Past participants of Hesychia School of Spiritual Direction

Past participants of Hesychia School of Spiritual Direction

Hearing from Past Participants

The Hesychia School of Spiritual Direction has taught prayer, listening skills and awareness practices to participants for nearly 20 years. Below are some testimonials from recent participants.

The Hesychia School of Spiritual Direction was started at our Redemptorist Renewal Center in the winter of 2002.  It focuses on the ancient art of Christian spiritual direction as practiced in a 21st century multi-faith context. Participants come from various religious backgrounds to learn a method of spiritual guidance to help them in their own particular ministry or in their working one-on-one with individuals.

We have Methodists, Episcopalians, pastors of various Christian denominations, Catholic priests, religious sisters and brothers, lay men and women. All are people who have come together to deepen their own spirituality and become aware how to walk with others on the spiritual journey through the special skills they have learned by “listening” to the Spirit or the Divine.

“Hesychia” is a Greek word which means “stillness, rest, quiet, silence.” Our program teaches prayer, listening skills and practices that build awareness of where God is already at work in the lives of individuals and in the world. Our four week program covers the history of Christian spiritual direction, a variety of prayer practices useful in spiritual direction, an overview of spiritual guidance as it is practiced in other religious traditions (Hindu, Judaism, Islam, Native American spirituality) and the psychological dimensions of spiritual life.

Facilitators and presenters over the four weeks give very inspirational and enlightening talks about many aspects of Spiritual Direction. Some of theses topics are: Images in Spiritual Direction, Working with Trauma Victims, Discernment, and Grief Work in Spiritual Direction.

Below are some testimonials from recent participants.



“The classes are very helpful in grounding us first on the basics of compassionate listening and how one develops that skill. through contemplative prayer, etc. I appreciate the wisdom that was shared and the instructions that helped me gain a little self-confidence for the practicum. I found the practicum very helpful in putting into practice what we have learned.” —Maria

“Knowing that SD’s roots are in the Catholic tradition, I wasn’t sure how my being non-Catholic, non-Christian, spiritual but not religious would feel going through this program. I am pleased that I have felt included in the various teaching sessions and by my fellow students. I had never before heard of Lection Divina, so of course I did not expect it. It is wonderful.” —Linda:  

“It is clear that each presenter valued stillness and has incorporated it as a way of being; therefore the topics presented  were imbued with the spirit of hesychia.” —Susan:  

“Lee’s [one of the presenters] sharing built upon my active listening skills—reminding me to stop talking and to get out of the way. Her many helpful tips will take time to make my own. For instance using open-ended questions and the importance of questions that get the directee to go deeper. There were so many more.” —Kathy