior freedom for decision-making;
- Large and small group discussion, prayer, and group spiritual direction; and
- Spiritual disciplines including daily 30-minute individual prayer and 10-15 minute prayer review time; daily Examen of Consciousness; and monthly individual spiritual direction.
By the end of the class, students should be able to:
- Distinguish between spiritual discernment and decision-making.
- Recognize the dispositions essential for the relational process of discernment.
- Have insight into the variety of experiential pathways available for discernment.
- Practice spiritual disciplines that establish the foundation and foster growth in interior freedom necessary for Christian discernment.
- Distinguish among various “motions of the soul” as possible evidence of God’s desire for the person discerning.
- Employ the principles of Ignatian discernment and steps of decision-making to discern a call.
Each participant may arrange one or two individual appointments with a program facilitator(s) during the program to share prayer and discernment experience.
Students interested in this class should be participating in a Christian faith community and have experienced a silent, directed retreat or the full Spiritual Exercises in any format. Also desirable is 6 months or more of spiritual direction. To explore your readiness for this class, please contact the instructor, Dr. Carolyn Nickerson.
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Carolyn J. Nickerson is a spiritual director with advanced certifications in spirituality and supervision from the WV Institute for Spirituality. She is currently a member of the Leadership Team for the Pneuma Spiritual Direction and Leadership Training Program of Pneuma Institute. In addition, she has led a variety of retreats for directors in training, on the 19th Annotation of the Spiritual Exercises, and for those wanting annual silent, directed Ignatian retreats.
Sparough, J. M., Manney, J. & Hipskind, T. (2010). What’s your decision: An Ignatian approach to decision-making. Chicago, IL: Loyola Press. ISBN 13: 978-0-8294-3148-3
Additional readings noted below will be made available to participants
de Mello, A. (2010). Seek God everywhere: Reflections on the Spiritual Exercises of St. Ignatius. New York, NY: Image/Doubleday. Chapter 9: “Contemplation to Attain the Love of God.”
Liebert, E. (2008). The way of discernment. Knoxville, KY: Westminster John Knox Press. Chapter 11: “Confirming One’s Tentative Decision.”
Lonsdale, D. (1992). Listening to the music of the heart: The art of discernment. Notre Dame, IN: Ave Maria Press.
Chapter 6: “To Love as Jesus Loved”
Chapter 8: “Obstacles to Discernment”
Martin, J. (2012). The Jesuit guide to (almost) everything: A spirituality for everyday life. New York, NY: HarperCollins Publishers. Chapter 14: “The Contemplative in Action.”
Pickering, S. (2010). Spiritual direction: A practical introduction. London: Canterbury Press Norwich. Chapter 1: “What is Spiritual Direction?”
Silf, M. (2019). Inner compass: An invitation to Ignatian spirituality (Anniversary edition). Chicago, IL: Loyola Press. Excerpts about consolation and desolation from Chapter 6: “Tracking Our Moods.”
Traub, G. W. (Ed.). (2008). An Ignatian spirituality reader. Chicago, IL: Loyola Press. Chapter 11: Au, W. & Au, N. C. “Refining the Acoustics of the Heart.”
Maximum enrollment: 12 students. Register soon!
The registration fee includes all handouts except the required text and the ongoing monthly individual spiritual direction.
Email ConEd@pts.edu or call 412-924-1345.