What is traditional spiritual direction?
Every person is on a unique journey of soul, and the spiritual director helps us attune to the movements of God’s presence that embraces every aspect of one’s life. Through the spiritual direction journey, we become more and more aware of how that sacred presence is active, and how it beckons us to respond. Issues of discernment, longings for healing, meaning of large and small life movements, images that arise in prayer and dreams, resonances with Scriptures, and desires for greater authenticity and service to others all serve as gateways into deeper awareness of God's presence and action upon our lives. From movements of great creativity and inspiration to experiences of dryness, doubt, regret, and grief --- you are welcomed to bring your authentic self to the light of the spiritual direction encounter.
What is Contemplative Spiritual Direction?
“Be still, and know that I am God.” - Psalm 46:10. Some encounter moments in life when we are beckoned deeper and deeper into the heart of God. With eyes closed, you and the director listen with the ear of the heart to the “still small voice” of the Spirit. The director often opens with a guided meditative prayer that leads toward stillness, and then we simply hold the intention to be open to the transforming presence of God. As we grow more still, some of the usual mental chatter becomes muted, and the contours of our deeper truest self begins to emerge. At times, a phrase or image surfaces. The director holds this sacred space, sometimes offering a short question that is inspired by the director’s mutual listening in the quiet.
Spiritual Direction is available via Zoom if preferred.
Suggested donation is $125; sliding scale available.
Brent received his spiritual direction formation from Mercy Center of Burlingame, California. Hallmarks of his formation have included a 30-day Ignation retreat, 5-month Benedictine monastic Christian formation, and Master of Divinity studies with the Jesuits at Santa Clara University. As a board-certified hospital chaplain, Brent has journeyed with tens of thousands of souls in particularly powerful life moments, from issues of chronic illness and longings for relational wholeness, to life-changing prayer encounters and near death experiences, to discerning the presence of God (or apparent lack thereof) in the very ordinary, to those who wonder "what is my life for?"
As a mission integration Catholic healthcare executive, Brent has facilitated seminars on effective dialogue techniques, ethics, human trafficking response, the art of reflection, and leadership training for thousands of educators, physicians, nurses, and healthcare administrators. He has enjoyed working with leading resilience studies researchers to create workshops for healthcare staff and contributing to the ongoing formation of chaplains and spiritual directors through mentorship, education, and retreat ministry. He is a contributing author for Presence, Journal of Spiritual Direction, and Franciscan Media. Prior to domestic ministry, Brent served as a nonprofit consultant and Fulbright scholar in Uganda, which led to HIV testing, AIDS medication, and safe water access for thousands among rural villages. Brent has studied multiple philosophies of dialogue, and as the Chair of a hospital ethics committee, he honed the skills for dialoguing across polarities in highly charged situations. However, he can still be baited by the dares and heckles of his three children to go rope swinging into the Allegany River on summer days (and even some November ones!)
Gina Anderson, M.Div., received her spiritual direction training from the Jesuit School of Theology of Santa Clara University. She has provided spiritual direction for people from many walks of life; from high school faculty to women's prison inmates. She relished her service as a hospice chaplain as she companioned patients and caregivers in this difficult-yet-sacred time of life.
She currently serves as the Executive Director of Canticle Farm. Her passion for service & the common good led her to serve as the Director of Community Service at a Catholic high school in Sacramento, California where she networked with dozens of nonprofits that are helping build a better world. She is also the founding Executive Director of Sowing Solidarity, where "care for the earth, and care for the most vulnerable, are one." She has led in diverse environments, including coordinating medical & dental teams in rural villages of the Dominican Republic. With her kids, Gina can be found harvesting vegetables from their backyard and turning them into delicious meals, enjoying dance parties, and playground hopping.