Spiritual Director Question

I would really like to engage a spiritual director as I think it would be greatly beneficial. My questions are the following:

  1. Does a spiritual director have to be a priest? If not, what would constitute a spiritual director?

  2. How do I go about finding one? I have emailed two priests, but neither have responded to me. It’s been defeating in that I haven’t received a response and I don’t know where to go to get this ball rolling!


A spiritual director does not need to be a priest. I have found them in different ways. First time I asked a priest in confession and he told me that in his parish he kept a list of people who do this.

If there is a retreat house nearby, they often have people who do spiritual direction. You can call the retreat house and ask.

There was an order of nuns near another place I lived who did spiritual direction.They all lived togetherand you coulc call a central switchboard and ask if they have anyone who does this.

I once had a spiritual direction from a wicked nun. Ruined my spiritual life.

So I would suggest, I go by the traditional. Spiritual directors are priests :slight_smile:

It’s safer that way.

Choose a priest who is holy and lead a good life. This is very rare in this age. I do not have spiritual director yet, but I do have 4 confessors. I don’t have spiritual directors because I do not want to be led astray by bad spiritual directors. He can tell you mortal sin is venial, and vice versa and confuse you.

For the moment I got spiritual direction through saints books.

Such as Introduction to Devout Life, by St Francis de Sales

You can get many saints books for free here

And the ones I particularly recommend here

Saints books have greatly helped my faith and bring me closer to Jesus. More than one can imagine. They lead me to the path of salvation.

The Other Books I would recommend to you is
Autobiography of St. Anthony Mary Claret

In St. Anthony Mary Claret, you can see the criteria of a good spiritual director. He is one edifying example, and very rare to find.

Diary of St. Faustina Kowalska - Divine Mercy in My Soul

You can read about how she got her spiritual director after long period of praying and waiting. You can imitate her how she obtain a spiritual director, and her obedience to her SD.

Story of a Soul - St. Therese of Lisieux

She didn’t have any spiritual directors. Only Jesus was her guide. And she made a way for little souls who doesn’t have any spiritual directors, that it is possible to attain sanctity and attain heaven, through resignation to God’s will, and do little things with great love. And trust in Jesus.

The Imitation of Christ - Thomas a Kempis

Favorite of St. Therese of Lisieux, it gives her counsels, and lead her to heaven. Favorite of many saints and my favorite too.

May the merciful Jesus bless you, and help you :slight_smile:

I agree with Hecares.

Spiritual directors may be priests, deacons, religious, or lay people.

Start by praying and asking the Holy Spirit to lead you to the right person.

Asking at your parish is a good way to start. You may want to phone or make an appointment to see your priest and talk with him if he’s not responding to your e-mails. The priest may not be able to be your director, but he probably knows who else is available.

As Hecares said, you might also try a retreat house, convent, or monastery to see if they either have someone available or can recommend someone.

I think it’s a good idea to have a meeting with a potential director to see if that person seems like a good match for you without having any commitment to meet beyond that first session.

This is an excellent website that might offer you some help. Also, and most importantly, pray that God will lead you to a good spiritual director.


Thanks everyone. Great answers and very helpful. Why don’t I think to PRAY!?!?!?!?! Grrrrrr! I don’t know why it’s so hard for me to remember this!

A “wicked nun?” What a terrible way to speak about a person who has given up her life for Christ.

Not all spritual directors are priests, as not all preists are trained as spiritual directors. Spiritual directing requires a relationship and you can’t get that from books. How do you dialogue with a book? How do you tell a book what your struggles are and how to discren what God is saying to you?

Spiritual reading is good, but it should not be a replacement for good spiriutal direction.

Yes, she lied to me. A person can hide under her habit. She made me suffer much by her false direction. But I have forgiven her.

Don’t want to debate on that.

Since then I believe that spiritual directors are priests. Most saints have spiritual directors who are priests

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