Training in Spiritual Accompaniment

‘Exploring Spiritual Accompaniment’ is a two-year programme of formation that provides both an opportunity for personal spiritual development, as well as offering practical and experiential training in the skills applicable to accompanying others on their faith journey.

Our approach to Spiritual Accompaniment is ecumenical, drawing on a broad range of Christian wisdom and spirituality, as well as being informed by the Guidelines for Spiritual Directors, published by the Retreat Association.

A key principle undergirding the course is that it should be congruous with the process of spiritual accompaniment itself. Rather than only training in skills or knowledge, it should in addition be seen as a process of discernment and formation in the charism of this distinctive ministry.

The course will comprise 8 modules taught over two academic years. Each module will include a significant element of self-directed learning. This will provide an opportunity to reflect on matters considered between sessions, as well as enabling a focus on the development of listening skills and the practice of accompaniment.

Participants will be enabled to:

  • grow in their own spirituality and Christian formation
  • cultivate the core skills and qualities necessary for the practice of spiritual accompaniment
  • discern whether they are called to the ministry of spiritual accompaniment

The course is recognised by the major Christian denominations and is led by an ecumenical team comprising: Ruth Grant, Michael O’Halloran and Sister Sheila McNamara RSCJ

Course Content

The course will explore several relevant topics, including:

  • Theory and practice of Spiritual Accompaniment
  • Key Spiritual Accompaniment relationships
  • Contemplative listening
  • Traditional & Contemporary Spirituality
  • Good practice and Supervision
  • Personal and spiritual development
  • Safeguarding
  • Ignatian Discernment
  • Myers-Briggs Personality Type Indicators


  • The programme will run over the course of two academic years, starting in September 2022.
  • Each student will be invited to a review at both a mid-point and at the end of each year.
  • The course will be delivered via a combination of self-directed online learning and monthly in-person sessions (on Tuesdays, and one Saturday per term). These will be held (Covid permitting) at the Priory, 9:45am-4.00pm.

Course Details

The course will begin on  6th September 2022. A full list of course dates can be downloaded here.

  • The closing date for applications is 31st May 2022.
  • The cost of this course will be £750 per year.
  • The application form can be downloaded here.

For more information please contact Ruth Grant.


Further Information

It should be noted that this course does not lead to a professional qualification: participants are invited to approach it as part of their own process of discernment and spiritual development which will typically have already begun some time before application to the course.

All those who do go on to accompany others are asked to adhere to the Retreat Association Spiritual Direction Guidelines. They will themselves have a Spiritual Director and will also be expected to attend regular supervision.

The course price includes the online components and resources, access to wifi, basic support in using the Thinkific student learning portal, and membership of the Priory library.

Acceptance onto the course is subject to interview and two references. Potential applicants need to have experience of being accompanied by another for at least a year and should be able to demonstrate a deep commitment to their own faith journey and personal prayer life.

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