Two Year Certificate in Spiritual Direction

CFDM Arizona, a regional affiliate of Christian Formation and Direction Ministries, offers a two-year certificate program in Christian Formation and Spiritual Direction involving 6-8 retreats of 3 days; monthly retreat days; monthly spiritual direction; group and individual supervision; group spiritual direction; and access to a network of spiritual directors.

The Goals of the Program
• Mature into deeper intimacy and friendship with the Triune God
• Develop a theology of Christian spirituality by drawing on and integrating insights from Scripture, theology, historical traditions, psychology and related fields
• Discover the richness of one’s own spiritual tradition, as well as the gifts and blessings of other traditions
• Learn about, and engage in, spiritual habits and practices that facilitate spiritual growth
• Grow in balancing prayer, study and service and in developing practical wisdom based on Scripture, tradition, reason, and experience
• Gain skills in providing individual and group spiritual direction from a Christian contemplative perspective
• Participate in a creative partnership among Christian spiritual directors

General Structure of the Program
A Cohort consists of students who meet together three times during year one, for three-day retreats and a one-day retreat.  In year two, the cohort meets for three-three day retreats.   During the first year, the focus is on spiritual formation and the tools for becoming a spiritual director. The focus of the second year is a practicum.  Students will continue with formation, with the inclusion of monthly supervision by a trained and certified supervisor, as they engage in spiritual direction with 2-4 directees.

Attendance at the specified retreats is essential, due to the communal nature of the program.

Entry Requirements
Admission is open to individuals (lay or clergy) from any Christian denomination who have a bachelor’s degree or its equivalent and have training or demonstrable knowledge of Scripture and theology. Life experience is highly valued as is awareness of a potential call to be a spiritual director. Admission to the program is granted by the Admissions Committee of the Regional program, composed of the Executive Direction and Faculty and Staff. An application consists of the following:
• A completed application form and application fee
• A statement detailing educational background, work experience, Christian journey involvement in church and Christian service, and interest in the program
• Two letters of reference (one pastoral and one personal)
• An interview with one of the Program Faculty/Staff

Joyce Vidal-Thornburg, MA, CT, CSD. Bereavement Counselor for Hospice of the Valley with 20+ years of counseling experience; Spiritual director, Supervisor, and Executive Director of CFDM Arizona.

Ann Hott, CSD, Certified Spiritual Director/Supervisor. Coordinator of Contemplative Ministries, Saint Barnabas on the Desert Episcopal Church.

Guest Faculty: Rev. Dr. Catherine C. Gregg, D.Min.,  Ordained Episcopal Priest, Canon for the Episcopal Diocese of Nevada, former Rector at Grace Episcopal Church in St. George, Utah, and former Director of both the Doctor of Ministry Program in Spirituality and the Certificate Program in Spiritual Direction at Azusa Pacific University in Southern California.

Other Guest Faculty as available

Tuition for year 2 year program is $4,000

For questions and to make an appointment for an interview, contact Joyce Vidal-Thornburg at

Information and Application