Formation & Spiritual Director Training Programs

Spiritual direction is at the core of everything we do at the Journey Center and it is our joy to offer Spiritual Director Formation and Training Programs for those called to serve as spiritual directors. 

“The goal of spiritual direction is spiritual formation- the ever-increasing capacity to live a spiritual life from the heart.”
-Henri Nouwen

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Meet Joanna Quintrell, Jenny Trees and Pam Carraher… members of our SDFP staff. They share what is unique about our program, what they love about the formation of spiritual directors in this context, and how to learn more. Our next cohort begins in January 2025 and the application deadline is October 31, 2024.

Spiritual Director Formation Program through the Journey Center Association

We have offered this 2-year program since 2009 and have had the privilege of preparing more than 75 people to serve as spiritual directors in their communities and churches. This program is for those discerning a call to be trained in the art and ministry of spiritual direction. Participants are prepared and equipped to offer individual and group spiritual direction, and to envision and lead contemplative retreats. The initial commitment is to the first 6 months of the program, which is a time of discernment for participants- is God calling me to be trained as a spiritual director in this program at this time in my life?

Our hybrid Spiritual Director Formation Program is offered online and in person (twice a year in Northern California).

This mostly-virtual program format accommodates those who are able to travel here twice a year for our in-person retreats, as well as those who live more locally. In the time between our two retreats each year, there are two Zoom sessions every month with the whole cohort, plus small group practice sessions and dyad conversations.

Our next cohort begins in January 2025 and we are currently accepting applications (with a deadline for application of October 31, 2024). For program details, please see the Information Sheet and Cover Letter in the adjacent column, where you will also find the application materials.

The Spiritual Director Formation Program Coordinator is Jenny Trees. She would love to hear from you to know of your interest in the program and answer any questions you have. Please contact her at

2025 Spiritual Director Formation Program Information

*You must use a personal Google account to fill out the Online Application and Letter of Reference. If you do not have one, please use the following print versions instead.
SDFP Print Application
Letter of Reference (print)

Journey Center Association Spiritual Director Formation Program Staff

Advanced Training Intensives for Spiritual Directors

Intensives and workshops are offered online and in Santa Rosa, CA and other locations. These provide spiritual directors with the opportunity to deepen and enrich their practice of spiritual direction. Training and certificates are offered in:
  • Spiritual Direction as if Oppression Matters
  • Group Spiritual Direction
  • The Art of Supervision
  • Dreamwork in Spiritual Direction
  • The Enneagram and Spiritual Direction
  • How to Offer Virtual Spiritual Direction Sessions
  • The Arts, Creativity and Spiritual Direction
  • and others
Our workshops and intensives are designed for spiritual directors who have completed their training; some are appropriate for those who are currently in a program but have not yet graduated. Check the description of the training for details. Information about upcoming workshops and intensives is posted here as these opportunities are scheduled. Please contact Joanna Quintrell if you have any questions or would like to let her know of your interest in this program:

Coming up 2023! Spiritual Direction Training Program through the Journey Center of Chicago (Online)

Each person has a need to be heard and to share about one’s life because our stories matter. We believe to listen to another is sacred. And so we practice radical hospitality, listening deeply and valuing each person we sit across from. People who desire to deepen their awareness of God’s presence and work in their life can meet with a spiritual director where they will experience this deep hospitable listening through the practice of spiritual direction.

Those who feel called to become spiritual directors and to listen in this deep hospitable way are welcome to apply to our training program.

Because of the unpredictability of the pandemic our program remains online at this time. We will continue to monitor it.

Visit the Journey Center of Chicago website or contact us at to download the information and application packet.


Spiritual Formation Program

In 2021, we will be offering monthly conversations that center around contemplative spiritual formation, practice and the complexity of being human.  These two-hour sessions will begin with silence and stillness, a spiritual practice and conversation around a particular topic and will be hosted by Journey Center Association Board Members and other Guest Hosts.  

This experiential program invites participants to explore contemplative life through various spiritual practices, readings and journaling, in community with other seekers on the same journey.  Encountering the presence and love of God, discerning and opening to the movement of the Spirit, and living from the true, authentic self…these are some of the anticipated gifts of these ongoing conversations.  

Information about upcoming spiritual formation conversations will be posted here as these opportunities are scheduled. Please contact Joanna Quintrell if you have any questions or would like to let us know of your interest in this program:

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