School of Spiritual Direction



If you’re new to the world of spiritual direction and feel a need to first experience it and grow your understanding of the contemplative tradition, we are now offering an easy on-ramp with our SSD Primer.  

This cohort will provide great preparation for our 2-year certificate program in spiritual direction. First, we link you with a qualified spiritual director so you have nine to twelve invaluable months of receiving direction before ever beginning Year 1 of the training. Second, we guide you in a small group setting through foundational aspects of the contemplative tradition via teaching, practice, debriefings, and short readings.

Each meeting lasts about 3 hours and follows the same format: the welcome, a prayer exercise, a 20-minute teaching, a guided practice, a time to debrief the practice, and time to comment and reflect on whatever readings were assigned in the prior month. (The readings are short, typically consisting of 1-2 chapters.)


  • Presence Over Performance
  • Desire Over Duty
  • (Inter) Dependence Over Self-Sufficiency
  • Vulnerability Over Self-Protection
  • Gratitude Over Entitlement
  • Embodied Over Fragmented
  • Mercy Over Judgement
  • Mystery Over Certainty
  • Consent Over Control


The cost for the SSD Primer is $850 total. There will be a $100 deposit ($40 non-refundable with the $60 balance refundable up to the start of the cohort) with 8 monthly payments of $93.75 over the course of 8 consecutive months. Books (minimal) and monthly spiritual direction are not included.


Lainie Elander’s cohort meets 9:00am – 1:30pm – EST, on Saturdays beginning in September 2022.
9/10/22, 10/8/22, 11/12/22, 12/10/22, 1/14/23, 2/11/23, 3/11/23, 4/15/23, 5/13/23.

Chris Goral’s cohort meets 9:30am – 1:00pm – EST, on Saturdays beginning in October 2022.
10/1/22, 11/5/22, 12/3/22, 1/7/23, 2/4/23, 3/4/23, 4/1/23, 5/6/23, 6/3/23.