Hero background image default
Spirituality & Leadership
The Center for Lifelong Learning offers several non-degree certificate programs for individuals looking to engage and focus on a specific concentration of study.
Certificate in Spiritual Direction
Spiritual Direction, sometimes called spiritual guidance, spiritual companioning or spiritual friendship, is an intentional relationship between a person seeking spiritual guidance and a trained individual (the spiritual director). The Certificate in Spiritual Direction is a 2 1/2 year training program for those seeking to discern and develop their gifts and skills as spiritual directors.
Spiritual Director Supervisor Training
Our Spirituality Program partnered with Together in the Mystery to offer a one year training program for spiritual director supervisors. The training program, for experienced spiritual directors who seek to serve as supervisors for practicing spiritual directors and spiritual directors in training, was completed in May 2017. The future training will be announced.
Application for Cohort V to open in early 2025
The Certificate in Spiritual Direction (CSD) program is designed for individuals who discern a call to the ministry of Spiritual Direction
Grounded in the tradition of Christian Spirituality, the curriculum includes three five-day long residencies on campus, online components, individual reading and written reflections, and a supervised practicum in the art of spiritual direction. Organized on the cohort model, the certificate is intended to be completed in two and half years.
Areas of focus that weave through the formation program include contemplative listening, awareness of self and the holy spirit, discernment, somatic integration, spiritual practices and self-reflection, supervision, and ethics.
Applicants to the Certificate in Spiritual Direction (CSD) program should have completed a minimum of one year receiving spiritual direction with a trained spiritual director and agree to continue in spiritual direction while participating in the program
Applicants should be able: to articulate an understanding of spiritual guidance and discernment of call to the ministry of spiritual direction; narrate their faith journey and current spiritual practices; exhibit maturity and relationship to a faith community. Two letters of reference are required.
Computer and internet access are needed to use the seminary’s online learning platform and complete the distance components of the course work. Participants will not be required to be online at a specific time. Online segments are self-paced.
Our program is centered around the idea of consenting to the work of the Spirit which opens up immense possibilities for transformation. To embody this approach, the program is designed with the following characteristics:
The characteristics of the program are expressed through the following program features:
Awareness of the Presence
August 24, September 21, October 19, 2023
With: Leadership Team
Pre-residency focuses on forming a spiritual communal space, emphasizing creating a covenant of share intention and building supportive learning community. Associates will learn the art of cultivating living presence through contemplative practices, an essential step towards to the first residency study. This part of the program includes introduction to the program.
Contemplative Orientations and Sensibilities
November 6-10, 2023
With: Daeseop Daniel Yi, George Maxwell, and Leadership Team
Residency I is an immersive study designed to foster contemplative engagement in associates, guiding them to attune to their spirit, to God, and to the movement of the Divine in the lives of others. Associates will develop the skills and sensibilities of contemplative listening, emphasizing its application in the context of spiritual direction. The course will delve deeply into the profound implications of contemplative listening as a unique way of experiencing God to work through us distinct from active listening, counseling and other forms of support. Associates will practice contemplative listening in groups and its means of discernment.
Fundamentals of Spiritual Direction
July 22-26, 2024
With: Debra Weir, Elizabeth Ford Friend, Mark Dannenfelser, and Leadership Team
This second residency delves deeper into the fundamentals of spiritual direction. Associates will build upon their contemplative orientation and sensibilities to learn the theory and practice of spiritual direction. They will gain practical knowledge, including how to conduct initial meetings with directees, fostering director-directee relationships, and maintaining professional ethics. This residency includes rigorous classroom instruction, real plays and small group practices led by experienced spiritual directors.
Awakening Heart (Continued)
With: Sandra Smith
This online module designed to help associates expand awareness through learning about human conditions and typology in Spiritual Direction.
Spiritual Direction in Context
July 21-25, 2025
With: Elizabeth Ford Friend, Sue Park and Leadership Team
This final residency focuses on the application of spiritual direction in diverse contexts in ways that foster associates’ discerning heart and skills to meet the unique needs of individuals and communities from various of contexts. Associates will better understand the myriads of layers that shape personal narratives, lenses, and barriers. Associates will learn to use spiritual direction as compassionate practice envisioning diversity, equity, inclusion and belonging. This includes praxis-driven lectures and small group practice of group spiritual direction led by experienced spiritual directors.
The Practicum is a crucial dimension of the Certificate in Spiritual Direction program. It is designed to deepen competency, cultivating participants’ receptivity to the Spirit and their unique embodiment of God, and enriching understanding of the art of spiritual direction. The Practicum is a spiritual practice as well as an ethical commitment on the part of all spiritual directors. We offer a well-developed practicum process to facilitate formation and learning. Seasoned leaders guide the combined group and individual modules of the Practicum. Group reflection, self-assessments, and supervisor assessments will monitor this growth.
Upon completion of the requirements of this program a certificate of completion will be awarded.
The certificate will attest to completion of this formation and training program to develop the gifts and sensibilities of spiritual directors and support their callings to this ministry.
The cost of the program consists of two parts: the course fee of $5600 and the practicum fee of $1900 The total cost of the program is $7500, which will be divided into three equal payments of $2500, payable at the beginning of each residency.
The program fee includes online modules, course materials, meals during the residency, and the practicum fee. Housing is available for an additional fee.
For more information, please email Sharon Junn ( firstname.lastname@example.org), Associate Director, Spirituality and Lifelong Learning.
For more than 25 years, Columbia Theological Seminary has offered courses leading to the Certificate in Spiritual Formation (CSF), a journey through which modern-day pilgrims may quench their spiritual thirst.
Participants in the spiritual formation certificate program will gain a broad understanding of the Christian spiritual tradition and the various practices which have emerged from it. They will cultivate spiritual practices and skills to deepen their own relationship with God as they support others in their transformative growth. Persons in this course of study will discover the relationship of Christian Spirituality to compassion, justice and holistic ministry. Participants can take courses to earn credit towards the Certificate in Spiritual Formation or enroll for personal enrichment. These courses are open to everyone.
The Spiritual Formation program is designed to be completed in one to three years, depending on the focus of your concentration and the pace at which you take the required courses. The primary program components include the following:
The Certificate in Spiritual Formation, general course plan, includes:
Participants who wish to complete the Certificate in Spiritual Formation will complete a Statement of Intent so we may track your progress toward completion.
In addition to its general course of study, the Certification in Spiritual Formation program offers two concentrations through which participants can deepen their spiritual formation in either Spirituality in the Second Half of Life or Contemplative Living.
The Certificate in Spiritual Formation, concentration in Spirituality in the Second Half of Life includes:
The Certificate in Spiritual Formation, concentration in Contemplative Living includes:
These spiritual formation courses fulfill the Certificate in Spiritual Formation requirements. They are open to anyone interested in taking classes as an occasional participant. You do not need to be enrolled in the Certificate in Spiritual Formation program to register for a Spiritual Formation course.
While you may take electives of your choosing, you are strongly encouraged to take a well-balanced offering of electives including a class from each area: Biblical (B), Historical/Doctrine (HD), and Practical (P).
A time of reflection usually scheduled near the completion of the certificate. Retreats often are scheduled to be a week long. The Mindfulness and Christian Practice event in April 2024 also fulfills this requirement. Mark Burrows is leading a retreat to Iona Abby in Scotland. This Independent Pilgrimage Opportunity will also fulfill this requirement. See link in upcoming courses.
Independent Study; start and completion dates determined by students and practicum supervisor. Cost is $350 program fee + incidental expenses related to the project
More information HERE
Independent Pilgrimage Opportunity (Registration Full)
3 day and 5 day Centering Prayer Retreats
Location: Monastery of the Holy Spirit in Conyers, GA
October 28-November 1, 2024
April 21-25, 2025
Are you interested in sharpening your leadership skills or becoming a coach? TCI@CTS is a rigorous, proven coach education program accredited by the International Coaching Federation. The full course includes 60 hours of instruction and preparation, all delivered online, involving both virtual group sessions and asynchronous independent work.
TCI@CTS welcomes a new leadership team beginning in the fall of 2023. Leadership is now provided by the ICF-accredited coach educators from Loaves and Fishes. Dr. Laurie Ferguson, coach education director at Loaves and Fishes, has served as a member of the TCI@CTS team since we began is 2019. The full leadership team includes Laurie Ferguson, Ph.D, PCC; Chip Low, PCC, CMC; Jihyun Oh, ACC; Shelley Stanley Smith, Janice Fitzgerald, PCC, CMC, Princeton E. Abaraoha, ACC. All coach educators are ordained clergy with parish or other ministry experience. As always, we offer a proven coach training program that equips participants with the knowledge and skills to navigate their own way forward or guide others in a process of discernment and accountability
.As a participant in TCI@CTS, you will:
COACHING PROGRAM DETAILS
Mentor Coaching is offered October 4, 2023 – January 3, 2024. Individuals who have completed either an ACSTH level course or partially completed a Level 1 coach education course and are actively coaching two clients may register for this course.
Click Here for the Registration Page for TCI@CTS 2024 – all three options!
Beginning in 2024, TCI@CTS offers three all virtual options for coach education.
The Full Program Option (Comprehensive Coach Education Modules 1-5) takes place from January 3, 2024 – December 11, 2024.
Part I (Core Coach Education Modules 1-4) takes place January 3 – June 30, 2024.
Part II (Mentor Coaching Module 5) takes place September 11 – December 11, 2024.
For participants enrolling in the Full Program or Part I only, the course begins with a virtual orientation meeting on Tuesday, January 3, 2024 from 7:00 – 9:00 PM ET. For the Full Program and Part I, a twelve-hour virtual retreat is held from Jan. 8–10. It is followed by nine two-hour classes and one two-hour observed coaching session. Each class session is scheduled from 1:00 PM – 3:00 PM ET on Thursdays (usually the first and third Thursdays of the month). A concluding ten-hour virtual retreat is June 3–5, 2024.
Participants enrolling in Part II only will not begin until September 11, 2024 and will conclude in December 2024. A detailed schedule of dates for all three parts is available on the registration page.
All participants must secure a copy of the book, Coaching for Transformation: Pathways to Ignite Personal and Social Change by Lasley, Kellogg, Michael and Brown. It is the primary text and will be supplemented by additional materials provided as part of the course.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
How much does it cost?
2024 Full Program (Comprehensive Coaching Education, Modules 1-5): $4800. A non-refundable deposit of $1000 is due upon registration. Balances are due by December 3, 2023 unless a payment plan is arranged. Payment plans must include a second minimum payment of $2400 by January 3, 2024 and the balance due by November 11, 2024.
2024 Core Coaching Education (Part I, Modules 1-4 Only): $3100. A non-refundable deposit of $800 is required upon registration. Balances are due by December 3, 2023 unless a payment plan is arranged. Payment plans include a minimum of $1565 due by January 3, 2024, and balance due by May 15, 2024.
Fall 2023 and Fall 2024 Mentor Coaching Program (Part II, Module 5 and Final Assessment Only): $1700. A non-refundable deposit of $600 is due upon registration. Balances are due prior to the start of each program unless a payment plan is arranged. Two subsequent payments of $550 are suggested if a payment plan is arranged, the final payment due approximately a month before the final session.
What happens if I need to withdraw from the course after registering?
All deposits are non-refundable. Withdrawals a month prior to the start of Mentor Coaching (Part II) or Core Coaching Education (Part 1) will receive a refund of any payments minus deposit. Withdrawals after the January retreat of Part I will receive a refund of 50% of any payment exceeding the deposit. Withdrawals after the beginning of the weekly classes in late January will receive no refund.
What does being a “coach” really involve? Can I do it full-time? Part-time?
A coach is someone who helps a client get to a goal, or achieve significant change. Being a trained coach means that you have taken some of your natural gifts and skills for listening, encouraging and motivating, and developed them to a more effective level. TCI@CTS is designed to train you to be that kind of coach –someone who is knowledgeable and practiced in helping clients create change.
We emphasize two aspects –the coaching mindset, and the specific skills that coaching uses. The coaching mindset involves thinking about the client and their situation from the perspective of where they are and where they can go. It includes having a sense of possibility and a deep curiosity. It is the foundation of the process. The skills are the practices you use to coach.
When you complete the program, you will be able to use this training in ways that complement your work and sense of call. Some participants enroll with the intention of pursuing ICF certification (beginning as an Associate Certified Coach, or ACC)and becoming full-or part-time coaches. Others simply want to learn the coaching process so they can use it in the setting where they already are. As you work through the program, the faculty will help you sort out your next steps.
What is the curriculum like?
The entire coach training cycle consists of a total of 60 hours. The majority of the hours are completed during the virtual retreat in January and the closing virtual retreat in June. Weekly two-hour classes from late January – the end of May allow for extended learning and practice. Readings from the required text, written reflections and assignments complete the learning activities.
Every class, whether in person or virtual, will include practice coaching. The curriculum is designed to address the specifics of church and ministry coaching. It will include theological reflections on coaching, the role of coaching in ministry settings, and how coaching as catalyst for transformation and adaptive growth in faith leaders and congregations.
Will I have opportunities to actually practice coaching?
Coaching practice, feedback, and supervision are the heart of the training. There are presentations of material, discussions and observations of coaching, but the emphasis in each class is for the participants to develop coaching skills and a coaching mindset through actual live coaching. Participants who want to move towards certification will also need to accrue coaching hours beyond the training classes. Your coach educators will help students identify strategies for seeking potential clients.
Who can I coach after I complete the program?
You will be able to coach anyone who wants to work with you! While much of the training emphasis is on coaching pastors and other leaders in congregations and judicatories, you are receiving a standard coach training through a rigorous ICF-approved curriculum that can equip you to coach in a variety of settings. You will develop your own style and identify your best potential clients in the process.
Can I get certified as a coach through this program?
This program meets all the educational requirements for the credential of Associate Certified Coach through the International Coaching Federation (ICF), the most widely-recognized provider of coaching credentials. The ICF has recognized Loaves and Fishes as an accredited provider for Approved Coach Specific Training Hours (ACSTH) education and their Level 1 approval is pending. Completion of bothPart I and Part II – 60 hours – is required to submit for an ACC credential.
Have further questions?
For more information about registration, contact LifelongLearning@ctsnet.edu.
Enhance your ability to serve older adults in your congregation or faith-based organization. This series of four courses addressing the process of aging and implications for leading programs designed for older adults will enable you to support their ongoing spiritual formation more effective.
Aging creates special opportunities to strenghten faith formation. The four Older Adult Ministry (OAM) courses are designed to equip those working in churches and faith-based organizations to address the needs of older adults.
The OAM courses are open to participants from any denomination or faith tradition. There are four core courses, with two courses generally offered online each spring at The Center for Lifelong Learning.While participants may begin with any of the four courses, we recommend beginning with The Process of Aging and Implications for Ministry when possible. Courses may be taken in any order.
A Certificate in Older Adult Ministry I will be awarded to all participants who successfully complete the four core courses, including the final assignment that is part of each course’s design. The OAM I course of study may be completed in 12-24 months if two courses per year are completed.
Funds for financial assistance may be available through POAMN. Please contact Sarah Erickson if additional financial assistance is needed.
For more information about each course or to register, click on the name of the course, below.
OAM Courses 2023 –2024
The Process of Aging and Implications for Ministry, January 29 – March 8, 2024 with Zeena Regis. This is a hybrid course, with weekly live sessions via Zoom. Full details found by clicking the link to the registration page.
Theological Reflection in Older Adulthood, April 1 – May 10, 2024 with Paul “Skip” Johnson and Sarah Erickson. This is a hybrid course, with weekly live sessions via Zoom. Full details found by clicking the link to the registration page.
The program registration fee for each course is $265; register early for the reduced fee of $235.
The OAM Capstone Project –Level II Certificate
For those wishing to go deeper, completion of a Capstone Project will earn those participants a Certificate in Older Adult Ministry II.A Capstone is an independent study project, generally based in a specific ministry context, and is completed after the four core courses.The Capstone entails working with a local project supervisor and the OAM project advisor to design a project addressing an aspect of older adult ministry within a particular context or community and which demonstrate application of the theory and practices learned during the four courses in the OAM Certificate program. Participants may register for the Capstone when they have completed all four OAM courses and had a preliminary discussion with course leaders and the OAM Program Coordinator. The Capstone is $350, with part of the fee going to your project supervisor.
email@example.com for general questions
POAMN President/OAM Certificate Program Advisor
Presbyterian Older Adult Ministry Network
Stay up to date with courses and events in the Center for Lifelong Learning. Sign up for the Journeying Together newsletter.