Spiritual direction is a sacred and secure space where you are accompanied on your own unique spiritual journey. It gives you a regular time and place of complete confidentiality to explore the movements of the spirit in the everyday experience of your life.
As a Jesuit centre, we work in the spiritual tradition of St Ignatius Loyola, founder of the Jesuits and writer of The Spiritual Exercises. Ignatian spiritual directors are trained to listen attentively and to help you to explore your awareness of God’s presence and activity in all your daily life. They can help you reflect upon your prayer life and broaden and deepen your practice of prayer, however, your director will also be interested to hear about all the other areas of your life too. They will not tell you how to behave and what to believe, instead, they will seek to deepen your relationship of personal encounter with the living God who loves you more than you dare to imagine.
In practice, spiritual direction is a regular meeting with a spiritual director, who has training and experience in accompanying others. We maintain a list of Ignatian-trained directors working with people who are currently living in London.
If you complete and return a spiritual direction request form, we will offer you a referral to a director and leave you to explore whether you would like to meet together. It’s a very personal and important decision and you are never under any pressure to continue meeting with a director who you don’t feel is ‘a good fit’ for you. You are also always welcome to get back in touch with us again for a new referral.
We only offer a referral service to people who live within the London area. If you live outside London, you should contact the Jesuits in Britain who keep a nationwide list of Ignatian-trained directors (including London-based directors happy to work with people based further afield).
We hold the names of spiritual directors working with people living in London. All these directors are trained in Ignatian spiritual direction, are in spiritual direction themselves, receive supervision for their ministry and engage in on-going training and development.
This group of directors is drawn from a wide range of backgrounds and Christian traditions. Most of our directors are lay people and female religious. We currently have comparatively few men or clergy on our list. (If you are especially seeking a Catholic priest director, then we suggest that you instead contact the Catholic Diocese of Brentwood and the Catholic Archdiocese of Southwark.)
If you are especially looking for a director who can guide you through a 19th Annotation retreat in daily life, then you should mention this on your request form. Please bear in mind that any new director would probably need to meet with you for several months before they could discern whether a 19th Annotation retreat seemed right for you at the current time in your life, and whether they were the appropriate director to guide you through it.
Our referral service closes for Christmas, Easter, summer vacations and other times when we do not have capacity to process requests. You may wish to explore other options such as the Jesuits in Britain nationwide referral service, the London Centre for Spiritual Direction's public directory of nearly 200 spiritual directors, the Catholic Diocese of Brentwood, and the Catholic Archdiocese of Southwark.
There are some practicalities for you now to consider.
Online and/or in-person: During the Coronavirus pandemic, many spiritual directors moved online. Our request form allows you to indicate whether you are happy to receive direction online, in-person or either. If you select online or either, we have a much wider pool of directors we might offer you. If you select in-person only then we may be unable to assist you.
Meetings: usually spiritual direction sessions will last up to an hour. Normally, the director and directee will establish a pattern of meetings. This could be every 4-8 weeks depending on the circumstances of the director and directee.
Cost: some directors will invite a specific suggested payment or donation for spiritual direction (about £35 would be average). Most will adjust this according to the directee’s financial circumstances. This is something to talk about at your first exploratory meeting with the director.
If you are interested and live within the London area, please complete the request form below.