Listening to God: Spiritual Formation for Congregational Leadership

January 1, 1970
$995. US
St. PaulMN

Listening to God:

Spiritual Formation for Congregational Leadership

A One Year Certificate Program

On-line or In Person

How will you and your congregation find the passion to carry out the ministry God intends for you?

We have found an approach that works for congregational leaders!

Listening to God offers

Ways to notice what the Spirit of God is already doing–Rather than just trying harder.

Help that allows the individual leader to rely on the Spirit’s energy–Rather than being over-responsible or giving up.

Approaches that help the leadership team listen to God–Rather than copying some canned program.
Methods for paying attention to God in the local congregation–Rather than envying what is going on elsewhere.

The Outcomes

Pastors and congregational leaders find new sources of energy.

Congregations find their own unique path to nurture spiritual growth, a central concern to many seeking a faith community.

Congregations learn how to re-discover the energy of the Spirit, which can ultimately lead to transformation.

What We Do

“Listening to God’ begins by spending a week together in retreat, developing trust and openness. We reflect on how to become a learning community. We aim at personal and congregational transformation, eclipsing mere intellectual learning or mountain-top spirituality.

We practice some simple beginning steps for the individual leader’s own deepening. We also discern ways to involve the entire leadership group in paying attention to God as well as re-thinking its approach to the congregation as a whole.

After the initial week, the cohort gathers on a monthly basis for four to six hours. These meetings are held for a year. The first three monthly gatherings will focus on self as spiritual leader, the next three on group as spiritual community and the third quarter on the congregation as the heart of the spiritual life. The final quarter content will be determined by the cohort.

The monthly gatherings include group spiritual direction and case studies. Sharing support, offering feedback, and a willingness to try new things are expected of all participants. In addition, each person receives individual mentoring and coaching.

Course Format

A five day intensive class:
Monthly meetings:
Live or on the Internet
Distance Learning Option

Those who opt to take the program via distance are required to attend the five day intensive class. Distance learners will receive audio tapes of the monthly meetings as well as regular commuication with a faculty mentor.

Program Fees

Tuition is $995 and includes retreat presentations, materials and monthly meetings. Fee does not include books or a $100 application fee.

Special offer: Additional leaders from the same church may come for $500.


John Ackerman: Presbyterian Pastor, spiritual director, teacher at local, regional, and national events. Author of two books on spiritual formation in congregations. Masters Degree in Spiritual Direction from General Episcopal Seminary, Ignatian training.

Richard Beckmen: Lutheran Pastor, spiritual director, speaker at seminaries and conferences. Executive, Order of St. Luke, Author of many books and articles. Certificate in Spiritual Direction from The Benedictine Center in Pecos, NM.

David Butler: Presbyterian Pastor for 19 years in Rice Lake, Wisconsin. D. Min from McCormick Seminary, Graduate of Christos Congregational Program.

Deb DeMeester: Presbyterian Pastor, Associate Executive Presbyter for Leadership Development, Twin Cities Area Presbytery. Adjunct faculty in leadership at St. Thomas, retreat leader and congregational resource person. Doctorate from St. Thomas in Leadership Development.

LaDonna Olson: Minister of Music, spiritual director, Certificate in Spiritual Direction from Christos Center, seminary student, graduate of Christos Congregational Program.

Judie Ritchie: Associate Pastor, Hope Presbyterian Church, ordained pastor for 21 years, Certified Spiritual Director, training in Marriage and Family Theory.

For more information please visit the website.