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Spiritual Direction. A Portrait.

The purpose and qualities of Traditional Spiritual Direction and why its imprint in Our Charismata services is beneficial for you.

Spiritual Direction in Our Charismata with Anne Marie benefits

Traditional Spiritual Direction is a type of ministry that spans the millennia, is shared among varying cultures worldwide, and is in the service of meeting every type of Spiritual identity, including those seeking and not defined, within a place of Peace and radical acceptance.

My approach to providing services at Our Charismata is steeped in the tradition of the Spiritual Direction lineage qualities, virtues, aspirations, and ethics.

Approximately 30 years ago when I began to receive Spiritual Direction at age 16, I soon expressed a desire to be a Spiritual Director in my teenage years. My Spiritual Director was supportive, and encouraged me to have patience. She found a way to calmly explain to me why the required age minimum to enter into a certified Spiritual Direction program ranges from 30 to 35 years of age. Now that I am well past the age minimum for certification, I fully appreciate the reasoning for this "Live-Life" qualification!

Close to three decades later, the calling is still within my heart, and it has expressed itself as

"Specialized Spiritual Direction"(the little company "Our Charismata"), which is the basis gifted to me for all that is offered here, to share with you.

Feel a warm welcome to read my Notebook Post for more detailed information on what Specialized Spiritual Direction is, and how it makes everything possible for anything to happen within the services of Our Charismata.


Both Traditional and "specialized" Spiritual Direction are entirely dear to me and I appreciate all of the efforts of the most recognized governing body,

Spiritual Directors International.

I have included the "Portrait" below in order to show you all of the values this tradition has instilled in my personal/Spiritual Life, and in my services for you at Our Charismata.

"A Portrait of a Spiritual Director / Companion"

The following is an excerpt from Spiritual Directors International's publication.

"Spiritual directors or companions support the unique spiritual journey of every individual. They are welcoming and present with those they companion, listening and responding without being judgmental. They are contemplative and honor silence as a spiritual practice. They are intuitive spiritual friends — accountable and compassionate, hospitable and open, loving yet independent.

Spiritual direction or companionship inspires people to experience authenticity in their lives as they connect with and explore the ground of all being, that deepest of truths which is beyond life and death and goes by many names, including God, and no name at all.

Inclusive ~ Genuine ~ Listening ~ Accepting ~ Contemplative ~ Wise

Abilities and Gifts

A spiritual companion is called

  • The natural gifts of a spiritual director may include: discernment; guiding others in prayer and silence; ability to note and draw attention to the significant insights and sensed movements arising in the directee; capacity for depth and breadth; acknowledgement of spiritual freedom; grounding in stability; interpersonal rapport; the ability to meet a directee where they are and hold a safe space for them and their spiritual exploration.

  • Others recognize the director’s inherent qualities, such as: accountability, wisdom; gentleness; compassion; maturity; caring; prayerfulness; traveling a recognizable spiritual journey; personal integration; openness to self, others and the transcendent. A spiritual director is sought out and confirmed by others.

  • Honors contemplative connection: Directors seek to connect others with the deepest of truths; to support the spiritual transformation of self, others and the world; to embrace holism by integrating mind, body, will and spirit.

Skills and Knowledge

A spiritual director has training or experience

  • Listens deeply: noticing, tracking, distinguishing, prioritizing, paraphrasing, waiting, probing, challenging and disclosing—always to serve the directee and the spiritual direction relationship.

  • Maintains an inner life practice: including prayer or other contemplative practice, reflection, deepening self-awareness, and familiarity with personal gifts, limitations, and wounds, recognizing that all these affect the spiritual direction relationship.

  • Honors healthy interpersonal boundaries: understanding when and how to make appropriate referrals; acknowledging assumptions and personal biases and recognizing when those get in the way of the spiritual direction and recognizes and avoids dual relationships.

  • Exhibits habits of self-care and care for others, including careful attention to Guidelines for Ethical Conduct.

A spiritual director is competent

  • Honors confidentiality of directees in accordance with the Guidelines for Ethical Conduct and the Privacy Policy and Disclaimer.

  • Distinguishes between psychology and spirituality and recognizes the limits of personal knowledge and experience which might indicate the need to refer to another professional.

  • Recognizes defaults and limitations inherent in the nature of world-views when applied to one's self, others, and this service. Seeks to enlarge the scope; expand the horizons in discerning ways.

  • Recognizes varied states in directees, including mental, emotional, physical, spiritual states; noticing shifts in spiritual movements, affective moods, cognitive states; naming personal triggers, hooks, wounds.

  • Considers ongoing learning part of the calling, including study of various faith or wisdom traditions and orientations, sacred texts, and exemplars of faith; a spiritual director is open to insights from other professional disciplines, and the dynamics in psycho-socio-cultural integration.

Accountability and Integrity

A spiritual companion is authentic

  • Attends regular spiritual direction for self

  • Receives supervision by peers and teachers—and is responsible for her or his work through that direct supervision

  • Shows respect for the agency of directees—that is, the capacity of individuals to act independently and make their own free choices

  • Follows universal ethical guidelines, summarized as “Do no harm”

  • Finds support and is accountable in a community setting.

  • Inspires others to explore and embrace: trustworthiness; vulnerability; openness; courage; faith; integrity; transformation

  • Integrates values into daily life, such as: nonjudgement, inclusion, contemplation, compassion and service for the common good

Terms of Reverence

Spiritual directors may name the deepest of truths in diverse ways. They also honor the names that others revere.

Here are some of those terms of reverence:

Universe, God, Lord, Allah, YHWH, Great Spirit, Higher Power, Mystery, Sunyata, Brahman, Tao, Divine, Sacred, Holy, Almighty, Ultimate, the Beyond, Intimate, Abba, Nirvana, Wisdom, Source, Vishnu, Creator, Enlightenment, Interconnection, Holy One, All.

A spiritual director may identify by many different names:

Director, Companion, Elder, Guide, Teacher, Master, Friend, Anam Cara, Guru, Mashpia, Murshid." {Feel welcome to simply call me 'Anne Marie.'}

© "Portrait of a Spiritual Director/Companion. Spiritual Directors International.

Parentheses mine.

© 2022 Our Charismata

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