Question about spiritual directors


#1

I'm a high school senior and am seriously considering a vocation to the priesthood (as a Salesian priest). I keep on hearing from different sites about spiritual directors..so I hope you don't mind if I have a couple of questions about that.
What is a spiritual director?
If I'm discerning the priesthood does my spiritual director have to be a priest or could it be a nun?

The only priests I'm close to is a retired auxilarary bishop who does mass at school once a week and I could only talk to him for about 5-10 min before the school bell rings. And the other is the curremt auxilarary bishop who was my parish priest when I was younger, my communication with him is letters and I can call him he once told me. Therefore this only leaves a nun at my school who I talk to sometimes. She told me once that she thinks I have a genuine vocation (though I struggle with it sometimes, but I haven't told her this).

And how do I ask a person to be my spiritual director?

Thanks and God bless.

Mary Help of Christians, pray for us!


#2

Your diocese should have a vocations office, and they should be able to offer you some help. You may not need a spiritual director so much as a vocation director :shrug: It may just be semantics, but a vocation director could help you find a spiritual director.

God bless you in your discernment!

Gertie


#3

A spiritual director is like a mentor. You tell him all about your spiritual life and he (hopefully a wiser, more experienced person than you) helps to guide you. I've had spiritual directors and one of the most useful things is that they see things about me that I don't see about myself. An outside perspective is really helpful.

Some believe that a spiritual director should always be a priest. My own opinion is that laymen and women who are discerning and advanced in the spiritual life are also capable of filling that role. But if you're trying to discern whether you're called to the priesthood, a priest would have the best understanding of your situation and the most relevant experience.

As for asking, you can simply do the direct approach and say, "I think I might be called to be a priest, but I'm not sure, I have some doubts. I was thinking that I could really use a spiritual director. Do you do spiritual direction? Or do you know of a good spiritual director that you could recommend?" You could also just ask for one appointment and decide at the end of that appointment how to proceed.

I think Gertabelle is right and your diocese probably has a vocations director. But since it sounds like you already have a relationship with the current auxiliary bishop, maybe you could write or call him and ask him if there's a vocations director, or how to get a good spiritual director. He might know something about who in the diocese is good at helping young men discern these things.


#4

I've found it most helpful to have a SD that is of your own gender and is a contemplative monk. Just my two cents.


#5

That makes me think…“my” monks do spiritual direction…but they are about 4 hours away. Would that work?


#6

[quote="Luigi_Daniele, post:5, topic:206609"]
That makes me think...."my" monks do spiritual direction....but they are about 4 hours away. Would that work?

[/quote]

Sure, with the advent of the telephone and email, distance shouldn't be such a problem (unless they're Carthusian). My SD is a Trappist, but we contact each other about once a week via email.


#7

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