In this unit, students are inducted into the processes and ministry of spiritual direction through focusing on a contemplative approach to spiritual direction; the nature and boundaries of the relationship of direction; confidentiality and appropriate consent procedures for referral; the environment and protocols for spiritual direction; the nature and boundaries of the supervisory relationship; and the different theories and praxis of spiritual direction.

The unit includes individual and group supervision, individual and group evaluations, group interaction and leadership of group spiritual practices.

Unit code: DD8705Y

Unit status: Approved (Major revision)

Points: 24.0

Unit level: Postgraduate Foundational

Unit discipline: Spiritual Direction

Delivery Mode: Blended

Proposing College: Yarra Theological Union

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Learning outcomes


Reflect critically on the nature of relationships in spiritual direction


Critically articulate the impact of accompaniment on human and spiritual development


Critically demonstrate an ability to engage in group supervision processes


Critically integrate their theoretical learnings, their ministerial practice and their personal development

Unit sequence

Co-requisites: DD8701Y and DD8703Y


Lectures, tutorials, supervised practice of spiritual direction

Indicative Bibliography

  • Barry William A., and William J. Connolly. The Practice of Spiritual Direction. New York: Seabury, 1982.
  • Buckley, Suzanna M. ed. Sacred is the Call. New York: Crossroads, 2005.
  • Coutinho, Paul. How Big is Your God? The Freedom to Experience the Divine. Chicago, IL: Loyola, 2007.
  • Gallagher, B. Taking God to Heart. Australia: St Paul's Publications, 2008.
  • Gallagher, B, Set Me Free. Australia: Coventry Press, 2019.
  • Guenther, Margaret. Holy Listening: the Art of Spiritual Direction. Boston, MA: Cowley, 1992.
  • Hart, Thomas N. The Art of Christian Listening. New York: Paulist, 1980.
  • May, Gerald G. Care of Mind, Care of Spirit. San Francisco, CA: Harper & Row, 1982.
  • May, Gerald G. Will and Spirit: a Contemplative Psychology. San Francisco, CA: Harper & Row, 1982.
  • Nouwen, Henri J. M., Michael J. Christensen, and Rebecca Laird. Spiritual direction: Wisdom for the Long Walk of Faith. New York: HarperOne, 2015.


Type Description Word count Weight (%)
Verbatim Report

10 x 300 word critical reflection reports

3000 50.0

1000 word portfolio on goal setting

1000 10.0
Workplace evaluation

1000 word case study

1000 20.0
Personal & Professional Evaluation

1000 word personal and professional self-evaluation

1000 20.0

Unit approved for the University of Divinity by Prof Albert Haddad on 9 Aug, 2022

Unit record last updated: 2022-10-10 15:25:28 +1100